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Country Vocals Lessons: Nashville Number System - “Amazing Grace”

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now let's write a chart for
Amazing Grace.
Amazing Grace, if we listen,
we can hear the time signature is
a little different for Amazing Grace.
What's different between one two
three four, one two three four?
This is Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain.
Two three four, one two three four,
one two three four.
That's in 4/4, that's the time
signature we figured out for
Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain.
But here's Amazing Grace.
You can't count in four for that.
What does that pulse feel like?
One, two, three, two, two, three.
One, two, three, two, three.
One, two, three, two, two, three.
One, two, three.
One, two, three.
So this pulse, this meter feels different.
The emphasis is on the first beat and
then there are two beats after it and
then it emphasizes the next beat.
So it's in patterns of three.
So, in Amazing Grace, the time
signature is three beats to a measure.
One two three, one two three,
one two three, so
we write the time signature
with a three in the top.
We write this in the upper
left hand corner of the chart.
The three on the top tells us there
are three beats to a measure, and
again a whole measure,
we are using a quarter note.
We're gonna define our time signature
as when you hear a quarter note,
when you feel the beat we're gonna be
saying that that's a quarter note.
So, one, two, three.
So, one measure is three beats, and
if we use quarter notes,
we're gonna say that that means one beat.
So that's what we mean when we use
the three four time signature.
We're gonna write that on our chart so
our musicians know we're
in the 3 4 time signature.
That means every number on our chart
will represent one measure that's
three beats long.
One two three, one two three.
Okay we're gonna work in the key of
C again, since it's so familiar.
And we're gonna move a little more quickly
this time than we did on Blue Eyes.
So we know that C,
the C triad is our one chord.
And here we go,
we're starting on the one chord.
Okay, so we started on a one chord.
We heard two measures of three,
two, three, both on the one chord.
That's two measures of one.
Then we went to the F chord, which is one,
two, three, four, the four chord,
one measure of F, one measure of the four,
and then back to the one chord.
Here's that four bar phrase again.
One two three, two two three, four one.
Put that little dot for
the end of that four-bar phrase.
And here's the second four-bar phrase.
So that's two bars of one.
That's what chord?
One, two, three, four, five.
That's the G, that's the five chord.
So the next four bar phrase is two
bars of one, two bars of five.
Well, that's identical
to the first phrase of the song.
Two bars of one, one bar of four,
and back to the one.
Was blind.
What's that?
That's an A minor triad.
What chord is that in the number system?
One, two, three, four, five, six,
A minor is the sixth chord.
One bar of six minor, one bar of five.
two bars of one.
So here's the whole song.
One, one.
One, one,
four, one.
One bar of six minor, one bar of five,
and back to the one for two bars.
You just charted Amazing Grace.