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Glossary

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
Take
An attempt at making a recording. Sometimes recordings are made using complete takes, where the perfomers record an entire song from beginning to end, and on very rare occasions the first complete take is enough. More often, smaller takes will be recorded and later stitched together, or complete takes will be edited together in complex ways. These decisions generally rest with the producer.

Tempo
The speed at which a piece of music is played is referred to as its tempo. For example most dance tracks are at around 120bpm (beats per minute).

Tenth
The interval of a compound third, in other words, an octave plus a third.

Third
The interval between two notes which are three notes apart on the scale. The notes could either be one after the other in melody, such as in the start of "A Day In The Life," or both together in harmony, such as in the first note of  "Bye Bye Love".

Time Signature
A fractional number placed at the beginning of a composition to indicate the number of beats in each bar and the value of each beat. Examples include 2/4, 4/4, and 6/8. The first of the two numbers indicates the number of beats in a bar, and the second number indicates the type of note that equals one beat. 2/4 time signifies two beats in every measure, with each beat having the time value of a "crochet".

Tonic
The "home" note, or chord, of a key or scale - the "mice" in "Three Blind Mice" is the tonic note, and the tonic chord is where the vast majority of songs end unless they're fading out.

Treble
Treble refers to those instruments or vocals that are the highest pitched members of a family.

Trilling
The repeated playing of two notes in rapid succession. This technique can be used as a substitute for sustaining a note in those instruments, such as the piano, which cannot naturally sustain.

Twelve bar blues
A form of song construction that relies upon a fixed sequence of chords occurring over twelve bars. Its form comes from a three-line verse or chorus. Each line consists of four bars (3 x 4 bars equals 12). Many of the rock 'n' roll songs of the 1950s followed the twelve bar blues chord progression.





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