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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Ogre in the Playground
    gomipile's Avatar

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    Jul 2010

    Default Fastest to write musical notation?

    What's the fastest easy to write with musical notation?

    Assume the notional writer has sheets of completely blank white paper and a pen. No rulers, staff marking tools, or stencils, etc. are allowed. The writer has average penmanship skills, but no particular artistic skills. So, the writer cannot be assumed to be capable of drawing a line across the paper that is or looks straight, and drawing a staff of lines is basically impossible.

    So, given all of that, what musical notation would you choose if such a writer with those tools was your only choice of musical scribe/transcriptionist?
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    where is the atropal? and does it have a listed LA?

  2. - Top - End - #2
    Firbolg in the Playground
    Bohandas's Avatar

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    Feb 2016

    Default Re: Fastest to write musical notation?

    theoretically if everything was within one octave you could just use linear notes laveled with the letters A-G and sharp/flat signs
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    Pixie in the Playground
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    Jun 2023

    Default Re: Fastest to write musical notation?

    Hm. I don't think such a thing has been standardised, but I could imagine a system using the letters A-G (assuming the scribe has perfect pitch) with sharp and flat symbols, dashes for "hold for x counts", dots (or similar) for "silence for x counts," and "hats" above or below the letters indicating which octave the note is in. That seems the most instinctual to me, anyway.

    You'd have to add a little bit of complexity to indicate the tempo, and account for multiple simultaneous notes (stack the letters on top of each other, maybe, and use vertical lines a little like proper staves do?), but as a very basic and easy-to-draw framework, I think it's a start. (That being said, the scribe would still have to be extremely talented to keep up with the music while writing and get the whole thing on the first try.)

  4. - Top - End - #4
    Ogre in the Playground
    Join Date
    Nov 2008

    Default Re: Fastest to write musical notation?

    Depends on how complex and long the music is.

    On the simple end, a melody alone, I'd work in pitch duration pairs e.g. "dot[ted] quarter [note] D, eighth [note] high C#, half [note] high A;", bracketed bits absent but implied, and the semicolon indicates the end of a measure.

    Slightly more complex music gets a row or three below the melody line with a second melody line and/or chord notation.

    For very structured but very complex music it's less a notation and more plain language instructions on how to reconstruct the piece with a sheet music typesetting program - describing fragments of the music as variables, and explaining how to reuse and modify them throughout the work, and only rarely falling back on spelling it out note by note.
    Last edited by Bucky; 2023-08-14 at 01:44 PM.
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