64 terms

S3 Exam Revision

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Reel
Scottish Dance, fast with lots of running quavers
Fanfare
A short piece played on trumpets (or other instruments) usually at some important occasion.
Concerto
A composition for orchestra and a soloist
Slow Air
A slow traditional Scottish melody in the style of a song. Usually played on fiddle or bagpipes.
Walking Bass
A moving bass line with notes usually of the same value. It often moves by step, but not always so.
Change of Key
A move from one key to another.
Drone
One note, held on or repeated in the bass.
Vamp
A rhythmic accompaniment with a bass note played on the beat and a chord off the beat.
Canon
Strict imitation. After one part starts to play or sing a melody, another part enters shortly afterwards with exactly the same melody.
Rondo
A B A C A. A form where the first section (A) comes back between contrasting sections.
Minuet and Trio
The minuet is a graceful French dance with three beats in a bar. The trio is a contrasting minuet after which the first minuet is repeated.
Rallentando
The music gradually slows down.
Soprano
The highest range of female voice.
Alto
The lowest female voice.
Tenor
A high adult male voice.
Bass
The lowest male voice.
Folk Song
A traditional song from a specific country.
Waulking Song
A rhythmic song sung in Gaelic by the women in the Western Isles of Scotland while they waulked woollen cloth to soften and shrink it. Sometimes the singing is led by a soloist with a response from the rest of the women.
Musical
A musical play which has speaking, singing and dancing and is performed on a stage. In recent years the musical has seen a revival and may now deal with very dramatic stories and contain no dialogue.
Opera
A drama set to music with soloists, chorus, acting, and orchestral accompaniment. It is normally performed in a theatre.
Bothy Ballad
A folk song, usually with many verses, from north-east Scotland. It tells a story of rural or farming life.
Gaelic Psalm
Sung in Gaelic in the Free Church this is an unaccompanied song. The precentor sings the melody with the congregation following in close imitation.
Scat Singing
Nonsense words, syllables and sounds are improvised (made up) by the singer. Sometimes the singer is imitating the sounds of instruments. Used mainly in jazz singing.
Pop Song
A style of popular music played by a group of musicians and singers.
Minor
The music sounds in a minor key (can sound sad)
Pentatonic
Any five-note scale. In practice, the most common one is that on which much folk music is based, particularly Scottish and Celtic.
Chromatic
A stepwise series of notes built up entirely of semitones.
Ornament
A device used to decorate a melody by adding extra notes, often short and add melodic and rhythmic interest.
Sequence
A melodic phrase which is immediately repeated at a higher or lower pitch.
Variation
When the main theme or tune is developed, perhaps by adding extra notes. It may change from major to minor or vice versa, changing harmony, rhythm, time signature, move the theme to the bass, etc.
Simple Time
The beat is not dotted and can be subdivided into multiples of two (eg 4/4 = four crotchet beats in a bar and each beat can be divided into two quavers).
Compound Time
The beat is divided into groups of three pulses. A good example is a Jig.
Baroque
1600-1750 approximately. Bach and Handel were two of the composers from this period, much of the music has a polyphonic texture (contrapuntal)
Romantic
In music, the period 1810-1900 approximately, which followed the Classical era. Music has rich harmonies and large orchestration.
Samba
A very lively, syncopated dance with two beats in a bar in which a set of percussion instruments provides the foundation. It originated in Brazil.
Discord
A chord in which certain notes clash. Discord was used sparingly in music up to the end of the 19th century, in order to add tension,
Cluster
A term used to describe a group of notes played on a keyboard instrument with the palm of the hand or even with the forearm.
Repetition
A musical idea is heard more than once. See Ostinato, Riff.
Scotch Snap
A very short accented note before a longer note in Scottish Music.
Round
Each part sings or plays the same melody, entering one after the other. When they reach the end they start again, eg 'London's Burning'.
Syncopation
Strongly accented notes playing off or against the beat and occurs in all kinds of music, particularly in Jazz
Accelerando
The music gradually becomes faster.
Wind Band
A band with woodwind, brass and percussion instruments playing music composed for the concert hall rather than for marching.
Brass Band
A band of brass instruments and percussion. (Extended definition - A brass band uses a separate family of instruments, eg cornet, flugel horn, tenor horn and baritone.)
Gamelan
A type of percussion orchestra found in Indonesia. The instruments are mainly metal, tuned, percussion items and the music is built up in layers.
Latin Percussion Ensemble
A set of percussion instruments playing music from Latin America, especially Brazil and Cuba. Rhythm is the most important element.
Swing
A jazz style which started in the 1930s. The numbers and types of instruments in the big bands increased during this period, through the influence of swing.
Chamber Music
Music written for a small instrumental ensemble with one player to a part.
Symphony
A large work for orchestra usually in four movements. In the Classical period the movements were normally fast, slow, minuet and trio, fast.
Ghanaian Drum Ensemble
A group of percussion instruments, drums, shakes and bells, which are played together. They perform music from the West African country of Ghana.
Ceilidh Band
A band which plays music for people to dance to. The instruments may include fiddle, accordion, piano, bass and drum kit as well as modern accompanying instruments such as electric guitar and keyboards.
Orchestra
A group with four main sections: strings, woodwind, brass and percussion. Strings include 1st and 2nd violins, violas, cellos and double basses. Woodwind comprises flutes (including piccolo), oboes, cor anglais, clarinets, bassoons, bass clarinets, double bassoons. Brass includes French horns, trumpets, trombones and tubas. Percussion instruments include timpani (kettle drums) and other instruments which are hit or struck, eg snare drum, bass drum and xylophone. Other instruments, such as the harp, are sometimes included.
Jazz Group
A group which performs jazz. Instruments could include drum kit, bass, piano, saxophone and trumpet.
Broken Chord
The notes of a chord are played separately.
Imitation
Where the melody is immediately copied higher or lower in another part. It need not be an exact copy.
Major Key
The music sounds in a major key (can sound happy)
4 beats in the bar
A piece with 4 beats in a bar (like a march)
Drum Fill
A rhythmic decoration played on a drum kit.
Anacrusis
The notes which appear before the first strong beat of a musical phrase particularly at the start of a piece. It sounds as an upbeat.
Blues
Started as Black American folk music developing from spirituals and work-songs. Blues music is often in 4/4 time and is mostly patterned on a 12-bar structure.
Rubato
A direction to the performer which allows freedom to change speed, thus allowing more expression.
Octaves
The distance between a note and the nearest note with the same name, eg C to C'. A piece played in octaves will play the same notes simultaneously.
Harmony
The sound of two or more notes made at the same time.
Allegro
Played in a quick and lively tempo
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