The quality or colour of sound that makes one voice or instrument different from another.
A musical instrument such as a piano, organ or synthesiser.
A drum of West African origin.
How long or short notes are.
The beat / heartbeat of the music.
Musical patterns made up of notes of different durations / lengths.
Can be played on a pitched or unpitched instrument.
A musical pattern that repeats (can be pitched or unpitched).
How high or low a musical sound is.
Another word for tune, created by playing notes one after another.
The five lines that music is written down on.
A symbol (#) which raises a note by a half step (or semitone) when put in front of it.
A symbol (b) which lowers a note by a half step (or semitone) when put in front of it.
How loudly or quietly to play a piece of music.
Italian word for “loud” (shortened to f).
Italian word for “quiet” (shortened to p).
The speed of a piece of music.
Italian word for “slowly”.
Italian word for “fast”.
The way a piece of music is built by combining different sections
(eg. intro-verse-chorus in a pop song).
Call and Response
A question and answer phrase.
e.g. “Have you got a Djembe? Yes I have”.
Thick or thin. How many layers of music there are.
Thick and Thin Textures
Music can be described as having a thin texture (only one or two musical layers) or a thick texture (many musical layers).
The tonality of a piece of music is often either major or minor.
Different pieces of music can be described as having a different mood, often depending on whether the tonality is major or minor.
The use of computers or other hardware/software to create and edit musical sounds.
Sound that has been recorded.
Eg, “I have recorded my vocal part as an audio track”.
Name given to a musical group / ensemble made up four families: strings, woodwind, brass and percussion.
A note that lasts half a beat. They are often found in pairs to make up a whole beat.
A note that lasts for one beat.
A note that lasts for two beats.
A note which lasts for four beats.
A group of notes in a particular order.
e.g. C Major Scale:
C D E F G A B C
A clef used in sheet music for notes higher in pitch than middle C.
A clef used in sheet music for notes lower in pitch than middle C.
Italian word for “getting louder”.
Italian word for “getting quieter”.
Italian word for “getting faster”.
Italian word for “slowing down”.
A piece of music with two contrasting sections, often called A and B.
Music is usually either major or minor. Music in a major key is based around major scales and tends to sound happier.
The three most commonly used chords in any given key.
In C Major these are C, F and G. They are also known as chords I, IV and V (or 1, 4 and 5).
A piece of music created electronically (using software such as Audacity) where different pieces are cut and pasted together.
An arrangement or new version of an existing song or piece of music, created using technology.
The numbers at the beginning of a piece music that tell us how many beats there are in a bar.
Simple Time Signatures
A time signature where the main beats in the bar are usually either crochets or minims and can be divided by two.
A melodic pattern which repeats either up or down in pitch from the original.
Italian word for “medium-loud” (shortened to mf).
Italian word for “medium-quiet” (shortened to mp).
Italian word for “at a walking pace”
(tempo of the music).
Italian word for “medium”
(tempo of the music).
A piece of music with three sections, where the first one repeats at the end (labelled A B A1).
Melody and Accompaniment
A type of texture where there is a clear melody (tune) with distinct accompaniment (the music in the background: the ‘backing’).
Music is usually either major or minor. Music in a minor key is based around minor scales and tends to sound sad.
Minor chords ii and vi, which make a chord sequence more interesting than just using chords I, IV & V.
The process of recoding more than one track on top of each other so they play back simultaneously.
In music technology; the producer controls the dynamic levels (volume) of each track to get an even mix.