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Music & Creative Arts

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Examining the 12-Bar Blues Pattern

If you've ever spent any time around a serious blues musician or music aficionado, you've probably heard the phrase "12 bar blues" tossed about. A bar is a musical phrase, a way of measuring the music [more…]

Trembling Tremolos on the Piano

Although piano tremolos and trills sound much the same, there are differences between how they are notated and how they sound. A trill occurs when you flutter your fingers very quickly between two notes [more…]

Discovering Italian High Renaissance Artists

If you are familiar with any Renaissance, it is with the Italian High Renaissance. In this article, you encounter names of master artists that have become household words. Now you can put those names in [more…]

The Music Attorney: The Top Spot on Your Songwriting Team

A music attorney should be one of the first business associates you add to your songwriting team. A music attorney can be your best friend and ally, so hiring your attorney in the beginning will start [more…]

Watercolor Painting Technique: Using Wax to Preserve White

Typically, you paint on white watercolor paper. And ideally, you save the white of the paper to serve as the white in the painting. That is, you paint around the white areas, leaving the white paper to [more…]

Concert Pitch and Transposition

The piano is a well-loved music composition tool for a reason. Not only do the piano's 88 keys contain virtually all the notes you'll ever need to create a solid foundation for a full orchestral composition [more…]

Understanding an Opera's Libretto

Like a stage play or a movie, an opera starts with words — thousands of words. An opera's words are called its libretto, whereas, in a stage play, the words are called the [more…]

Examining Rests in Musical Notation

A musical rest is simply a pause in which you play nothing. You'll see rests all over your sheet music; it's inevitable. The beat goes on — remember it's a constant pulse — but you pause. This pause can [more…]

Discovering the Timpani Drum in Classical Music

Ah, thou noble Timpanist, how well and proudly dost thou perch above thy orchestra. There you sit enthroned amidst thy noble drums, a hundred feet above the silent decks, striding along the deep, as if [more…]

Processing Gain-based Rock Guitar Effects

In the world of rock guitar, the terms fuzz,distortion, and overdrive are often used interchangeably. Regardless of what you call it, to make your guitar solo rock, it must produce one or more of the core [more…]

The Music Theory behind Acoustics and Harmonics

If you were to break music down into pure mathematics, you would end up dealing with acoustics and harmonics. An instrument's acoustics and harmonics define that instrument's unique sound; they're also [more…]

The Nuts and Bolts of Electric Guitars

Recognizing the different parts of the guitar is important, but knowing what makes an electric guitar work as a whole is essential to differentiate it from, say, a bassoon, accordion, or kazoo. Not that [more…]

The Birth of Impressionism: Manet and Monet

Impressionism began to take shape in the 1860s on the canvases of Édouard Manet, Claude Monet, and Pierre-Auguste Renoir. But the actual birth of Impressionism was probably the summer of 1869, when Monet [more…]

Discovering the Baroque Masters: Caravaggio and His Followers

Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio, known more simply as Caravaggio (1571–1610), was the greatest and most influential painter of the Baroque style. He was also a quick-tempered Bohemian who was often jailed [more…]

Alleviating Performance Anxiety through Preparation

Performance anxiety is a big problem among performers of all kinds and at all levels of experience. Finding ways of dealing with anxiety and turning nerves and adrenaline into positive forces in your performance [more…]

Four Painters You Can Learn From

You already know famous painters like Leonardo da Vinci, Georgia O'Keeffe, and Claude Monet; well, here are four well-known artists that you may not be so familiar with. Look them all up and don't pass [more…]

Debunking the Beatles Conspiracy: "Paul Is Dead"

One of the strangest events surrounding the Beatles was the rumor in 1966 that band member Paul McCartney was dead. Not only was he dead, but was replaced with a double. More amazing was that the band [more…]

Constructing Your Manga Plot

Following are the basic stages that a manga-ka (a manga artist) uses to create an original plot. The basic stages are widely embraced by the manga-ka community today, and they originate from classical [more…]

Choosing the Perfect Rhythm for Your Drum Part

Playing a percussion instrument is all about rhythm. So if you play the drums, when you get together with other musicians, you need to be able to choose the correct rhythm for each song. If you end up [more…]

Five Music Theorists You Should Know About

The evolution of music theory and notation is almost more amazing than the evolution of human writing. When you really think about it, modern music notation is like Esperanto that lots of people can actually [more…]

Getting Acquainted with Producers and Directors

There's no business like show business. But show business, like any business, depends on people. And two of the most important types of people that you'll meet in the film and television business are [more…]

Becoming an Art Connoisseur

There have been many gifted and sharp-eyed curators (keepers and protectors) in the 129-year history of New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art — hundreds of them, expert in fields as diverse as ancient [more…]

Keeping the Tempo of Music

Tempo means, quite basically, "time," and when you hear people talk about the tempo of a musical piece, they are referring to the speed at which the music progresses. The point of tempo isn't necessarily [more…]

Picking Watercolor Paper: Weight and Texture

There are many characteristics of watercolor paper to consider when you're shopping for paper for your watercolor painting. Two important characteristics are [more…]

Ten Famous Guitar Pioneers

Regardless of style, certain guitarists have made their mark on the world of guitar so that any guitarist who comes along after them has a hard time escaping their legacy. You'll find here, in chronological [more…]

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