Stem and Beam with Rest

• Jan 3, 2020 - 16:24

Is it possible, (and sensible), to stem and beam a rest? So, could I make the stems/beams in the top bar look like those in the bottom bar? I've read the manual chapter on beams but didn't spot anything.



I can't speak to how sensible it is in this particular context, but to do it, select the rest, apply "beam middle" icon from the Beam Properties palette.

Mostly this is used to extend a beam over a rest in the middle of a group, like four eighths "C D r E" where the "r" is a rest.

In reply to by yonah_ag

It’s clear already indeed. Your proposed change is confusing because it makes it seem the note on the lower strings are eight notes as well, when apparently they are not. On the other hand, making them actually be eighth notes and in the same voice as the others is clearer still.

In reply to by Marc Sabatella

But they are the bass line and are mainly dotted minims which is why they are in the 2nd voice. I would have to tie 6 together to make them fill a bar. Is this a better way to go?

(I will leave out the beam on the rest so that it doesn't make voice 2 look like an eighth note. There are no eighth notes in voice 2).

In reply to by yonah_ag

Well, guitar is special in that there really is no practical difference between a half note and eighth note in this context. That is, you probably aren't going to play the note any differently; you'll pluck it and let it ring either way. So it's not uncommon to notate for simplicity rather for accuracy in this way, since the distinction won't matter in practice. With standard notation, it can still be useful to show the long versus short note to help the reader understand the function and intent, and standard notation makes this easy to represent clearly. but tab is more limited in its ability to convey rhythm clearly, and most tab readers aren't that skilled in reading the rhythmic information that tab is capable of displaying. So it's common in tab to notate for simplicity - everything in one voice - even if the standard notation might make it worth showing multiple voices. In tab, a common convention would just be to notate it as all eighth note in one voice, since it isn't going to sound any different and will be easier to read and play if you don't confuse the issue with multiple voices and differing/overlapping durations.

So, in standard notation, this wouldn't be unclear at all, since we'd see the rest, and the beam would do nothing to help anyhow., In tab, adding the beam just makes it look like it applies to the two lower notes, so anyone reading it is going to see them as eighths because there is no rest for the beam to apply to. You'd need to show the rest in order for anyone to understand the beam isn't applying to those lower notes.

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