Simple Rhythms

The basic unit of beat is the crotchet (quarter note).  Here are 4 bars of crotchets played at 120 Beats per minute.  120 BPM is two beats per second.


If we double this, we get quavers (eighth notes).  Here are two bars of quavers followed by two bars of crotchets.

Doubling the speed of quavers produces semiquavers (sixteenth notes).  Here is one bar of semiquavers followed by one bar of quavers and one bar of crotchets, so you can compare all of them together.



Get to know these rhythms by playing them on an instrument.
Get used to changing between the 3.  Mix them up and try writing them down.
The best way of learning rhythms is by PLAYING THEM

Here is an example of something you might write :

Once you have mastered these three basic rhythms, try the dotted quaver/semiquaver  rhythm.  A dot after a note increases its value by half its original value.  A dotted quaver, therefore is worth three quarters of a beat (half plus a quarter).  Again, it is best to feel the effect of a dotted quaver by playing it.  Here is a bar of dotted quaver/semiquavers followed by a bar of crotchets.

Now add this to your rhythms to write down and play on your instrument.

If you have practised your rhythms thoroughly and you think you know them well, try the test