Early Guitars and Vihuela

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I have a question about Rhythm in John Playfords "Dancing Master."

He seems to use whole notes with black heads in place of half notes, and double whole notes for whole notes. I worked out the rhythm (more or less) for "a health to betty" following this assumption. can anyone give me some insight?A_Health_To_Betty.pdf


or is there something else going on that I should be aware of?

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I think you are right - they have the same duration of the equvalent white notes.  In this instance I suspect that the font of type available to the printer didn't have any white notes in it - as far as I could judge the music is printed from moveable type.  Sometimes black notes like this are used to indicate sincopation but that doesn't seem to be the case here.  Hope that is helpful

Your transcription and harmonies seem good.

Interesting to try to read the original. I felt seasick and headachy :-)

Its a pretty melody and I'd be interested to hear it played . I guess there are words somewhere.


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