Learning even a minimal amount of music notation and terminology can greatly increase your enjoyment playing the piano. But which terms should you learn? If you browse through a music dictionary, there are an overwhelming number of terms, often followed by lengthy, technical definitions. And on sheet music, you will see unfamiliar symbols, and, not knowing their names, you will be unable to look them up in a straight-forward manner.
Because of this, I have wanted to make a short list of some of the most often encountered terms and symbols. Then I could give definitions that apply specifically to the piano, and, in addition, point out some interesting things associated with these terms. Unfortunately, it has become clear to me that I am just not going to have time to do this. I can supply the list, but you will have to do all the rest yourself by using various online or hardcopy dictionaries of music notation.
Look up each word in the list below. Memorize the term, learn the meaning, and get a mental picture of the notation that will be used in the sheet music. Learn them at your leisure and have fun!
8, 8VA, 8VA bassa
common time, half time
flat, sharp, double flat, double sharp, natural
middle C location (just below trademark on piano)
notes (whole, half , quarter, eighth)
phrase, paragraph, period, stanza
rests (full, half, quarter )
Fonts used for music:
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