The Staff as we know it today originated from musically annotated text,
through the Gregorian Chants around the 12th to 13th centuries.
Until this time,
symbols were used in conjunction with text to represent pitch.
However, when the chants were written,
people began to use lines to represent pitch above the text.
Eventually the system expanded to four lines and used mainly dots
among those lines to represent pitch.
Different numbers of lines were used throughout Europe for different instruments.
When France used five lines in the 1500s
it became widespread and was the norm throughout Europe by the 17th century.
The F Clef looks like a reversed “C” with a trailing tail and two dots:
one above and one below the fourth line indicating the “F” on the staff.
This is the only F-clef used today,
so that the terms “F-clef” and “bass clef” are often regarded as synonymous.
This clef is used for the cello, euphonium, double bass, bass guitar,
and many other instruments.
When used in the Grand Staff
(two staffs: one above the other)
indicates the notes written below middle C and used for the Piano,
the concert harp and other keyboard instruments.
The Bass in many instrumental groups is considered the “floor” of a combo.
In more recent groups in Jazz,
progressive rock and metal,
the base and grown in use,
developing a simple “um-pa” bass line
(as we often hear in polka music)
to powerful and melodic lines.
Such bass players as Les Claypool (Primus),
Jack Bruce (Cream), Jah Wobble (Public Image Ltd),
and Tony Levin (King Crimson)
often stretched the edge of the bass.
One example is Chris Squire in the piece “Close to the Edge”
where it seems the bass guitar is playing duet with the lead.
In celebration of Bass Players and everyone who loves music,
I have created the Bass Clef Amulet.
This piece is 5/8” tall,
including the top bail for hanging on a chain or cord.
Small and simple,
worn as a pendant is a subtle way of indicating your love of music.
It is also intended as a charm for a bracelet or to be hung on an instrument.
As an amulet it may represent the position of the foundation of a group,
the “floor” if you will.
In light of modern times when the Base has grown beyond the simple Tonic and Dominant notes of a chord,
an innovative way to help and support others grow in their own expression.
Like the Bass Player in a band,
One may reach beyond the expected into the realms of innovation.
To get your Amulet, please visit my Bass Clef Amulet Page.