What are Time signatures? Frequently Asked Questions

The time signature (or meter/meter signature) is represented in fractions (i.e. 6/8) and tells how many beats are in a single bar (the upper number), and the duration of the beat, that is – note value (the lower number). For example, a common time signature is 4/4, which means there will be 4 quarter note beats in a bar (a section) and is counted: one-two-three-four, one-two-three-four... On the other hand, 3/4 will have 3 quarter note beats in a bar (traditional waltz, counted as one-two-three, one-two-three, one-two-three...). Before mentioned time meters (3/4 and 4/4) are simple time signatures and very common, while 9/8 and 12/8 are compound time signatures for they are not so easy to play without proper practice.