Mandolin Self Instructor, online tutorial - Page 42

A simplified self learning system for the Mandolin with tuning instruction, song folio, chord diagrams, sheet music and PDF for printing. By ZARH MYRON BICKFORD

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42                              Starting and Stopping the Tremolo (continued)
Thus, in the Example below, the combined value of the first two notes being- four beats, the tremo-
lo is ended exactly on or with the first beat of the second measure. This final up stroke must not
be separated in the least from those preceding it, nor must it be accented in the least, even though
it appears to be on the first beat of a measure. This first beat, usually accented, has now entire-
ly lost its aggressive character by being tied to a previous note, and merely represents the weak
and unimportant end of a long- note. While this final up stroke, so far as the moment of making-
it is concerned, is decisive, yet it must be so light and unaccented as to scarcely be heard. In the
fifth measure the up stroke ending the tremolo ends in the same manner, exactly on the second beat,
the same being true in the following measures. The tone during the five beats of the last two half
notes must gradually die away so that it is scarcely perceptible at the final stroke. It is most
essential that these final up strokes always be very light-never accented in the least. These princi-
ples are to be applied in all similar places.The dot and tie are explained on the following page.
The grace note just before the last up stroke represents the last down stroke of the tremolo. This
is illustrated iu detail iu The Bickford Tenor Banjo Method (Carl Fischer).
When to Tremolo
It is difficult to give any definite rules as to the tremolo, except the general rule that all notes
should be tremoloed which are too long to be effectively played with single strokes. It may be
said that whole and half notes are always played with the tremolo, while those of shorter dura -
tion frequently require it, but more often do not. This seeming discrepancy is owing to the fact
that the tempo or movement of a piece varies, according to its character, so that a quarter note,
under certain conditions, is held as long as a half note under other conditions.
The application of this rule requires another, equally important-that single strokes must al-
ways be used when the notes are too short to admit of an effective use of the tremolo. The
taste and judgment of the performer is thus called upon to decide when to use the tremolo
and when not to use it. Suggestions from time to time, however, will keep the student
from forming pernicious habits in this regard. While the slur frequently calls for the tre-
molo, it does not always do so, and does not indicate the tremolo.
Prolonging Notes or Rests
The regular value of notes may be increased by the use of a dot and by means of the tie.
The dot adds one half to the value of the note, thus in reality being an abbreviation of the
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