An academic question

A place where discuss about secrets, tips and suggestions for practicing on congas and to improve your skill and technique ...

An academic question

Postby Tone » Thu Nov 25, 2010 3:27 pm

HI there highly learned friends ( David are you still lurking around here?)

I wonder if you could help me remember the name, or rather the adjective that qualifies rhythms that stress both the one and the subdivision next to it.
As in Fela's afrobeat xx..xx..xx..xx..
or Brazil aguere xx..x.x.
or Bravum xx..x..
and thousands of African rhythms...

I have it on the tip of my tongue for months. It is something like iambic ( but I think that is for Shakspearian poetry).
Also rhythms that don't do that also have a name. What is it?

many thanks
tone
User avatar
Tone
 
Posts: 191
Joined: Sun Jan 04, 2004 12:03 am
Location: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Re: An academic question

Postby burke » Fri Nov 26, 2010 2:23 am

iambic pentameter - 10 syllables to the line: de dum de dum de dum de dum de dum [weak/strong]
"There is a tide in the affairs of men"

Which helps you with your real question ... not one bit ... :wink:
Burke
burke
 
Posts: 750
Joined: Thu Sep 23, 2004 2:50 pm
Location: Nova Scotia

Re: An academic question

Postby davidpenalosa » Sat Nov 27, 2010 5:06 am

Tone wrote:I wonder if you could help me remember the name, or rather the adjective that qualifies rhythms that stress both the one and the subdivision next to it.
As in Fela's afrobeat xx..xx..xx..xx..


Hi Tone,
That's an excellent question. I call those strokes onbeats. 4/4 onbeats are the diametric opposite of offbeats:
..xx..xx..xx..xx

In African-based music fundamental pulses are often "doubled," grouped with the very next subdivision. For example, the common conga drum tumbao can play either a single tone on ponche, or a "doubled ponche."

In the case of onbeats, the pairs of strokes are made up of a stroke on the beat (first x), followed by a stroke off the beat (second x). While the offbeat strokes definitely propel the rhythm forward, the consistent strokes on-the-beat give the pattern a grounded quality.
-David
User avatar
davidpenalosa
 
Posts: 1151
Joined: Sun May 29, 2005 6:44 pm
Location: CA

Re: An academic question

Postby Tone » Sat Nov 27, 2010 2:32 pm

Hey Dave,

thanks for the answer, but I do believe there is an academic specific word for it.
Anyway it will come my way some day...

hope the books are doing well...I know they are.

All the best
tone
User avatar
Tone
 
Posts: 191
Joined: Sun Jan 04, 2004 12:03 am
Location: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Re: An academic question

Postby davidpenalosa » Sat Nov 27, 2010 5:21 pm

Tone wrote:. . . I do believe there is an academic specific word for it.


Oh, I understand what you were asking now, an established academic term. Please post it if you come across it. It would be very useful.
-David
User avatar
davidpenalosa
 
Posts: 1151
Joined: Sun May 29, 2005 6:44 pm
Location: CA

I'm thinking "cut time" or "2/4"

Postby Miguel7 » Fri Dec 24, 2010 3:26 am

I haven't studied iambic pentameter since college (lol) but in musical terms what you're talking about reminds me of the bell patterns in Puerto Rican plena. The bongocero plays that pattern exactly on the campana and the timbalero plays all four beats (the "xx" and the "..") but with emphasis on the first two.

Now in my study of plena I've read that the time signature is "2/4" or "cut time". That may not sound very academic but it seems to fit the rhythmic pattern you're talking about. Other genres with 2/4 time are merengue and samba. Now I don't know anything about samba, but the merengue rhythm on piano fits nicely with that beat as well (I'm talking about modern merengue, of course).

Hope that helps,
Miguel :D
Miguel7
 
Posts: 80
Joined: Thu Dec 23, 2010 7:36 pm

Re: I'm thinking "cut time" or "2/4"

Postby davidpenalosa » Wed Dec 29, 2010 11:17 pm

Miguel7 wrote:. . . plena I've read that the time signature is "2/4" or "cut time". That may not sound very academic but it seems to fit the rhythmic pattern you're talking about. Other genres with 2/4 time are merengue and samba.


The term cut-time (2/2) refers to a time signature used in a transcription, and in this type of music, does not necessarily indicate an inherent rhythmic structure. 2/4 is not cut-time by the way. 4/4 is common-time (often indicated by the letter C). Salsa and Latin jazz charts are often written in cut-time (2/2) when the tune has a fast tempo.

Most salsa and Latin jazz charts are in fact, written in cut-time (two measures per clave, two main beats per measure, the regular pulses represented by eighth-notes), but the 4/4 (or C) time signature is used. This has led to a lot of confusion concerning the music's basic structure, how it is counted. Some musicians are now using the cut-time signature instead of 4/4. For example, the great Cuban drummer "El Negro" uses cut-time in his instruction book.

Does this sound confusing? It is. Essentially, early conga drummers in the U.S. misappropriated musical terms and notation methods. "Street drummers" in this country typically use a combination of formal musical terms, Cuban terms and drummer slang. This is a subject that I have researched quite thoroughly, but I don't think it is the topic in this thread, so I will stop here. If you want to continue, perhaps we should begin a new thread.
-David
User avatar
davidpenalosa
 
Posts: 1151
Joined: Sun May 29, 2005 6:44 pm
Location: CA

Right on.

Postby Miguel7 » Thu Dec 30, 2010 11:05 pm

Thanks for your input. Given your knowledge of the "language" of music you might be the best one to answer the original question. It sounds like you've studied conga terminology a lot more extensively than I have, and if you ever did start a thread about it I think it would be a good read. :)

Anyway, you were right that cut time is 2/2 and not 2/4... my problems is I don't read sheet music (though I get the basic concept of what a time signature is and how it works). Also because of the way both merengue and plena are, I hear it all in 4/4. It seems to me that those time signatures are more or less interchangeable, especially is *salsa* (with its 2-measure clave and very "not-cut" rhythmic patterns lol) can be written in 2/2 time.
Miguel7
 
Posts: 80
Joined: Thu Dec 23, 2010 7:36 pm

Re: Right on.

Postby davidpenalosa » Thu Dec 30, 2010 11:15 pm

Miguel7 wrote:It seems to me that those time signatures are more or less interchangeable, . . .


Pretty much, as long as you tap your foot four times per clave cycle. The problems arise if you tap your foot eight times per clave in moderate to fast tempos.
-David
User avatar
davidpenalosa
 
Posts: 1151
Joined: Sun May 29, 2005 6:44 pm
Location: CA


Return to Congas Technique, Rhythms and Exercises

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests