• Register
  • Help
Results 1 to 4 of 4

Topic: Question on music terms: and you thought my other questions were stupid :)

  1. #1

    Question on music terms: and you thought my other questions were stupid :)

    All right.. I\'m going to risk sounding like a fool here, but I\'ve tried digging up info on this in online musical glossaries, and the explanations are very sparse.

    Could anyone tell me what these articulation styles mean? Portato, martele, marcato, spiccato, staccato, sautille. Some of these sound similar to each other or other articulations, so I can\'t tell the difference. For example, specifically with strings, portato sounds like a shorter grand detache. And spicatto and marcato sound almost the same (but not quite). And sautille sounds sort of like marcato as well. In fact, I just loaded up the GOS Lite 2nd violins, and staccato, spiccato, marcato, and martele all sound pretty much the same to me, except the warmth is different. Spiccato sounds the most warm, then martele, then staccato, then marcato.

    So if anybody could shed light on this, I\'d appreciate it. [img]images/icons/smile.gif[/img] And no, I wasn\'t sleeping during music class. I simply didn\'t take music class. [img]images/icons/grin.gif[/img]

  2. #2

    Re: Question on music terms: and you thought my other questions were stupid :)

    I’m not the complete expert on this and different libraries tend to sound different for various articulations also but I’ll share what little I know. Also, for the Garritan library, there are detailed explanations of each of these so check it out.

    Of course all the libraries have long and staccato notes. Basically long and short. Long notes can also include crescendos, Tremolo or trills, sordino (that is muted and warm sounding if done right) Sul ponticello (played near the bridge for an eerie shrill sound and of course non vibrato. (smooth no expression)

    Detache is the technique of changing bow directions for each note. (the opposite being legato where the bow continues in the same direction through several notes, very hard to do properly with samples) I believe Grande Detache is using the entire length of the bow. Actually most detache samples probably do use the whole bow stroke.

    Staccato technically means separated with no connection between the notes. It’s pretty obvious to most people who use samples. Long and staccato have been the main choices available till now.

    Martele if I’m correct means “hammered” and I think the player strikes the note and then holds it on the string. String players can probably be more help here. I’m sure Kirk Hunter will be here before long with the official word being a string player.

    Marcato is an on the string accent. Imagine sitting the bow on the string real still, and then yanking it accross real quick to create an accented note. Kind a quick accelleration without any momentum behind it. (0-60 and back in .25 sec perhaps)

    Spiccato involves bouncing the bow on the string for very light and discrete notes.

    Sautille Heavy duty bouncing apparently. It is spiccato played so fast that the bow springs off the strings on its own.

    Portato for strings. Playing a series of notes without lifting the bow and separating them.

    Sometimes for composing, you just simply audition all the possibilities until you get the sound you want. In general for me, I go by length from long to short using these articulations to start with in order from long to short.

    Long sustains
    Grand Detache
    Tasto (playing near the fingerboard)

    I look forward to other answers on this here.
    Could turn into a long thread.

  3. #3

    Re: Question on music terms: and you thought my other questions were stupid :)


    Thanks a million, this was very helpful. True, I suppose ultimately it doesn\'t matter too much how the articulation is performed, but rather how it sounds. I was just curious what these all meant.

  4. #4

    Re: Question on music terms: and you thought my other questions were stupid :)

    If you have the full version of GOS there is detailed desriptions in the documentation (I don\'t know if this comes with the lite version?)
    But you can also find lots of info at the VSL site
    Try here to start..


    [edit]Sorry the link doesn\'t seem to take you directly, So get to the site go to the instruments section, then to strings then to right hand techniques, there\'s descriptions of the technique\'s and MP3 examples.

    Hope this helps


Go Back to forum

Tags for this Thread


Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts