Odd Meter (Music Theory Lesson)



Odd Meter (Music Theory Lesson)

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An odd meter is a meter which contains both simple and compound beats.

The first odd meter that we will discuss is 5/8 time. It contains one simple beat and one compound.




The order of the beats does not matter. If the compound beat comes first, it is still 5/8 time.




Next, we will discuss odd meters with three total beats.




7/8 time contains two simple beats and one compound beat.




Again, the order of the beats does not matter.




The compound beat can even be positioned between two simple beats.




8/8 time contains two compound beats and one simple beat.




Sometimes, people confuse 8/8 with 4/4, since both have 8 eighth notes.




Notice that 4/4 groups the measure into four beats of two eighth notes (simple quadruple), while 8/8 groups it into three odd beats.




Our last odd meter has a total of four beats.




10/8 time has two compound beats and two simple beats.




11/8 time has three compound beats and one simple beat.








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