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Thread: atonal notation

  1. #1
    Senior Member Phil loves classical's Avatar
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    Default atonal notation

    I have a good idea how to put accidentals on tonal music. How do you put accidentals on atonal? Any guidelines? When there are notes a semitone apart, I would try to call them C# and D instead of Db and D natural for example, since I would it is easier to see the different note values. Is that right?


    I hear when ascending, should use sharps, and descending use flats, but I noticed Schoenberg doesn't quite follow this rule.


    Also in some instances I see B and E flats are used, the rest are all sharps.
    Last edited by Phil loves classical; Apr-16-2019 at 03:19.
    "Forgive me, Majesty. I'm a vulgar man. But I assure you, my music is not.“ Mozart

  2. #2
    Member mikeh375's Avatar
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    Phil,

    In my experience, practicality in the spelling from the players p.o.v should play a major role, likewise, note resolution.
    Avoid awkward and unusual intervals between notes as often as possible and go for the most direct spelling you can. It's not always possible to avoid some awkwardness but anything to mitigate comprehension is welcome.
    Sometimes it's just not worth being too pedantic about spelling in atonal fields imv.
    Last edited by mikeh375; Apr-16-2019 at 11:03.

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  4. #3
    Senior Member Tikoo Tuba's Avatar
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    I prefer just one mark and this is the ' and denotes a flat . It is small .

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    It doesn't really matter in general, but for certain instruments different notation would give an idea for a different way of playing. For example the C# above middle C on a violin would lead me to play it with my third finger, while a Db would imply playing it with my fourth.

  6. #5
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    It doesn't matter how you notate using traditional notation.
    It represents rank-2 regular musical temperament - 7 out 12 pitches. The rest are considered alterations.

    You want to compose in 12 equal - rank-1 temperament. All notes are considered unique, there are no alterations.
    It is easy to see why traditional notation is incapable of creating readable chromatic music.
    (Btw, Schoenberg was one of the first composers that experimented with graphical notation, similar to what you see in modern DAW piano roll editors.)

    Something interesting - alternative music notations for 12 equal - http://musicnotation.org/systems/

    More on temperaments -

    http://oro.open.ac.uk/21510/1/X_System.pdf
    https://oro.open.ac.uk/21504/1/tuningcontinua.pdf

  7. #6
    Senior Member Kjetil Heggelund's Avatar
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    I would notate it in a-minor

  8. #7
    Senior Member Bwv 1080's Avatar
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    I would defer to having intervals appear correctly - so say a 3rd of some flavor is space-space or line-line then prioritize ascending sharps or descending flats

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