Guitar Techniques - - LESSON: ROCKSCHOOL -

In mu­sIc, tIme is re­ferred to as tempo and the tempo of the piece of writ­ten mu­sic is stated at the be­gin­ning of the chart. In most mod­ern gui­tar charts the tempo is de­noted nu­mer­i­cally in ‘beats per minute’. the BPm of a piece usu­ally refers to the num­ber of quar­ter-notes, or ‘crotch­ets’ per minute; that re­cur­ring pulse at which you nat­u­rally tap your foot along with. A song at 60bpm would nat­u­rally be the same speed as a tick­ing clock and var­i­ous tempi can be ac­cessed by de­creas­ing or in­creas­ing that num­ber.

some­times tempi are writ­ten more tra­di­tion­ally us­ing Ital­ian de­scrip­tions to de­note the gen­eral speed of a piece. A piece around 60-76bpm would be called Ada­gio which means ‘slowly or at ease’, An­dante is ‘walk­ing pace’ at around 76–108bpm, and mod­er­ato lit­er­ally means ‘mod­er­ately’ at 108–120bpm. At the quicker end of the scale we have Al­le­gretto which de­scribes a ‘mod­er­ately fast tempo of 112–120bpm and Al­le­gro is a quicker, and more en­er­getic 120–168bpm.

It is also pos­si­ble to speed up or slow down the tempo within the piece of mu­sic. the di­rec­tion Ac­cellerando, means that you should grad­u­ally in­crease the speed of the piece. this is usu­ally shown on the score in the ab­bre­vi­ated form //ac­cel.// and is placed above the score with a hor­i­zon­tal dot­ted lined in­di­cat­ing the sec­tion to be sped up.

Ri­tar­dando is the ex­act op­po­site and

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