Question About Swing Notation

Discussion in 'Playing and Technique' started by Dave B, Oct 25, 2008.

  1. Dave B

    Dave B Exit... Dual Stage Left Silver Supporting Member

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    When a tune, or section thereof, has an indication for a swing feel, it is my understanding that indicates what to do with its eighth notes, assuming the quarter notes and triplets are played straight. Do you swing the 16ht notes, too, or are they played straight?
     
  2. stevel

    stevel Member

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    No, you don't swing the 16th notes.

    Also, you don't play two sixteenths in the time of the "long" 8th note, and 2 faster sixteenths in the time of the "short" 8th note (which would end up being an 8th-8th-16th-16th triplet).

    You only swing the 16ths when you've got the indication for swung or shuffle 16ths, which has the similar symbol at the beginning of the music - 2 16ths = 1 long-short triplet 16th pair (and oddly, the only song coming to mind at this very moment is Aerosmith's "Rag Doll"!).

    And when 16ths are swung, 8ths are regular.

    Seems like it shouldn't be that way, but that's the way it is.

    Now, that's not to say you couldn't have one section of a song with swung 8ths, and another section with swung 16ths - and of course mixed in with straight versions of either. Just less typical.

    HTH,
    Steve
     
  3. Dave B

    Dave B Exit... Dual Stage Left Silver Supporting Member

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    It sure does!

    But since I unknowingly opened a can of worms I didn't know existed, you answered more than I envisioned, which is great. And I, in turn, learned a good bit more about the whole notation convention involving swing. This will undoubtedly make it easier when I see it, as hopefully I will avoid the confused state I would have been in without your all-around answer. :AOK
     
  4. stevel

    stevel Member

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    Cool.

    Steve
     

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