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Bernadette Peters - Broadway's Best
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'How can I remember accidentals?'
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#beginquote# I use this all the time with my students. The order of Flats is BEADGCF. I there are three flats in a key signature then they are ALWAYS Bb, Eb and Ab, for example. Six flats is BEADGC, etc. I make them memorize that order of flats in some fashion (for some of them I suggest they think of a string of beads for the BEAD then Greatest Common Factor for GCF, sounds wierd but high school students seem to remember it pretty easy). For the flat keys go one FORWARD in the order to see what notes are flatted. For example in Bb major there are two flats, Bb and Eb. For Ab Major you have five flats, Bb, Eb, Ab, and Db. For F Major (since F is at the end of the list) you start over at the beginning meaning that in the key of F major there is just one flat note, Bb. C major doesn't really work with the system but as long as you remember that C major has no flats or sharps you will be fine. Sharp keys are a little more complicated. Just reverse the order of flats and you get the order of sharps: FCGDAEB. If you are in G major, go backward two in the order of sharps and you have your last sharp, F#. In B major your last sharp is A sharp meaning that you have F#,C#,G#,D#,and A# in the key signature. Again, there are a few that don't fit so nicely into this system, but it works great for middle or high school band students that have trouble memorizing the keys. --------------------------- Chad Criswell Director of Bands Western Dubuque High School www.musicedmagic.com #endquote#
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