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Measures containing two 8ths notes? What is this tom-foolery?

Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by Aaron Saunders, Jul 30, 2003.


  1. Aaron Saunders

    Aaron Saunders

    Apr 27, 2002
    Ontario
    This issue has probably been addressed in this forum many, many times, and I would do a search -- but what would I search for? Anyway. I was lookinng through this month's Bass Player's Woodshed and they have this "Cool Groove" thing (this is the first issue I've ever bought, so forgive me if they always have that) and the first measure contains 2 eight notes. No rests, nothing else -- just 2 eight notes. It's in 4/4, and all of the other measures are fine. Is it just assumed that there are rests? I don't exactly have a lot of "training" in sheet music, so I don't know all the things that people writing just assume you should know. Forgive me if this has been addressed recently, I'm just very flustered and I can't think of a search string that wouldn't bring up countless piles of unrelated junk through which I would have to sift to find the answer.
     
  2. Nick Gann

    Nick Gann Talkbass' Tubist in Residence

    Mar 24, 2002
    Silver Spring, MD
    That is called a pickup measure. It leads into the rest of the piece. It is pretty common. Sometimes it is written as a full measure with rests.

    Since it is in 4/4, it would be counted:

    4 & 1 & 2 &.... etc.

    It is just a 4 & added on to the beginning of the piece.
     
  3. JimK

    JimK

    Dec 12, 1999
    Gov-
    It would be pretty boring if everything began on the "1"...wouldn't it?
     
  4. If I remember correctly, the extra beats in the pickup measure are stolen from the last measure, but it has been awhile, so I may be wrong.
     
  5. Nick Gann

    Nick Gann Talkbass' Tubist in Residence

    Mar 24, 2002
    Silver Spring, MD
    I've never heard that before, or seen it in any music. As far as I know, the pickup measure has nothing to do with the end measure. As always, I may be wrong. As far as I know, pickup measures only serve to give a lead into the melody or song.
     
  6. Jeff Moote

    Jeff Moote Supporting Member

    Oct 11, 2001
    Beamsville, ON, Canada
    I know what he's talking about. He's right, but so are you. Both are possible, but in many compositions (esp. with repeats) the pickup is time taken from the last measure (i.e if the pickup is 4&, then the last measure is only 1&2&3&). This is common in baroque.

    Anyhow, you both had the idea.
     
  7. Nick Gann

    Nick Gann Talkbass' Tubist in Residence

    Mar 24, 2002
    Silver Spring, MD
    Ah, the repeats make sense. I do remember in vamping/repeating sections that happening, with the lead in repeating the beginning. I was thinking of the end, like the actual last measure of the song being short.

    Hmm, cool.
     
  8. Pacman

    Pacman Layin' Down Time Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 1, 2000
    Omaha, Nebraska
    Endorsing Artist: Roscoe Guitars, DR Strings, Aguilar Amplification
    This is true in classical compostition, and in the 'rules' of theory.

    By the way, the pickup measure is called an anacrusis. (anna - CREW - sis)
     
  9. Jeff Moote

    Jeff Moote Supporting Member

    Oct 11, 2001
    Beamsville, ON, Canada
    Cool! A new term :)
     
  10. JimK

    JimK

    Dec 12, 1999
    Wow...thanks, Packer.
    I can't wait to drop that on the guys/gals in the Country band I play with.
     
  11. jazzbo

    jazzbo

    Aug 25, 2000
    San Francisco, CA
    I must admit, I did not know this term.

    And how tremendously apropos is it that my drummer's name is Anna?? It works on sooo many levels!
     
  12. JimK

    JimK

    Dec 12, 1999
    Anna Banana, eh?

    I will use "...what this section needs is a caesura"* whenever the opportunity presents itself.
    That always gets a "*** are you talkin' about".

    *(Stolen from Eddie & The Crusiers).