Advanced Music Theory tutorials
4. Accentuated notes and pedal indications
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So, do like notes speak in different accents when you press a pedal, right?

  1. Topics of discussion
  2. Accentuated notes
  3. Pedal indications

1. Topics of discussion

In this tutorial, we will be learning all about dynamic volume markers. So, let's have some fun.

2. Accentuated notes

An accentuated note is a note that is to be played a bit louder than the other notes around it. How loud you ask? Well, about a volume level higher than the volume of the section. For example, if the section is in piano, an accentuated note should be played at a mezzo-piano level. You could also lean towards a mezzo-forte level, but never higher. As was the case with crescendo and decrescendo, the safe way to go about it is to lean towards a volume level difference so in this case, mezzo-piano.

So, how does one know that a note is an accentuated note? These notes have a sign under them (or over them), like this:

Accentuated notes

And here is the section played back. Pay attention to the accentuated notes:

As you can hear, there is a subtle difference between the notes.

3. Pedal indications

During some songs, you may notice that the musical sheet has an indication that contains the Ped. marker along with some lines like we will se below. This is only used in music sheets for pianists, since pianos have pedals. And pianos come with two or three different pedals. However, usually the pedal indications on the sheet refer to what is known as the sustain pedal, which is located on the right side of the piano, meaning you will use your right foot to press it. The sustain pedal is used to allow the notes to keep playing after you have lift your finger from the piano keys.

On a music sheet, you will encounter the following types of lines under the notes which are to be played using the sustain pedal. As I have already mentioned, you may also encounter the Ped. indicator at the beginning of these lines. Here is an example:

Pedal Indications

And here it is played back:

Notice how the notes with pedal indications can be heard even after the the finger used to press the piano key was raised.

And that about covers it for this tutorial. In the next one, we will start discussing about ways in which we can modify the length of a note. See you then.

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