Making Beats

Image Metric levels.svg from the Wikimedia Commons


  • Convey knowledge and understanding of basic rhythm patterns.


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Rhythm Terms

Rhythm – A strong, regular, repeated pattern of sound.
Beat – The beat or PULSE in a piece of music is the regular rhythmic pattern. Like the beating of your heart; heartbeat.
Tempo – The SPEED at which a piece of music is to be played.
Accent – The STRESS given to a musical note.
Duration – The period of TIME during which a musical note is HELD OUT.
Meter – A specific rhythm determined by the NUMBER of beats AND the TIME VALUE assigned to each note.
Duple – When the meter of a piece of music consists of TWO BEATS per measure/bar.
Triple – When the meter of a piece of music consists of THREE BEATS per measure/bar.
Quadruple – When the meter of a piece of music consists of FOUR BEATS per measure/bar.
Syncopation – The musical rhythms in a piece of music that accents a normally WEAK BEAT (off-beat/up-beat).
Cross Rhythm – A rhythm used simultaneously with another rhythm or rhythms. The use of two or more rhythms simultaneously.
Accelerando – A gradual increase of tempo in a section of music.
Ritardando – A gradual decrease of tempo in a section of music.
Rubato – A flexible tempo in a section of music.


Create a blog post with embedded media from SoundCloud and Flickr of your composition

4/4 Time Signature with F and C Notes

Characteristic rock drum pattern image from Wikimedia Commons


  • Day 1
    • Create a blog post titled, Making Beats
    • Create headings
      • Summary
      • Rhythm Terms
      • Copyright Criminals Notes
      • My Beat
      • What I Learned
    • Copy and paste the terms under the Rhythm Terms heading
    • Play with the terms at
    • Listen to Superstition by Stevie Wonder
      • Listen for the rhythm hook at the beginning of the song
      • Analyze and explore the rhythmic pattern at
    • Play with
      • Explore other great drum patterns
    • Examine Led Zeppelin’s Heartbreaker (MIDI)
    • Create the heading Copyright Criminals Notes
    • Start Copyright Criminals
  • Day 2
    • Finish Copyright Criminals
    • Explore free MIDI files
    • Pick a MIDI  beat and/or music notation editors
    • Compose a simple drum pattern for 8 measures
      • You may use whatever time signature you want
      • Make sure there is a nice driving, forward movement
      • Does the listener want to tap their foot?
      • Does it make the listener want to dance?
  • Day 3
    • Finish composition
    • Export as an WAV or MP3 file
    • Upload to
    • Take a screenshot of the beat structure / music notation
    • Upload the beat structure / notation screenshot to Flickr
    • Under the My Beat heading
      • Embed your SoundCloud beat into the blog post
      • Embed the notation screenshot into the blog post
      • Place a link to your creation
    • Write what you learned under the What I Learned heading
      • Explain in your blog post how you composed your beat using rhythm terms
        • Remember you are writing for an audience that was not in the class, so explain what the project was and what you did for it
    •  Write the summary under the Summary heading


  • Beat Generator
  • Beat and Notation Editors
  • GarageBand
  • SoundCloud
  • Flickr


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