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  #1  
Old 2012-03-27, 08:27
Paddy Paddy is offline
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Time Signatures Vs. Tempo

I know this much about music theory *holds hands apart about 4 inches*. One thing I've never gotten my head around is deciding, as a tabber, to use 4/4 time at 120 BPM using eight-notes, or 4/4 time at 60 BPM using 16th notes. Here's what I mean - the following two images show the same notes being played at the same speed (relative to the tempo, obviously):

01 | 02

I just read on Wikipedia that it doesn't matter which you choose outside of practical reasons, such as readability of the notes and the ease of placing them on the stave. Something tells me that's either wrong or I've misunderstood it because it's a little bit "loose" for my liking as far as the rules of music theory go. I mean, going by that I could just tab everything in 1/1 if I wanted to and no one could say shit to me. NO ONE
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Old 2012-03-29, 03:03
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The way I've always understood it is that if you have a riff that lasts for 1.5 bars (6 beats in 4/4) then you have to tab a minimum of three bars for it to make sense in 4/4.

The alternative is to say that the riff is in 6/4, in which case you only need to tab one bar.

That's my simplistic understanding anyway.
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Old 2012-04-06, 11:57
Paddy Paddy is offline
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I suck so bad at this, I'm still none the wiser hahaha.

On UG a tab of mine received a comment about this. Here's the tab (MT version):

http://metaltabs.com/tab/13943/ (it's at 120 BPM here, 4/4 time)

The comment was as follows:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ungrateful Cunt
Nice job with this tab. One suggestion though. I would say the tempo is actually quarter note = 60 and what you were thinking was a quarter note at 120 was actually the eighth.
I kinda know what he means, but at the same time I haven't a fucking clue. I know he means I should half the tempo and then half the duration of every note in the tab so two bars' worth of notes fit into one, but I don't know why or when I'm supposed to use one tempo instead of another.
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Old 2012-04-10, 02:39
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I think you'd look for when the actual drum beats fall to determine the tempo.
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Old 2012-05-28, 04:22
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Dystopia Dystopia is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Paddy
I suck so bad at this, I'm still none the wiser hahaha.

On UG a tab of mine received a comment about this. Here's the tab (MT version):

http://metaltabs.com/tab/13943/ (it's at 120 BPM here, 4/4 time)

The comment was as follows:

I kinda know what he means, but at the same time I haven't a fucking clue. I know he means I should half the tempo and then half the duration of every note in the tab so two bars' worth of notes fit into one, but I don't know why or when I'm supposed to use one tempo instead of another.


He sounds like an asshole.
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Old 2012-05-31, 07:39
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnmansley
The way I've always understood it is that if you have a riff that lasts for 1.5 bars (6 beats in 4/4) then you have to tab a minimum of three bars for it to make sense in 4/4.

The alternative is to say that the riff is in 6/4, in which case you only need to tab one bar.

That's my simplistic understanding anyway.

This is how I understand it as well. Time signature really has more to do with how you want to divvy things up. Either way you cut things up into individual bars, the block of notes as a whole will always resolve to the same time signature. As long as you're dealing with standard rock bands, that block of notes will usually resolve to 4/4, 3/4, or 5/4.

Tempo is a bit more straightforward and is based on the speed the drums are carrying the music. 8th notes at 120 is usually going to make more sense than 16ths at 60 because 120bpm is an extraordinarily common tempo in music (notice, both GP and powertab start with 120bpm as the default tempo). 60bpm is used much less commonly and you'd probably notice it just by listening to the drums. Even then, you could still tab it as 120bpm if you wanted; you'd just have to halve each drum note if you also tabbed the drums.

Sorry I missed this earlier. I'm not a theory expert, anyway (I don't have a SINGLE scale memorized, for example), but I believe I understand tempo and time signatures pretty well.
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Old 2012-05-31, 16:13
Paddy Paddy is offline
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Cheers Chris, I appreciate the input. I'm still none the wiser, but that's more my fault than yours.

This is the song in question:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZtzNcMaeeZY

This is the Guitar Pro tab (includes drums):

http://pmtabs.myartsonline.com/tabs...llow%20Soul.gp5

I tabbed it in 120, and I don't see why I was wrong to do that, but if it were tabbed at 60 and I simply halved the length of all the notes it'd still be correct but I'm not sure which would be more appropriate.

Now that I think about it the time signature probably doesn't even come into it, at least not in this particular instance. See how shit I am at this?
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  #8  
Old 2013-03-16, 04:01
Exodus666 Exodus666 is offline
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Just count along out loud (1, 2, 3, 4). This will be how you 'feel' the beat (and thus BPM), and that's what you should use.

Looking at your tab, I feel 4 beats over two measures, so yeah, I understand why you got that comment.
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