Multilingual Music Glossary
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We are currently providing explanations for 2459 terms from 12 languages, including English, Italian, French, German, Spanish, Dutch, Swedish, Finnish, Latin…
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Some random terms
- choro Literally, “cry”, or “lament”. Brazilian popular music instrumental style, born in 19th-century Rio de Janeiro. In spite of the name, the style has often a fast and happy rhythm, characterized by the improvisations of the musician.
- riff In pop and jazz compositions, a short ostinato, two to four bars long. A prominent feature of jazz music.
- fauxbourdon A technique of musical harmonization used in the late Middle Ages and early Renaissance. It consists of the cantus firmus and two other parts a sixth and a perfect fourth below.
- dolce Sweet, soft, with tender emotion.
- swing A style of jazz playing whose flexible, improvised rhythms resist notation.
- retrograde Backward statement of a melody.
- ternary form A three-part musical structure (ABA) based on statement (A), contrast (B) and repetition (A).
- lentissimo Very slow.
- chromatic Any music or chord that contains notes not belonging to the diatonic scale.
- moderato A moderate tempo, faster than andante but slower than allegretto, usually around 100–120 BPM.
- reel Moderately quick dance in duple meter danced throughout the British Isles; the most popular Irish traditional dance type.
- klein Literally, “little”. In reference to intervals, “minor“.
- program music Music intended to evoke extra-musical ideas, images in the mind of the listener by musically representing a scene, image or mood. By contrast, absolute music stands for itself and is intended to be appreciated without any particular reference to the outside world.
- blues African-American music genre, characterized by simple repetitive structures and by the use of the blues chord progressions and the blue notes.
- dodecaphony Ensuring that all 12 notes of the chromatic scale are sounded as often as one another in a piece of music while preventing the emphasis of any.