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What does 8va---- mean?

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(@raistx)
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Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 78
Topic starter  

Hello All,

I have been looking for some new material to learn and have come across the symbol 8va a few times but have no idea what it means. Can you help please.

Thanks,

Marty.


   
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(@wes-inman)
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Joined: 21 years ago
Posts: 5582
 

According to my 9 year old daughter who has been playing piano for 2 and 1/2 years now, if 8va is written above the treble clef it means to play the music one octave higher than written, if 8va below the bass clef it means to play the music one octave lower than written. :D

If you know something better than Rock and Roll, I'd like to hear it - Jerry Lee Lewis


   
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(@raistx)
Trusted Member
Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 78
Topic starter  

Thanks Wes,

Lucky there is TAB as well. I don't know enough about octaves to work that out.

Thank your daughter for me.

Regards,

Marty.


   
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(@danlasley)
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Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 2118
 

According to my 9 year old daughter who has been playing piano for 2 and 1/2 years now, if 8va is written above the treble clef it means to play the music one octave higher than written, if 8va below the bass clef it means to play the music one octave lower than written. :D

I think the bass clef is 8vb for lower, but I could be wrong... either way, it's definitely an octave shift.


   
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(@noteboat)
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Joined: 21 years ago
Posts: 4921
 

Yep, it's called an ottava sign. 8va means one octave higher - 8va basso means one octave lower (I've never seen it abbreviated 8vb, but some publishers might do that)

There's also a double ottava - 15va. Same deal, but two octaves up/down... it's pretty rare, though.

Guitar teacher offering lessons in Plainfield IL


   
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(@raistx)
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Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 78
Topic starter  

Thanks Laz and Noteboat.


   
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(@rahul)
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Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 2736
 

You will often find this sign in guitar music as it is played on a higher pitch on the staff.

Good Luck playing.


   
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(@hyperborea)
Prominent Member
Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 827
 

This is pretty easy to use for a guitar. An octave up is just 12 frets higher. Sometimes solos that are played up beyond the 12th fret are written out as if they were played lower and then marked with the "8va" mark. This is done to avoid having all those ledger lines that make it harder to read the notes.

What's interesting is that the guitar music is already written out transposed an octave up to avoid having most music lying in between the treble and bass clefs. So, the C on the first fret of the "B" string is actually middle C. When you combine the "8va" mark and the standard transposing you end up with the notation happening in the "correct" place.

Pop music is about stealing pocket money from children. - Ian Anderson


   
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(@bigerik13)
New Member
Joined: 15 years ago
Posts: 1
 

I have a further question. I've got 8va on some bass notation, where the tab shows notes played above the 12th fret on the D and G strings - surely they don't mean that I should raise that by an octave? I think it's already raised, so is the notation just there to confuse? :?

Any help willingly received!


   
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(@noteboat)
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Joined: 21 years ago
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Tab doesn't use an ottava - there's no need to, because '24' is just as easy to read as '12'. So the ottava sign applies only to the standard notation shown with the tab.

Guitar teacher offering lessons in Plainfield IL


   
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