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ties vs dots in 3/4

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ties vs dots in 3/4

Postby jharris » Tue Jul 09, 2019 8:21 pm

I'm cleaning up a file. Music is in 3/4 time. However, client notated the music in 6/8. All over the place I've got the notated rhythm:
"dotted-quarter dotted-quarter"
In 3/4 this rhythm should be notated as:
"dotted-quarter, followed by eighth tied to quarter"

How do I easily fix the notated rhythms, globally, so that everything agrees with the rules for 3/4?

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Re: ties vs dots in 3/4

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Re: ties vs dots in 3/4

Postby N Grossingink » Tue Jul 09, 2019 11:14 pm

I don't know of an easy way to do this. The easiest but still a bit time consuming is by using the JW Pattern Copy plugin:
https://www.finaletips.nu/index.php/download/category/9-plug-ins-for-windows?download=67:jw-pattern-copy-v1.04&start=20

Just fix one manually and use the plugin to copy the rhythm here and there, as needed.

Is there some reason why you're using Finale 2014d? Finale 2014.5 is a free download and seems to be preferred. It installs alongside 2014d so you can try it out while not giving up your current setup.

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Re: ties vs dots in 3/4

Postby Gareth Green » Wed Jul 10, 2019 9:11 am

Just playing devil's advocate for a moment, is it really necessary to change it? It may be technically incorrect, but over the years I've sight-read many such examples, and they aren't really troubling or confusing.
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Re: ties vs dots in 3/4

Postby David Ward » Wed Jul 10, 2019 10:26 am

Gareth Green wrote:Just playing devil's advocate for a moment, is it really necessary to change it? It may be technically incorrect, but over the years I've sight-read many such examples, and they aren't really troubling or confusing.

I agree.

Depending on the complexity of the music and for whom it is written, least possible clutter may sometimes be a good guide. Singers especially often seem to prefer not to have too many avoidable ties. If their bread and butter is 19th century opera they'll be very well used to reading 3/4 bars divided in half in this way. (I'm talking about those singers who can actually count - almost all in my experience, despite the occasional troublesome exception.)

People who have to tap their feet to count beats may prefer the tie. Those whose counting is internal probably won't care too much either way.
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Re: ties vs dots in 3/4

Postby N Grossingink » Wed Jul 10, 2019 12:37 pm

I agree that either way of notating the figure will be clear to most musicians.

My arena of music engraving is educational music (school band and orchestra). This figure is almost always notated or edited to be "dotted quarter/eighth tied to quarter". A possible reason is that it is, after all, a syncopation. Showing the eighth tied to quarter subdivision indicates clearly where the "kick" (stress) occurs, on the eighth.

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Re: ties vs dots in 3/4

Postby jharris » Wed Jul 10, 2019 2:10 pm

Gareth Green wrote:Just playing devil's advocate for a moment, is it really necessary to change it? It may be technically incorrect, but over the years I've sight-read many such examples, and they aren't really troubling or confusing.


Yes, it's necessary to change it. House style.
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Re: ties vs dots in 3/4

Postby jharris » Wed Jul 10, 2019 2:27 pm

Thanks for the tip about the upgrade to 2014.5. How do I do that? When I go to Help>Check for Upgrade, it doesn't take me to a page for 2014.5.

Also, I tried googling, but gave up after ten minutes of head-banging. Ugh!
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Re: ties vs dots in 3/4

Postby HaraldS » Wed Jul 10, 2019 3:01 pm

N Grossingink wrote:My arena of music engraving is educational music (school band and orchestra). This figure is almost always notated or edited to be "dotted quarter/eighth tied to quarter". A possible reason is that it is, after all, a syncopation. Showing the eighth tied to quarter subdivision indicates clearly where the "kick" (stress) occurs, on the eighth.
N.

I strongly support that view. Most likely, it‘s a anticipated beat 3 and an eigth tied to the quarter reflects that, because it looks like an anticipated 3 in 4/4 time.
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Re: ties vs dots in 3/4

Postby motet » Wed Jul 10, 2019 3:11 pm

Go to the MakeMusic site for the update rather than using the Help menu.
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Re: ties vs dots in 3/4

Postby Gareth Green » Wed Jul 10, 2019 3:59 pm

HaraldS wrote:
N Grossingink wrote:My arena of music engraving is educational music (school band and orchestra). This figure is almost always notated or edited to be "dotted quarter/eighth tied to quarter". A possible reason is that it is, after all, a syncopation. Showing the eighth tied to quarter subdivision indicates clearly where the "kick" (stress) occurs, on the eighth.
N.

I strongly support that view. Most likely, it‘s a anticipated beat 3 and an eigth tied to the quarter reflects that, because it looks like an anticipated 3 in 4/4 time.


At the same time, it's equally common to see "dotted quarter/dotted quarter/quarter" notation for syncopated figures in 4/4 time ...
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Re: ties vs dots in 3/4

Postby motet » Wed Jul 10, 2019 4:16 pm

Gareth Green wrote:At the same time, it's equally common to see "dotted quarter/dotted quarter/quarter" notation for syncopated figures in 4/4 time ...
\
Really? That hides beat 3. I don't mind the 3/4 situation here, though.
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Re: ties vs dots in 3/4

Postby David Ward » Wed Jul 10, 2019 4:47 pm

Here (screenshot) I'm mixing various duration units in a fast 12/8 (Tempo designation ‘Manic blues’ dotted minim [half] = 80), but I think it's simpler (and thus clearer) this way, especially with the word-setting, than it would be with ties all over the place.
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Screen Shot 2019-07-10 at 17.34.32 copy.jpg
Screen Shot 2019-07-10 at 17.34.32 copy.jpg (38.8 KiB) Viewed 156 times
Last edited by David Ward on Sun Jul 14, 2019 6:40 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: ties vs dots in 3/4

Postby Gareth Green » Wed Jul 10, 2019 11:18 pm

motet wrote:
Gareth Green wrote:At the same time, it's equally common to see "dotted quarter/dotted quarter/quarter" notation for syncopated figures in 4/4 time ...
\
Really? That hides beat 3. I don't mind the 3/4 situation here, though.


I've sight-read many of those in my time as well; mostly without mishap ... :oops:
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Re: ties vs dots in 3/4

Postby ebiggs1 » Fri Jul 12, 2019 2:35 pm

... is it really necessary to change it? It may be technically incorrect,...


I would make it the easiest way to get the main most important thing across to the player. That would be the "correct' way to do it. If what you have does that, leave it. If not change it even if it is a pain to do.
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Re: ties vs dots in 3/4

Postby Jay Emmes » Fri Jul 12, 2019 4:03 pm

Not only is it technically incorrect to notate two dotted quarters, it also suggests a 6/8 time signature and thus a shift of rhythmical accents, which will very likely be audibly performed (only desirable if a huapango is what you want). Never notate a metrical division that is not consistent with the time signature.
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Re: ties vs dots in 3/4

Postby Gareth Green » Fri Jul 12, 2019 6:13 pm

Jay Emmes wrote:Not only is it technically incorrect to notate two dotted quarters, it also suggests a 6/8 time signature and thus a shift of rhythmical accents, which will very likely be audibly performed (only desirable if a huapango is what you want). Never notate a metrical division that is not consistent with the time signature.


But the "technically correct" notation is in fact a syncopation, which is by definition your "shift of rhythmical accent[s]"; it is beyond me how you think the two alternative notations would be performed differently. As I said originally, I accept the fact that the tied notation is "correct", but I really don't see a big problem with the other way.

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Re: ties vs dots in 3/4

Postby Jay Emmes » Fri Jul 12, 2019 9:01 pm

A syncopated note isn't necessarily a metrically accentuated note, whereas the second dotted quarter (fourth eighth) in a 6/8 measure by default is.
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Re: ties vs dots in 3/4

Postby Gareth Green » Fri Jul 12, 2019 9:55 pm

I think we'll have to agree to differ. In my book, a syncopation is, by definition a displaced accent, therefore there's no practical difference between the two methods of notation.
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Re: ties vs dots in 3/4

Postby Jay Emmes » Sat Jul 13, 2019 2:24 pm

Really? Pa(dada)Pa(dada) is the same as Pa(daPa)da(Pada)?

Please do me a favour: never play any of my music.

Conclusion, however, is that there is a discussion possible when you notate two dotted quarters, whereas there can't be any discussion whatsoever when you notate dotted quarter, eighth tied to a quarter.
And that's why there are dogmata.
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Re: ties vs dots in 3/4

Postby Gareth Green » Sat Jul 13, 2019 5:00 pm

Jay Emmes wrote:Really? Pa(dada)Pa(dada) is the same as Pa(daPa)da(Pada)?



In theory, no; in execution, yes. It's inevitable that both are going to sound exactly the same.



Jay Emmes wrote:Please do me a favour: never play any of my music.




If you're that inflexible concerning the difference between theory and execution, not sure I would want to ...
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Re: ties vs dots in 3/4

Postby Anders Hedelin » Sat Jul 13, 2019 5:47 pm

What happened to music reading ability through the years? In the 16th century musicians, singers even, had no problems reading and performing this:
Syncope of old times.JPG
Syncope of old times.JPG (11.31 KiB) Viewed 199 times

The time signature indicates two whole notes (semibreves).
(At the time they didn't even use barlines, and didn't get lost anyway. Well, maybe someone did, occasionally...)
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Re: ties vs dots in 3/4

Postby motet » Sat Jul 13, 2019 6:07 pm

Aside from the time signature, I see nothing unusual about that.

I seems to me that the dotted-quarter controversy is at least somewhat genre-related. Jazz players are more used to reading syncopation (e.g. eighth notes tied over the barline anticipating the downbeat) than classical players.
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Re: ties vs dots in 3/4

Postby Anders Hedelin » Sat Jul 13, 2019 6:29 pm

The time signature may have looked a bit different graphically at the time.
I think you are absolutely right, motet, in that the rhythmical spelling differs from genre to genre. Here's another example from contemporary music, very modernistic at the time:
Bartok syncopes.JPG
Bartok syncopes.JPG (20.48 KiB) Viewed 189 times

(From Bartok's fifth string quartet, not an easy piece, for anyone.)
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Re: ties vs dots in 3/4

Postby HaraldS » Sun Jul 14, 2019 6:58 am

motet wrote:I seems to me that the dotted-quarter controversy is at least somewhat genre-related. Jazz players are more used to reading syncopation (e.g. eighth notes tied over the barline anticipating the downbeat) than classical players.

Yes, it‘s genre-related, but it‘s also country- and time-related, as the ideals of how to write rhythms have changed over the years and in different sub-cultures.

The two-dotted-quarter-controversy (I like the word, thanks motet 8) ) is basically an educational problem: should a beat boundary be visible or not? (The discussion „what qualifies as a beat“ is another one...). Hopefully, we agree that reading music rhythms is pattern-based. Normally, you would start with simple patterns while learning. Now if you stick to the rule to have a visible beat boundary, you have far less possible patterns than if not. This means that the player can more easily build up a repertoire of rhythmic patterns. That‘s an educational advantage.

Lots of other evaluation criteria are possible, of course, but up to now I haven‘t heard a convincing argument to renounce on this educational advantage.
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Re: ties vs dots in 3/4

Postby Jay Emmes » Sun Jul 14, 2019 8:29 am

In other words (I'll gladly repeat my conclusion):

screenshot_59.png
This notation leads to discussion (as shown by this thread)
screenshot_59.png (13.03 KiB) Viewed 151 times

whereas

screenshot_60.png
No room for discussion, because unequivocally clear
screenshot_60.png (15 KiB) Viewed 151 times
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