Baroque Music Characteristics

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Baroque Period (1600-1750) Baroque Music Characteristics 2 Rhythm •Most baroque music has an easily recognizable strong, steady pulse, and continuity of rhythm. •Patterns of rhythmic sequences permeate much of Baroque music. •Rapid changes in harmony often makes the pieces feel more rhythmic. •Dance rhythms were frequently used in multi-movement form pieces. •Dotted rhythms were widely used. Harmony •Figured Bass—a system of numbers placed under the music—was developed to indicate clearly the harmonies that should be played with each note indicated in the bass line. The figured bass was typically realized—performed—by the harpsichord. •The use of the basso continuo, also known as thoroughbass, is a bass line running continuously throughout a piece. The basso continuo is usually played by a bass string and/or low woodwind instrument plus the harpsichord and/or organ. Development of well-tempered tuning and the major-minor tonal system, together with an increased use of chromaticism, the use of all the half steps. There is a distinct shift from the modal system of...

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