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Thread: Zappa - Rat Tomago (help with notation)

  1. #1
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Sep 2017

    Zappa - Rat Tomago (help with notation)

    Hello, everyone... this is my first post. I'm glad to have found this forum and I hope to learn a lot!

    Can someone please help me understand how the notes in the middle bar add up to 4/4 time? I'm just not understanding how it works. Thanks!


  2. #2
    MMus, MA, PGCE JumpingJack's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Yeah, the initial G# and F# are grace notes and don't count (I'm assuming treble clef for the pitches)
    Then you have a triplet; three in the time of two. In this case, it's three quavers (eighth notes) in the time of two, so that makes one whole beat.
    Then the dotted crotchet (quarter note) takes a beat and a half (the dot adds half the value)
    The low D quaver (eighth note) is the other half (of the third beat)
    Then the quintuplet is 5 in the time of 4, in this case semiquavers (sixteenth notes), so that makes one whole beat (again, the grace notes at the top don't count).

  3. #3
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Sep 2017
    JumpingJack - Thank you very much for spelling that out for me. I'm going to try writing it out again (actually, I'm using GuitarPro 6) and see I can better understand it.

  4. #4
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Jun 2017
    It could be written better IMO. I don't like the dotted crotchet crossing beat 3 - it would be better as a crotchet tied to a quaver. The timing of the slide is not clear either.
    The quintuplet on the last beat is stupidly precise - nobody reading from this is seriously going to divide one beat into 5, except by accident (which is probably how the original player did it), especially preceded by a couple of grace notes. It would have been much better to make the D a grace note as well, and give some precision to the slide instead - how long is that C before it starts sliding up? Is it a steady slide from the beginning of beat 2, or a quick one towards the end of the note?

  5. #5
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Sep 2017
    One thing is clear... I have much to learn! Interesting stuff

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