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Music Theory for Computer Musicians by Michael Hewitt

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Cross Rhythm

You can gain an interesting effect when you play triplets against pairs. Track 17 on the CD gives an example of this. This is three notes in one part being heard in the same time as two notes of another part. This is known as a cross-rhythm, and in classical times this particular cross-rhythm was known as hemiola (see Figure 7.22).

Figure 7.22. Hemiola rhythm.

You get this effect in drum and bass music when the tambourine produces sixteenth triplets and the closed hi-hats produce straight sixteenths. The result is a nice, exciting, dense rhythm that gives the drum track more edge. In East African drumming, ...

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