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2davidc8's avatar

What is the musical signature of this piece? (details inside)

Asked by 2davidc8 (9204points) April 23rd, 2018

Is the music of this dance being played in 7/8, 6/8, or ¾ time?
Try not to watch the dancers, because that could throw you off. Just listen to the music.
I have an idea of what it is, but first I’d like the opinion of the expert musicians among you.

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10 Answers

Tropical_Willie's avatar

I’m not an expert but I get 4/4.

Tropical_Willie's avatar

Brubeck was 5/4 or 9/8 in “Take Five”.

dxs's avatar

4/4 or some variation. Not sure what kind of dance this is.

2davidc8's avatar

This is a Norwegian dance from the southeastern part of the country, near Sweden. My understanding is that the music for this type of dance can be in either 7/8 or ¾ rhythm, or sometimes even 3/8 + 3/8 + 2/8 mixed meter. I believe that this particular example is in 7/8, and the dancers are stepping on counts 1, 4, and 6, giving the steps a slow-quick-quick feel.
But I am not sure, and I was hoping that someone with a finer ear than I have could either confirm or correct me.
And no, I’m pretty sure it’s not 4/4.

2davidc8's avatar

@MollyMcGuire I agree that ¾ is close, but don’t you think count 1 is just a wee bit longer than normal, and maybe count 2 is just a tad shorter than normal?
I think that 7/8 is more like it. 3/8 + 2/8 + 2/8 = 7/8, with the musicians having 7 counts per measure and the dancers taking 3 steps per measure. Note that the dancers’ second step is quicker than the first step in each measure.

MollyMcGuire's avatar

I do not. The notes (quarter, half, etc.) can explain that but it isn’t happening all the way through the piece….which is very fun I must say. I also know that the signature can change during a piece but you could drive yourself crazy with this. :) @2davidc8

2davidc8's avatar

@MollyMcGuire Thank you for your input. I appreciate it.

dxs's avatar

This is not triple meter or anything but common time. It may be misleading since there are three main beats (3/8 + 3/8 +2/8, as @2davidc8 suggests) but that last beat is quicker.
Count the eighth notes:
1 & 2 & 3 & 4 & | 1 & 2 & 3 & 4 &

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