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Lesson 8: Natural sign, more on accidentals and key signature

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  • male robot hal style avatar for user phamtanminhvn
    Do you think music is amazing?
    l think it's great
    (13 votes)
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  • cacteye yellow style avatar for user Emma🖤
    Is there an easy way to remember the names of the key signatures?
    Thanks
    (4 votes)
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    • cacteye blue style avatar for user Pheonyx
      The easiest way for me to remember the names of the key signatures is to use the circle of fifths. Here is a link to an article that contains this circle and more information about music theory. http://openmusictheory.com/keySignatures.html Also: "fATHER cHARLES gOES dOWN aND eNDS bATTLE (the lowecase letters are the sharps)" is a mnemonic I use to remember the key signatures for sharped keys. The link I sent talks more about this.
      (5 votes)
  • duskpin ultimate style avatar for user Alexis Hinther
    He mentioned that you can't have both flats and sharps in the key signature but can you still place flats throughout the piece if they are marked as so if the key signature is a sharp and vice versa??
    (3 votes)
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    • piceratops tree style avatar for user Constantinos Kakoushias
      Above answers being true, generally, when choosing or playing a key is best to stick to sharps only and flats only. This ensures that you get all 7 of the notes (either with sharps or flats.) Let me demonstrate: If we chose to play D major (F#,C#) but instead of F# we put G flat we would end up with these notes: D E Gb G(natural) A B C# (D). So we have no F of any kind and 2 types of G. thats just confusing right? So generally, even in atonal music, we tend to stick to either sharps or flats. Of course it is possible to put both (music afterall is free) but only in complex instances.
      (3 votes)
  • hopper jumping style avatar for user 22g.wentzel
    At , he says that all Fs become F sharps. Does he mean the Fs in that octave or every F in every octave?
    (2 votes)
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    • female robot grace style avatar for user Violet A. Porter
      If the sharp is in the key signature, then ALL the Fs become F-sharps, no matter the octave, as long as the key signature is there. If it's an accidental in the measure, then whatever Fs are in that measure become F-sharps, no matter the octave. The octaves don't matter.
      (5 votes)
  • leafers seed style avatar for user dilsar2170
    how do you know where to put the bar line
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    • purple pi purple style avatar for user Planet X
      Single Bar lines
      The top number of the time signature shows how many beats equal a measure. When that many beats past you put the single bar-line.

      Double Bar-lines
      Put these at he end of a piece of music.

      Dotted Bar-Lines
      When you want to repeat a staff of music put that at the end of a staff.

      Hope this helps!
      (5 votes)
  • blobby green style avatar for user Kathryn Jones
    How do add a note or sharp to a note though? I know when there is a sharp or flat sign it becames c-sharp for example but how do you make it a c-sharp and not a c?
    (2 votes)
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    • duskpin sapling style avatar for user tzweil2849
      You add a # to the right of the note you want to be sharp. If you want it to be flat then you put like a little b symbol, you can google it. That's how it works for accidentals. If the key you're in just has a note that is sharp or flat, you put the symbol on the line that represents that note, before the time signature.
      (1 vote)
  • blobby green style avatar for user Kathryn Jones
    When he says if you want a b-natural when in the time signature it says all b notes become b-sharps do all other b notes in the measure become b-naturals or just that one note?
    (1 vote)
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  • aqualine ultimate style avatar for user deriv257
    anyone here say the boys okay
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  • blobby green style avatar for user John
    I play the clarinet and can never seem to get sharps and flats down. Do you have any advice.
    (1 vote)
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  • blobby green style avatar for user Blake Klostermeyer
    Is there an acronym or abbreviation that would assist me in being able to tell the key signature when sight-reading music? Thank you!
    (1 vote)
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Video transcript

- [Instructor] The sign for a natural looks like this. If a note does not have a flat or sharp before it, it is always a natural, with two exceptions. The first exception is, when an occidental is placed before a note, that note will always sound that way through the entire bar. (simple piano notes) Once the bar line appears, the note will return to a natural, unless the occidental, sharp or flat, is added again. (simple piano notes) Let's look at the last movement of Beethoven's Fifth Symphony once again. Notice the F sharp in the second bar on this excerpt, and that after the bar line, the sharp needs to be added again. In the fourth bar of this excerpt, we notice that the F sharp carries through the bar. ("Fifth Symphony" by Beethoven) The second exception is what is called a key signature. A key signature is a sharp or a flat, or multiple sharps or multiple flats, that are placed at the beginning of a line of music, between the clef and the time signature, and then, at the beginning of the line of music following. For an example, let's add one sharp to the key signature. First the staff, then a clef, let's use a treble clef, then a single sharp, and then the time signature, let's use four four. The first sharp is always an F, and, in treble clef, it's placed on the top line, the fifth line. In a bass clef, the first sharp is placed on the fourth line. The result is that any time a F is played anywhere in this piece, the F will be altered to a F sharp. Let's play four F's, two in the bass clef, (simple piano notes) and two in the treble clef. (simple piano notes) Now we add a sharp sign to the beginning of the staff and all of the F's now become F sharps. (simple piano notes) Let's look at one flat in the key signature. The first flat is always a B. In treble clef, it's on the third line. In bass clef, it's on the second line. Again, that means that every B written will be a B flat, without the need to add the flat sign before the note again. It's important to learn that if we have sharps in the key signature, we cannot also have flats in the key signature. If we have flats in the key signature, we cannot also have sharps in the key signature. If we are playing a work with one sharp in the key signature, of course, we know that sharp is always an F, but the composer would like to have a F natural played, a natural sign would have to be placed before the F. Let's look at the oboe part during a section of the Brahm's Academic Festival Overture. We first notice that Brahms writes a sharp sign at the beginning of the line on the fifth line in treble clef. Of course, we know also that that indicates that all F's are now F sharps. Since Brahms wants a F natural in this bar, he has to add the natural sign. He also does this in the first violin part. ("Academic Festival Overture" by Brahms) The same applies to flats. Let's look at Tchaikovsky's "Fourth Symphony", last movement. Notice that the first flat is always a B, and in treble clef, it comes on the third line. In the melody played by the flute, Tchaikovsky wants a B natural, rather than a B flat, so he must put a natural sign in front of the B. ("Fourth Symphony" by Tchaikovsky)