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Here is a link to a very famous and well known piece written and played in 5/4 time, which is found in Peters Pearls #120 - Identifying the Time Signature of a piece of music:


For a truly classic example of       5/4   Time here is   
                           Take Five        by Dave Brubeck

Jazz legend Dave Brubeck’s “Take Five” is popular music’s most easily recognizable song that features 5 quarter notes per bar.

This catchy and sleek tune is written so well that its unconventional meter is hardly detectable to listeners unless they have a good musical background.

To view Peters Pearl #119 - Time Signatures, click this link to open it in a new window:

Here's another song I have played, Blue Moon where I have used the technique described above.  I have set up a Clarinet as the Monophonic voice; and Grand Piano as the Polyphonic voice.  I always find it is more effective to have a continuous sounding voice as the Monophonic one playing the melody.  By that I mean a voice which when you hold the note down it continues to sound until you lift your finger off the key.  So this can include Organ sounds, like Hammond; Strings; Piano Accordion; any Woodwind or Brass instrument etc.  And then to have the Polyphonic voice as a 'percussive' instrument, like Piano or Vibraphone etc.  Playing a counter-melody with a 'percussive' instrument makes the counter-melody really stand out as the essence of playing a percussive instrument is to hit the notes sharply.

It's in the second part of the tune that I have done this.  If you listen very carefully, both Clarinet and Piano are playing together for the melody.  Then so long as I hold that top note down, the Clarinet will keep sounding while I play the counter melody notes underneath that top note with my 'free' fingers. It's only the Piano that plays the counter-melody notes.

Click the LINK below to hear the song. 

Blue Moon (MP3)
Here is a You Tube Link, which will enable you in less than 30 minutes to be able to Perform Jazz, using the 2-5-1 progression, but by coupling it with what is known as the Pentatonic Hand Grip.

No theory is necessary, but you can find out more about the Pentatonic Scale by reading from the beginning

               Peters Pearls    No__118___The Pentatonic Scale

Click on this link to open the Pentatonic Scale Pearl, in a new window:

But as I say, no theory is necessary, because this video shows you how to produce an impressive result with just a special placement of your fingers on the keyboard!    Try it!     You will be truly amazed.


Peter's Pearls / Re: No__118___The Pentatonic Scale
« Last post by Peter Anderson on Today at 04:19:49 PM »
Here is another You Tube Link, which will enable you in less than 30 minutes to be able to Perform Jazz, using the 2-5-1 progression, and what is known as the Pentatonic Hand Grip.

No theory is necessary, as this video shows you how to produce an impressive result with just special placement of your fingers on the keyboard!    Try it!     You will be truly amazed.

…….and you thought that knowing about the Pentatonic scale wasn’t necessary!

In the post above I have called the MONOPHONIC section LEAD Voice as this is what it is called on my Yamaha AR Organ.  I'm sure this will be called something else on other makes of keyboard.  In the Genos Reference Manual they say this about Voices:

.. so looks as though there isn't a specific section for Monophonic Voices as any Polyphonic voice can be turned into  a Monophonic one.

Here is a video where he shows quite clearly how he plays the melody with a MONOPHONIC voice (the Flugelhorn) and playing with it he has a Saxophone as a POLYPHONIC voice.  You can see him playing notes under the melody with his other fingers .. and these notes only give a saxophone sound.  Note that he does have to 'hold' that top note while he is doing this, otherwise the Flugelhorn will suddenly 'jump' down to a lower note he is playing.  Another thing that might not be quite clear in this video is that the melody he is playing does actually sound with both the Flugelhorn and the Saxophone.  As the volumes of these two instruments can be set independently, one can set the Monophonic voice to be louder than the Polyphonic one.  Then the melody will be predominantly the Monophonic instrument.

Mixing Polyphonic and Mono Voices

Of course over the years the keyboard manufacturers have improved their sampling of 'acoustic' instruments so they are getting more and more to sound like the real thing.

I have been looking at the Genos Reference Manual, where they explain how they have used technology for playing acoustic instruments authentically.  Here is a few things they have to say about their Voice section:

AEM Technology

S.Art (Super Articulation)

S.Art2 (Super Articulation2)




So that is half the battle of playing acoustic instruments authentically.  To have keyboards that sound like the real thing in the first place.  The other half, of course, is the way you play them.
Some interesting thoughts on how to play a guitar 'authentically' on a keyboard.  For starters, did you know that a guitar is 'tuned' to the notes  EADGBE?  Unlike a keyboard, chords on a guitar can only be formed by making those notes 'higher' (by pressing on the frets).  So if playing a 'C' chord you can't drop that A down to a G; or that D down to a C.  The only way is up!  Bear this in mind when playing a guitar piece on a keyboard.

How to Play Guitar Parts on Keyboards with Daniel Fisher

Jokes / A simple numbers one, for your young grandchildren
« Last post by Peter Anderson on Today at 09:15:22 AM »
Why was six afraid of seven?

Because seven eight nine!
Hugh's Views on ... / Combining Polyphonic and Monophonic Voices
« Last post by Hugh Wallington on November 11, 2019, 11:26:08 PM »
On my AR Organ I can choose Voices like Piano, Strings, Guitar etc. and all these are 'Polyphonic' ie. if I play two or more notes on the keyboard then these instruments will sound multiple notes.  But I have one section called LEAD VOICE that plays Monophonic notes ie. it will only play one note at a time.  If I play multiple notes then only the top note I press will sound.  I had originally understood that these were for SOLO instruments, and indeed the direct choices I have in that block are VIOLIN, FLUTE, OBOE and TRUMPET, all of which I would expect to be playing a melody 'on their own' and not have several of the same instrument playing multiple notes.

On my AR, these LEAD voices are 'richer sounding' than the same voice chosen from the Voice sections.  This is because they can be 'tuned' to make them slightly sharp and make them stand out; and they also have a greater volume.

But in that same section I have a Tab I can press to choose any of the voices available to me.  Like Piano, or Guitar.  Of course, if I do this I can only 'sound' one note at a time, so I have to play the melody with just the one note.  This reminds me of a Yamaha Keyboard I had years ago when I had my Farfisa organ (yes, I did have a keyboard many years ago).  When it was set up to play the whole keyboard (ie. no split) it would play multiple notes (ie, it was polyphonic), but as soon as I 'split' the keyboard to play chords with Styles on the left of the split .. the right of the split became Monophonic and would only play one note at a time.  Keyboards have come a long way since then, but I have always thought that a Monophonic voice was a let-down in technology.

I couldn't have been more wrong, as I want to show you in this topic.  In the DEMO below I have first set up a Piano Accordion and a Grand Piano from Voice 1 and Voice 2, so they are both Polyphonic voices.  Listen to how the notes I play sound with both instruments.  I have played it like this twice.

In the next part of the DEMO I have set up the Piano Accordion as a LEAD Voice (so it's MONOPHONIC); and the Grand Piano as a normal Voice (so it's POLYPHONIC).  When I play notes you can hear the two instruments sounding together .. but when I reach that top note I hold that note down and play other notes underneath that top note with my other fingers.

Now the essence of the LEAD Voice is that being MONOPHONIC, it will only sound the top note I am playing (and holding).  So those other notes I am playing underneath with the POLYPHONIC Grand Piano will sound as Grand Piano without the Accordion sound.

Have a listen to what I am on about.  Click the below.

DEMO of two Polyphonic Voices being played together; followed by what you hear when one is Monophonic and the other is Polyphonic

Using this technique you can play little 'counter melodies' underneath a top melody note which you are holding down.

Now listen to this piece.  None of it has been 'multi-tracked'.  The little counter melodies that you hear are by using the technique above.
To reiterate, the melody is played with the Piano Accordion .. and Grand Piano, together; but the little counter-melodies are Grand Piano only.

Click the below to listen.

I will never again think that MONOPHONIC Voices are a let-down in technology.  I realise now that if a Monophonic Voice is played with a Polyphonic Voice one can use the technology to enhance one's playing by putting in little counter-melodies that sound with only one Voice.

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