In music, timbre is the perceived sound quality of a musical note, sound or tone. Timbre distinguishes different types of sound production, such as choir voices and musical instruments, such as string instruments, wind instruments, percussion instruments, it enables listeners to distinguish different instruments in the same category. The physical characteristics of sound that determine the perception of timbre include spectrum and envelope. Singers and instrumental musicians can change the timbre of the music they are singing/playing by using different singing or playing techniques. For example, a violinist can use different bowing styles or play on different parts of the string to obtain different timbres. On electric guitar and electric piano, performers can change the timbre using effects units and graphic equalizers. In simple terms, timbre is what makes a particular musical sound have a different sound from another when they have the same pitch and loudness. For instance, it is the difference in sound between a guitar and a piano playing the same note at the same volume.
Both instruments can sound tuned in relation to each other as they play the same note, while playing at the same amplitude level each instrument will still sound distinctively with its own unique tone color. Experienced musicians are able to distinguish between different instruments of the same type based on their varied timbres if those instruments are playing notes at the same pitch and loudness. Tone quality and tone color are synonyms for timbre, as well as the "texture attributed to a single instrument". However, the word texture can refer to the type of music, such as multiple, interweaving melody lines versus a singable melody accompanied by subordinate chords. Hermann von Helmholtz used the German Klangfarbe, John Tyndall proposed an English translation, but both terms were disapproved of by Alexander Ellis, who discredits register and color for their pre-existing English meanings; the sound of a musical instrument may be described with words such as bright, warm and other terms. There are colors of noise, such as pink and white.
In visual representations of sound, timbre corresponds to the shape of the image, while loudness corresponds to brightness. The Acoustical Society of America Acoustical Terminology definition 12.09 of timbre describes it as "that attribute of auditory sensation which enables a listener to judge that two nonidentical sounds presented and having the same loudness and pitch, are dissimilar", adding, "Timbre depends upon the frequency spectrum, although it depends upon the sound pressure and the temporal characteristics of the sound". Timbre has been called "...the psychoacoustician's multidimensional waste-basket category for everything that cannot be labeled pitch or loudness.". Many commentators have attempted to decompose timbre into component attributes. For example, J. F. Schouten describes the "elusive attributes of timbre" as "determined by at least five major acoustic parameters", which Robert Erickson finds, "scaled to the concerns of much contemporary music": Range between tonal and noiselike character Spectral envelope Time envelope in terms of rise and decay Changes both of spectral envelope and fundamental frequency Prefix, or onset of a sound, quite dissimilar to the ensuing lasting vibrationAn example of a tonal sound is a musical sound that has a definite pitch, such as pressing a key on a piano.
Erickson gives a table of subjective experiences and related physical phenomena based on Schouten's five attributes: See Psychoacoustic evidence below. The richness of a sound or note a musical instrument produces is sometimes described in terms of a sum of a number of distinct frequencies; the lowest frequency is called the fundamental frequency, the pitch it produces is used to name the note, but the fundamental frequency is not always the dominant frequency. The dominant frequency is the frequency, most heard, it is always a multiple of the fundamental frequency. For example, the dominant frequency for the transverse flute is double the fundamental frequency. Other significant frequencies are called overtones of the fundamental frequency, which may include harmonics and partials. Harmonics are whole number multiples of the fundamental frequency, such as × 2, × × 4, etc.. Partials are other overtones. There are sometimes subharmonics at whole number divisions of the fundamental frequency. Most instruments produce harmonic sounds, but many instruments produce partials and inharmonic tones, such as cymbals and other indefinite-pitched instruments.
When the tuning note in an orchestra or concert band is played, the sound is a combination of 440 Hz, 880 Hz, 1320 Hz, 1760 Hz and so on. Each instrument in the orchestra or concert band produces a different combination of these frequencies, as well as harmonics and overtones; the sound waves of the different frequencies overlap and combine, the balance of these amplitudes is a major factor in the characteristic sound of each instrument. William
An equal temperament is a musical temperament, or a system of tuning, in which the frequency interval between every pair of adjacent notes has the same ratio. In other words, the ratios of the frequencies of any adjacent pair of notes is the same, and, as pitch is perceived as the logarithm of frequency, equal perceived "distance" from every note to its nearest neighbor. In equal temperament tunings, the generating interval is found by dividing some larger desired interval the octave, into a number of smaller equal steps. In classical music and Western music in general, the most common tuning system since the 18th century has been twelve-tone equal temperament, which divides the octave into 12 parts, all of which are equal on a logarithmic scale, with a ratio equal to the 12th root of 2; that resulting smallest interval, 1⁄12 the width of an octave, is called a half step. In modern times, 12TET is tuned relative to a standard pitch of 440 Hz, called A440, meaning one note, A, is tuned to 440 hertz and all other notes are defined as some multiple of semitones apart from it, either higher or lower in frequency.
The standard pitch has not always been 440 Hz. It has varied and risen over the past few hundred years. Other equal temperaments divide the octave differently. For example, some music has been written in 19-TET and 31-TET. Arabic music uses 24-TET as a notational convention. In Western countries the term equal temperament, without qualification means 12-TET. To avoid ambiguity between equal temperaments that divide the octave and those that divide some other interval, the term equal division of the octave, or EDO is preferred for the former. According to this naming system, 12-TET is called 12-EDO, 31-TET is called 31-EDO, so on. An example of an equal temperament that finds its smallest interval by dividing an interval other than the octave into equal parts is the equal-tempered version of the Bohlen–Pierce scale, which divides the just interval of an octave and a fifth, called a "tritave" or a "pseudo-octave" in that system, into 13 equal parts. Unfretted string ensembles, which can adjust the tuning of all notes except for open strings, vocal groups, who have no mechanical tuning limitations, sometimes use a tuning much closer to just intonation for acoustic reasons.
Other instruments, such as some wind and fretted instruments only approximate equal temperament, where technical limitations prevent exact tunings. Some wind instruments that can and spontaneously bend their tone, most notably trombones, use tuning similar to string ensembles and vocal groups; the two figures credited with the achievement of exact calculation of equal temperament are Zhu Zaiyu in 1584 and Simon Stevin in 1585. According to Fritz A. Kuttner, a critic of the theory, it is known that "Chu-Tsaiyu presented a precise and ingenious method for arithmetic calculation of equal temperament mono-chords in 1584" and that "Simon Stevin offered a mathematical definition of equal temperament plus a somewhat less precise computation of the corresponding numerical values in 1585 or later." The developments occurred independently. Kenneth Robinson attributes the invention of equal temperament to Zhu Zaiyu and provides textual quotations as evidence. Zhu Zaiyu is quoted as saying. I establish one foot as the number from which the others are to be extracted, using proportions I extract them.
Altogether one has to find the exact figures for the pitch-pipers in twelve operations." Kuttner disagrees and remarks that his claim "cannot be considered correct without major qualifications." Kuttner proposes that neither Zhu Zaiyu or Simon Stevin achieved equal temperament and that neither of the two should be treated as inventors. The origin of the Chinese pentatonic scale is traditionally ascribed to the mythical Ling Lun, his writings discussed the equal division of the scale in the 27th century BC. However, evidence of the origins of writing in this period in China is limited to rudimentary inscriptions on oracle bones and pottery. A complete set of bronze chime bells, among many musical instruments found in the tomb of the Marquis Yi of Zeng, covers five full 7-note octaves in the key of C Major, including 12 note semi-tones in the middle of the range. An approximation for equal temperament was described by He Chengtian, a mathematician of Southern and Northern Dynasties around 400 AD.
He came out with the earliest recorded approximate numerical sequence in relation to equal temperament in history: 900 849 802 758 715 677 638 601 570 536 509.5 479 450. There was a seven-equal temperament or hepta-equal temperament practice in Chinese tradition. Zhu Zaiyu, a prince of the Ming court, spent thirty years on research based on the equal temperament idea postulated by his father, he described his new pitch theory in his Fusion of Music and Calendar 律暦融通 published in 1580. This was followed by the publication of a detailed account of the new theory of the equal temperament with a precise numerical specification for 12-TET in his 5,000-page work Complete Compendium of Music and Pitch in 1584. An extended account is given by Joseph Needham. Zhu obtained his result mathematically by dividing the length of string and pipe successively by 12√2 ≈ 1.059463, for pipe length by 24√2, such that after twelve divisions the le
A choir is a musical ensemble of singers. Choral music, in turn, is the music written for such an ensemble to perform. Choirs may perform music from the classical music repertoire, which spans from the medieval era to the present, or popular music repertoire. Most choirs are led by a conductor, who leads the performances with face gestures. A body of singers who perform together as a group is called a chorus; the former term is often applied to groups affiliated with a church and the second to groups that perform in theatres or concert halls, but this distinction is far from rigid. Choirs may sing without instrumental accompaniment, with the accompaniment of a piano or pipe organ, with a small ensemble, or with a full orchestra of 70 to 100 musicians; the term "Choir" has the secondary definition of a subset of an ensemble. In typical 18th- to 21st-century oratorios and masses, chorus or choir is understood to imply more than one singer per part, in contrast to the quartet of soloists featured in these works.
Choirs are led by a conductor or choirmaster. Most choirs consist of four sections intended to sing in four part harmony, but there is no limit to the number of possible parts as long as there is a singer available to sing the part: Thomas Tallis wrote a 40-part motet entitled Spem in alium, for eight choirs of five parts each. Other than four, the most common number of parts are three, five and eight. Choirs can sing without instrumental accompaniment. Singing without accompaniment is called a cappella singing. Accompanying instruments vary from only one instrument to a full orchestra of 70 to 100 musicians. Many choirs perform in many locations such as a church, opera house, or school hall. In some cases choirs join up to become one "mass" choir. In this case they provide a series of songs or musical works to celebrate and provide entertainment to others. Conducting is the art of directing a musical performance, such as a choral concert, by way of visible gestures with the hands, arms and head.
The primary duties of the conductor or choirmaster are to unify performers, set the tempo, execute clear preparations and beats, to listen critically and shape the sound of the ensemble. The conductor or choral director stands on a raised platform and he or she may or may not use a baton. In the 2010s, most conductors do not play an instrument when conducting, although in earlier periods of classical music history, leading an ensemble while playing an instrument was common. In Baroque music from the 1600s to the 1750s, conductors performing in the 2010s may lead an ensemble while playing a harpsichord or the violin. Conducting while playing a piano may be done with musical theatre pit orchestras. Communication is non-verbal during a performance. However, in rehearsals, the conductor will give verbal instructions to the ensemble, since they also serve as an artistic director who crafts the ensemble's interpretation of the music. Conductors act as guides to the choirs they conduct, they choose the works to be performed and study their scores, to which they may make certain adjustments, work out their interpretation, relay their vision to the singers.
Choral conductors may have to conduct instrumental ensembles such as orchestras if the choir is singing a piece for choir and orchestra. They may attend to organizational matters, such as scheduling rehearsals, planning a concert season, hearing auditions, promoting their ensemble in the media. Eastern Orthodox churches, some American Protestant groups, traditional synagogues do not use instruments. In churches of the Western Rite the accompanying instrument is the organ, although in colonial America, the Moravian Church used groups of strings and winds. Many churches which use a contemporary worship format use a small amplified band to accompany the singing, Roman Catholic Churches may use, at their discretion, additional orchestral accompaniment. In addition to leading of singing in which the congregation participates, such as hymns and service music, some church choirs sing full liturgies, including propers. Chief among these are the Roman Catholic churches. Mixed choirs; this is the most common type consisting of soprano, alto and bass voices abbreviate
Frequency is the number of occurrences of a repeating event per unit of time. It is referred to as temporal frequency, which emphasizes the contrast to spatial frequency and angular frequency; the period is the duration of time of one cycle in a repeating event, so the period is the reciprocal of the frequency. For example: if a newborn baby's heart beats at a frequency of 120 times a minute, its period—the time interval between beats—is half a second. Frequency is an important parameter used in science and engineering to specify the rate of oscillatory and vibratory phenomena, such as mechanical vibrations, audio signals, radio waves, light. For cyclical processes, such as rotation, oscillations, or waves, frequency is defined as a number of cycles per unit time. In physics and engineering disciplines, such as optics and radio, frequency is denoted by a Latin letter f or by the Greek letter ν or ν; the relation between the frequency and the period T of a repeating event or oscillation is given by f = 1 T.
The SI derived unit of frequency is the hertz, named after the German physicist Heinrich Hertz. One hertz means. If a TV has a refresh rate of 1 hertz the TV's screen will change its picture once a second. A previous name for this unit was cycles per second; the SI unit for period is the second. A traditional unit of measure used with rotating mechanical devices is revolutions per minute, abbreviated r/min or rpm. 60 rpm equals one hertz. As a matter of convenience and slower waves, such as ocean surface waves, tend to be described by wave period rather than frequency. Short and fast waves, like audio and radio, are described by their frequency instead of period; these used conversions are listed below: Angular frequency denoted by the Greek letter ω, is defined as the rate of change of angular displacement, θ, or the rate of change of the phase of a sinusoidal waveform, or as the rate of change of the argument to the sine function: y = sin = sin = sin d θ d t = ω = 2 π f Angular frequency is measured in radians per second but, for discrete-time signals, can be expressed as radians per sampling interval, a dimensionless quantity.
Angular frequency is larger than regular frequency by a factor of 2π. Spatial frequency is analogous to temporal frequency, but the time axis is replaced by one or more spatial displacement axes. E.g.: y = sin = sin d θ d x = k Wavenumber, k, is the spatial frequency analogue of angular temporal frequency and is measured in radians per meter. In the case of more than one spatial dimension, wavenumber is a vector quantity. For periodic waves in nondispersive media, frequency has an inverse relationship to the wavelength, λ. In dispersive media, the frequency f of a sinusoidal wave is equal to the phase velocity v of the wave divided by the wavelength λ of the wave: f = v λ. In the special case of electromagnetic waves moving through a vacuum v = c, where c is the speed of light in a vacuum, this expression becomes: f = c λ; when waves from a monochrome source travel from one medium to another, their frequency remains the same—only their wavelength and speed change. Measurement of frequency can done in the following ways, Calculating the frequency of a repeating event is accomplished by counting the number of times that event occurs within a specific time period dividing the count by the length of the time period.
For example, if 71 events occur within 15 seconds the frequency is: f = 71 15 s ≈ 4.73 Hz If the number of counts is not large, it is more accurate to measure the time interval for a predetermined number of occurrences, rather than the number of occurrences within a specified time. The latter method introduces a random error into the count of between zero and one count, so on average half a count; this is called gating error and causes an average error in the calculated frequency of Δ f = 1 2 T
A musical instrument is an instrument created or adapted to make musical sounds. In principle, any object that produces sound can be considered a musical instrument—it is through purpose that the object becomes a musical instrument; the history of musical instruments dates to the beginnings of human culture. Early musical instruments may have been used for ritual, such as a trumpet to signal success on the hunt, or a drum in a religious ceremony. Cultures developed composition and performance of melodies for entertainment. Musical instruments evolved in step with changing applications; the date and origin of the first device considered. The oldest object that some scholars refer to as a musical instrument, a simple flute, dates back as far as 67,000 years; some consensus dates early flutes to about 37,000 years ago. However, most historians believe that determining a specific time of musical instrument invention is impossible due to the subjectivity of the definition and the relative instability of materials used to make them.
Many early musical instruments were made from animal skins, bone and other non-durable materials. Musical instruments developed independently in many populated regions of the world. However, contact among civilizations caused rapid spread and adaptation of most instruments in places far from their origin. By the Middle Ages, instruments from Mesopotamia were in maritime Southeast Asia, Europeans played instruments from North Africa. Development in the Americas occurred at a slower pace, but cultures of North and South America shared musical instruments. By 1400, musical instrument development was dominated by the Occident. Musical instrument classification is a discipline in its own right, many systems of classification have been used over the years. Instruments can be classified by their material composition, their size, etc.. However, the most common academic method, Hornbostel-Sachs, uses the means by which they produce sound; the academic study of musical instruments is called organology. A musical instrument makes sounds.
Once humans moved from making sounds with their bodies—for example, by clapping—to using objects to create music from sounds, musical instruments were born. Primitive instruments were designed to emulate natural sounds, their purpose was ritual rather than entertainment; the concept of melody and the artistic pursuit of musical composition were unknown to early players of musical instruments. A player sounding a flute to signal the start of a hunt does so without thought of the modern notion of "making music". Musical instruments are constructed in a broad array of styles and shapes, using many different materials. Early musical instruments were made from "found objects" such a shells and plant parts; as instruments evolved, so did the selection and quality of materials. Every material in nature has been used by at least one culture to make musical instruments. One plays a musical instrument by interacting with it in some way—for example, by plucking the strings on a string instrument. Researchers have discovered archaeological evidence of musical instruments in many parts of the world.
Some finds are 67,000 years old, however their status as musical instruments is in dispute. Consensus solidifies about artifacts dated back to around 37,000 years old and later. Only artifacts made from durable materials or using durable methods tend to survive; as such, the specimens found. In July 1995, Slovenian archaeologist Ivan Turk discovered a bone carving in the northwest region of Slovenia; the carving, named the Divje Babe Flute, features four holes that Canadian musicologist Bob Fink determined could have been used to play four notes of a diatonic scale. Researchers estimate the flute's age at between 43,400 and 67,000 years, making it the oldest known musical instrument and the only musical instrument associated with the Neanderthal culture. However, some archaeologists and ethnomusicologists dispute the flute's status as a musical instrument. German archaeologists have found mammoth bone and swan bone flutes dating back to 30,000 to 37,000 years old in the Swabian Alps; the flutes were made in the Upper Paleolithic age, are more accepted as being the oldest known musical instruments.
Archaeological evidence of musical instruments was discovered in excavations at the Royal Cemetery in the Sumerian city of Ur. These instruments, one of the first ensembles of instruments yet discovered, include nine lyres, two harps, a silver double flute and cymbals. A set of reed-sounded silver pipes discovered in Ur was the predecessor of modern bagpipes; the cylindrical pipes feature three side-holes. These excavations, carried out by Leonard Woolley in the 1920s, uncovered non-degradable fragments of instruments and the voids left by the degraded segments that, have been used to reconstruct them; the graves these instruments were buried in have been carbon dated to between 2600 and 2500 BC, providing evidence that these instruments were used in Sumeria by this time. Archaeologists in the Jiahu site of central Henan province of China have found flutes made of bones that date back 7,000 to 9,000 years, representing some of the "earliest complete, tightly-dated, multinote musical instruments" found.
Scholars agree that there are no reliable methods of determining the exact chronology of musical instruments across cultures. Comparing and organizing instruments based on their complexity is misleading, since advancements in musical instruments have sometimes reduced complexity. For example, construction of early slit drums involved f
Gioseffo Zarlino was an Italian music theorist and composer of the Renaissance. He was the most famous European music theorist between Aristoxenus and Rameau, made a large contribution to the theory of counterpoint as well as to musical tuning. Zarlino was born near Venice, his early education was with the Franciscans, he joined the order himself. In 1536 he was a singer at Chioggia Cathedral, by 1539 he not only became a deacon, but principal organist. In 1540 he was ordained, in 1541 went to Venice to study with the famous contrapuntist and maestro di cappella of Saint Mark's, Adrian Willaert. In 1565, on the resignation of Cipriano de Rore, Zarlino took over the post of maestro di cappella of St. Mark's, one of the most prestigious musical positions in Italy, held it until his death. While maestro di cappella he taught some of the principal figures of the Venetian school of composers, including Claudio Merulo, Girolamo Diruta, Giovanni Croce, as well as Vincenzo Galilei, the father of the astronomer, the famous reactionary polemicist Giovanni Artusi.
While he was a moderately prolific composer, his motets are polished and display a mastery of canonic counterpoint, his principal claim to fame was his work as a theorist. While Pietro Aaron may have been the first theorist to describe a version of meantone, Zarlino seems to have been the first to do so with exactitude, describing 2/7-comma meantone in his Le istitutioni harmoniche in 1558. Zarlino described the 1/4-comma meantone and 1/3-comma meantone, considering all three temperaments to be usable; these are the precursors to the 50- 31- and 19-tone equal temperaments, respectively. In his Dimostrationi harmoniche of 1571, he revised the numbering of modes to make the finales of the mode conform to the notes of the natural hexachord. Zarlino was the first to theorize the primacy of triad over interval as a means of structuring harmony, his exposition of just intonation based on proportions within the "Senario" and 8 is a departure from the established Pythagorean diatonic system as passed on by Boethius.
See: Ptolemy's intense diatonic scale. He was one of the first theorists to offer an explanation for the prohibition of parallel fifths and octaves in counterpoint, to study the effect and harmonic implications of the false relation. Zarlino's writings published by Francesco Franceschi, spread throughout Europe at the end of the 16th century. Translations and annotated versions were common in France, Germany, as well as in the Netherlands among students of Sweelinck, thus influencing the next generation of musicians who represented the early Baroque style. Zarlino's compositions are more conservative in idiom than those of many of his contemporaries, his madrigals avoid the homophonic textures used by other composers, remaining polyphonic throughout, in the manner of his motets. His works were published between 1549 and 1567, include 41 motets for five and six voices, 13 secular works madrigals, for four and five voices, his 10 motets on the Song of Songs used the text of Isidoro Chiari's translation of the Bible.
Gioseffo Zarlino, Canticum Canticorum Salomonis. Michael Noone, Ensemble Plus Ultra. GCD921406 "Zarlino: Modulationes sex vocum", Singer Pur, OEHMS CLASSICS 873 Article "Gioseffo Zarlino", in The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, ed. Stanley Sadie. 20 vol. London, Macmillan Publishers Ltd. 1980. ISBN 1-56159-174-2 Gustave Reese, Music in the Renaissance. New York, W. W. Norton & Co. 1954. ISBN 0-393-09530-4 Gioseffo Zarlino, Istituzioni armoniche, tr. Oliver Strunk, in Source Readings in Music History. New York, W. W. Norton & Co. 1950. Le istituzioni armoniche Free scores by Gioseffo Zarlino at the International Music Score Library Project Free scores by Gioseffo Zarlino in the Choral Public Domain Library http://euromusicology.zoo.cs.uu.nl/dynaweb/tmiweb/z/@Generic__CollectionView. Encyclopædia Britannica. 1911
A part refers to a single strand or melody or harmony of music within a larger ensemble or a polyphonic musical composition. There are several senses in which the word is used: the physical copy of printed or written sheet music given to any individual instrument or voice. A musician's part does not contain instructions for the other players in the ensemble, only instructions for that individual; the music played by any group of musicians. This sense of "part" does not require a written copy of the music. Any individual melody that can be abstracted as continuous and independent from other notes being performed simultaneously. Within the music played by a single pianist, one can identify outer parts or an inner part. On the other hand, within a choir, "outer parts" and "inner parts" would refer to music performed by different people. See the section Polyphony and Part-writing below. A section in the large-scale form of a piece. See the section Musical form below. Part-writing is the composition of parts in consideration of counterpoint.
In the context of polyphonic composition the term voice may be used instead of part to denote a single melodic line or textural layer. The term is generic, is not meant to imply that the line should be vocal in character, instead referring to instrumentation, the function of the line within the counterpoint structure, or to register; the historical development of polyphony and part-writing is a central thread through European music history. The earliest notated pieces of music in Europe were gregorian chant melodies, it appears. Many histories of music trace the development of new rules for dissonances, shifting stylistic possibilities for relationships between parts. In some places and time periods, part-writing has been systematized as a set of counterpoint rules taught to musicians as part of their early education. One notable example is Johann Fux's Gradus ad Parnassum, which dictates a style of counterpoint writing that resembles the work of the famous Renaissance composer Palestrina; the standard for most Western music theory in the twentieth century is generalized from the work of Classical composers in the common practice period.
For example, a recent general music textbook states, Part writing is derived from four-voice chorales written by J. S. Bach; the late baroque era composer wrote a total of 371 harmonized chorales. Today most students' reference Albert Riemenschneider's 1941 compilation of Bach chorales. Polyphony and part-writing are present in many popular music and folk music traditions, although they may not be described as explicitly or systematically as they sometimes are in the Western tradition. In musical forms, a part may refer to a subdivision in the structure of a piece. Sometimes "part" is a title given by the composer or publisher to the main sections of a large-scale work oratorios. For example, Handel's Messiah, organized into Part I, Part II, Part II, each of which contains multiple scenes and one or two dozen individual arias or choruses. Other times, "part" is used to refer in a more general sense to any identifiable section of the piece; this is for example the case in the used ternary form schematized as A–B–A.
In this form the first and third parts are musically identical, or nearly so, while the second part in some way provides a contrast with them. In this meaning of part, similar terms used are strain, or turn. Partbook Cantus firmus Polyphonic strumming