Ma: But. Used with other words, e.g.
lento ma non troppo, slow but not too slowly.
Baton used by a
drum major in a
marching or military band. Usually large and ostentatious so as to be easily
Renaissance choral piece, usually unaccompanied.
"Greater". A term used to describe certain
chords and the
Mode. A key based on a
major scale is called a major
key. The pattern for
the major scale is:
Major chord: A
triad composed of a
Major Scale: A
where the half-steps fall
between the third
and fourth, and the
identical to the Ionian Mode.
Direction... perform this passage
in a melancholic way.
Mancando: (Ita) Fading away
Mandola: Same as
Also a member of the Lute family dating back in Italy to the 17th century. It
looks like a small pear half with a short stem. The
played with a plectrum on its four
courses of six strings Related to the Mandolin are the alto
tuned Mendocello, the
Mandolone, the Mandobass, and the Contrabass.
Mandore: Also known as mandora and
in Italian. It is a stringed
developed from the medieval
Gittern. The strings were made of gut and were
played with a plectrum.
Mannheim School: A
group of German symphonic
composers whose style
including extended crescendos (called steamrollers)
and melodies that are arpeggiated upward, (called rockets).
Maracas: Like a baby rattle: originating in Latin America, its rattling sound is made
from seeds or a similar material enclosed in ball made of wood, metal, synthetic
materials, or originally gourds. Usually played in pairs. Part of the
Marcato: Emphasized, heavily
marching, such as in a parade or procession.
Marimba: Looks like the
Xylophone but has resonators under each bar. It is a member of
the percussion family and can be quite large. Originally from Africa and is
popular in Latin America.
of the Roman Catholic Church service, usually just the
but sometimes also the proper.
Measure: A group of
beats containing a primary accent
and one or more
secondary accents, indicated by the placement of
staff. The space between two
Medesimo: (Ita) The same.
built on this degree is
iii in the major scale, III in the
scale, and III+ in the harmonic
Medieval: The period prior to the
Renaissance, c. 500-1450, marking the
early Christian church.
Melody: In general,
a succession of musical
tones. It represents the
linear or horizontal aspect of
Meno: (Ita) Less.
Meno mosso: Less
Meter: The structure
of notes in a regular pattern of
unaccented beats within a
measure, indicated at the beginning of a composition by a
See also time signature.
Meter signature: The numbers placed at
the beginning of a composition to indicate the
meter of the
music. The upper
number indicates the beats in a measure; the lower number
tells what kind of a notes will receive one beat.
Metronome: Invented by Maelzel in 1816,
the instrument is used to indicate the exact
tempo of a
composition. An indication such as M.M. 60 indicates that the pendulum, with a
weight at the bottom, makes 60 beats per minute. A slider is moved up and down
the pendulum to decrease and increase the
tempo. M.M. = 80
means that the time value of a quarter note is the equivalent of one pendulum
beat when the slider is set at 80.
Mezzo: Half, Medium
Medium loud. Not as loud a forte.
Mezzo piano: Medium soft.
degree of the
Middle Ages: European historical period
between roughly A.D. 500 and 1450.
Middle C: The
C in the middle of the
grand staff, and near the middle of
Digital Interface is a set of
command protocols for storing, controlling and transmitting information
Note events, timing events,
pitch bends, pedal
information, etc applied to one
instrument have the same effect on others
connected via MIDI cables.
designation for certain intervals and
scales. A key based on a minor
scale is called a minor
key. The three types
of minor scales include
natural, harmonic, and
which is used infrequently in choral music. The patterns for
harmonic scales are:
Misterioso: (Ita) Mysteriously.
scale pattern is that of playing
G on the white keys of a
consisting of set intervals of whole and
half steps. The primary modes
and Phrygian. More generally, the term refers to the
patterns upon which medieval
music was structured, the patterns which preceded
the development of major and
Modal: Pertaining to
Moderato: (Ita) Moderate tempo.
in the 20th century, or contemporary music.
change keys, the movement from one
tonic centre to another.
Molto: (Ita) Very. Used with other terms, e.g. molto
unison song with
Music based upon a single
written in a single melodic line, as opposed to
"Morsel". A musical
work or composition.
consisting of an alteration (once or twice)
of the written note
by playing the one immediately below it (lower mordent), or
above it (upper, or inverted, mordent) and then playing the
Morendo: (Ita) Gradually decreasing in volume;
Morna: Set in a
with a moderate 4/4 meter this
is sometimes described as the blues
music of the Cape Verde
Islands. Performed by a
singer backed up by an
band consisting of
Mosso: (Ita) Rapid. Meno
mosso, less rapid. Piu mosso, more rapid.
Motet: A choral
composition, usually on a religious text.
Motif: A short
idea, or melodic
that runs through a piece.
Motive: A short
Moto: (Ita) Motion. Con moto,
Mouth Organ: See
Movable Do: The system of
in which Do changes to
accommodate the key, e.g. in the key of
Do is C; in
E. In the key of
Do is C (relative
major); in the
self-contained segment of a larger work. Found in works such as
These are long barrel
drums found in Southern India. They are double headed
and tuned an octave apart. They are held on the players lap and played with the
heel of the hand alternating with the finger tips.
Musette: There are a few meanings to this word: a small French
bagpipe, a small
oboe or a
reed stop on the organ.
organization of sounds with some degree of
specifically that of Richard
Wagner and his successors.
person with an ability to perform a
either with an
instrument or his or
|While on a recent train
journey I noticed the person sitting opposite me appeared to be
playing an imaginary musical instrument. I guessed it was the
Sax but he
told he was a Piper
and was trying to learn a new piece. I asked that as he performed this
exercise did he actually hear the
notes in his head. He said he did.
It occurred to me that when you are able do this is this when you know
that you truly are a
musician? What do you think?
Musical Saw: A handsaw played with a
the smooth edge. The player can strike it with a mallet while bending the blade.
As the saw blade bends the
study of music and
Music theory: The study of how
music is put together.
composed by manipulating recorded sounds, specifically
generated real-world sounds.