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Slurs and Ties

Now that you understand part writing in the Scot language, we can start discussing more elaborate features. Immediately following the pitch specification of each note, one may indicate a slur or a tie into the next note (assuming there is one), but not both simultaneously. The slur is typed as a single underscore (`_') and a tie as a double underscore (`__'). Despite the surface similarity, there is a substantial difference in the effect of these modifiers.

For purposes of Scot, tied notes are notes which, although comprised of several graphic symbols, represent only a single musical event. (Tied notes are necessary in standard music notation for several reasons, the most common being notes which span a measure line and notes with durations not specifiable with a single symbol, such as quarter note tied to a sixteenth.) Notes which are tied together are summed by duration and output by Scot as a single event. This means you cannot, for example, change the parameters of a note in the middle of a tie (see below). Two or more notes may be tied together, as in the following example, which plays an f# for eleven beats:

     !ti "4/4"
     1 f#__ / 1 f#__ / 2. f# 4r / 

By contrast, slurred notes are treated as distinct notes at the Csound level, and may be of arbitrary pitch. The presence of a slur is reflected in parameter p4, but the slur has no other meaning beyond the interpretation of p4 by your instrument. Since instrument design is beyond the scope of this manual, it will suffice for now to explain that the Scot program gives sets p4 to one of four values depending on the existence of a slur before and after the note in question. This means Scot pays attention not only to the slur attached to a given note, but whether the preceding note specified a slur. The four possibilities are as follows, where the p4 values are taken to apply to the note `d':

     4c  d         (no slur)            p4 = 0
     4c  d_        (slur after only)    p4 = 1
     4c_ d         (slur before only)   p4 = 2
     4c_ d_        (before & after)     p4 = 3

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