Shape notes are a music notation designed to facilitate congregational and community singing. The notation, introduced in 1801, became a popular teaching device in American singing schools. Shapes were added to the note heads in written music to help singers find pitches within major and minor scales without the use of more complex information found in key signatures on the staff.
Shape notes of various kinds have been used for over two centuries in a variety of music traditions, mostly sacred but also secular, originating in New England, practiced primarily in the Southern region of the United States for many years, and now experiencing a renaissance in other locations as well.
Read more about Shape Note: Shape Notes, Four-shape Vs. Seven-shape Systems, Effectiveness of Shape Notes, Origin and Early History, Rise of Seven-shape Systems, Currently Active Shape Note Traditions, Nomenclature
Other articles related to "shape note, shape notes, notes, note, shape":
... Shape notes have also been called character notes and patent notes, respectfully, and buckwheat notes and dunce notes, pejoratively ...
... composers quickly spread south, facilitated by the invention of shape notes, a system in which four different note heads corresponded to the four syllables (fa, sol ... While the shape-note system itself never took root in New England, The Easy Instructor and similar collections were instrumental in spreading the music of New England composers to the western and ... experimented with seven-character shape notes as well the system of Jesse B ...
... it, appeared for the first time in Walker's shape note tunebook Southern Harmony in 1847 ... Another shape note tunebook named The Sacred Harp (1844) by Georgia residents Benjamin Franklin White and Elisha J ... Shape note singing communities, with all the members sitting around an open center, each song employing a different director, illustrated this in practice ...
... the minor-key melodies and dark, untamed folk harmonies of the old shape-note repertory seemed quaint and unschooled alongside the Victorian hymns coming into vogue ... changes started by teaching people to sing three- and four-part harmony by note instead of merely following a lined-out hymn in unison ... in the 1850s “The Carmina Sacra was the pioneer round-note book in which the tunes partook more of the German or Puritan character, and were ...
... example, might find himself singing a higher note than the tenors ... dispersed harmony determined the oblong shape of the tune books, with a staff for each part so that singers would always know exactly which notes they ought to be singing ... The Sacred Harp, currently the most widely used four-shape book, included some sixty-five tunes from The Missouri Harmony in its debut edition of 1844 ...
Famous quotes containing the words note and/or shape:
“The finch, the sparrow, and the lark,
The plainsong cuckoo grey,
Whose note full many a man doth mark
And dares not answer nay.”
—William Shakespeare (15641616)
“Irish poets, learn your trade,
Sing whatever is well made,
Scorn the sort now growing up
All out of shape from toe to top,”
—William Butler Yeats (18651939)