Quiz Questions

Chapter Four

1. Pitch is most closely related to

a. amplitude
b. duration
c. frequency
d. timbre

2. We can apply letter names (A, B, C, etc.) to notes in Western music if they have

a. determinate pitch
b. indeterminate pitch
c. frequency
d. timbre

3. An ascending and/or descending series of notes of different pitch is

a. a chord
b. a scale
c. an octave
d. a tonic

4. When two pitches sound the same, but one is higher than the other, we say they are

a. an octave apart
b. determinate pitches
c. conjunct melodies

5. Playing all 12 pitches within an octave on the piano from low to high yields what is known as the _______ scale.

a. major
b. pentatonic
c. chromatic
d. minor

6. The pentatonic scale contains ________ pitches per octave.

a. five
b. seven
c. twelve

7. The main difference between a major scale and a minor scale is

a. the major scale has twelve pitches per octave while the minor scale has only nine
b. the interval between the second and third scale degrees is smaller in the minor scale
c. the major scale has more octaves than the minor scale
d. the different types of rhythms that accompany them

8. A well-known scale influenced by African scales is the ________ scale.

a. minor
b. pentatonic
c. blues

9. Moving from one key to another is called

a. modulation
b. ornamentation
c. articulation
d. harmonization

10. The number of distinct, recognized pitches within an octave is __________ in Indian and Middle Eastern pitch systems than in Western music.

a. smaller
b. larger

11. When we describe notes as staccato or legato we are talking about

a. harmonization
b. articulation
c. modulation
d. ornamentation

12. Ornamentation refers to

a. playing shorter, clipped notes
b. playing longer, sustained notes
c. moving from one key to another
d. decorating the the main pitches of a melody

13. A mode may be defined by

a. a specific sequence of ascending and descending pitches
b. rules for how to move from one pitch to another within the mode
c. associations with certain emotions, times of day, or seasons
d. all of the above

14. When two or more different pitches are sound simultaneously this yields a

a. melody
b. chord
c. chord progression

15. When each note of a melody becomes the basis of its own chord, this is called

a. ornamentation
b. modulation
c. harmonization
d. arpeggio
16. The distance in pitch from the lowest to the highest note refers to melodic

a. range
b. contour
c. direction
d. all of the above

17. The overall “shape” of a melody defines its melodic

a. range
b. contour
c. direction
d. all of the above

18. In Western music the first scale degree is called the

a. arpeggio
b. interval
c. tonic

19. The distance between any two notes is called an

a. arpeggio
b. interval
c. octave

20. A chord that is performed one note after the other rather than with all the notes sounded simultaneously is

a. a microtone
b. a slendro
c. a pelog
d. an arpeggio

21. Since the slendro scale of Indonesian gamelan music has five pitches per octave, we know that

a. it is one type of pentatonic scale
b. it is based on and identical to the Western pentatonic scale described in the chapter
c. it must be a variant of the blues scale with one pitch missing
d. it can only be used to play pitches of very low frequency

22. If you were to sing the first three notes of the melody of “Mary Had a Little Lamb” (E-D-C) for an ’Are’Are musician and ask him about it, he would probably say that

a. the melodic direction was descending
b. the melodic direction was ascending


1. “Melodic range” is best described as

a. where in the world a melody comes from
b. the distance in pitch from the lowest note to the highest note
c. the overall ‘shape’ of a melody
d. the prevalence of large leaps

Answer: b

2. Which of the following is NOT true of “Mary Had A Little Lamb”?

a. narrow melodic range
b. conjunct melodic character
c. large leaps in the melody from one note to the next
d. children’s song

Answer: c

3. Listen to disk 1, track 25. This Eagle Dance song of the Northern Arapaho

a. is built from phrases with a characteristic ascending melodic contour
b. has a much narrower melodic range than “Mary Had A Little Lamb”
c. is built from phrases with a characteristic descending melodic contour
d. has only three notes

Answer: c

4. Listen to disk 1, track 26, “Zeina.”

The accordion performing on this track has been adapted to accommodate this tradition. These accommodations were designed to allow this instrument to play

a. microtonal intervals
b. longer melodies
c. blues scales
d. slendro and pelog scales

Answer: a

5. The lead instrumental part in this example contains multiple instances of

a. cascading arpeggios
b. staccato and legato articulation
c. large leaps in the melody of more than an octave
d. key changes

Answer: b

6. The chordal accompaniment of disk 1, track 27, “Wave” is played by the

a. saxophone
b. electric guitar
c. drums
d. none of the above

Answer: b

7. “High Water Everywhere” by Charlie Patton (disk 1, track 17) is a good example of a

a. song with no melody
b. song with no chords
c. song in which the melody is accompanied by chords
d. Native American dance song

Answer: c

8. This example of Qur’anic chant (disk 1, track 4) features

a. a major scale
b. an arpeggiated melody
c. a conjunct melody
d. a very wide melodic range

Answer: c


1. Name and describe the three distinctive features of a melody. How can you utilize some of these tools to compare and contrast “Mary Had a Little Lamb” with the Native American “Eagle Dance” song of disk 1, track 25?

2. Explain the differences between major scales, minor scales, pentatonic scales and blues scales. Name some other scales in addition to these in non-Western music and explain why they might sound different.

3. Discuss the various compositional elements of Antonio Carlos Jobim’s bossa nova composition, “Wave” (disk 1, track 27). How do the different parts interact with each other?