A beam is a connecting line that joins 2 or more notes that are subdivisions of a beat in a measure.
Beaming decisions are based on the metric divisions within a measure. In general, the notes are beamed so that the note groups match the intended rhythmic beat as specified in the current meter.
Certain phrasing considerations, hemiolas, old vocal notation, and emphasizing different beats are all reasons to override the default beaming patterns.
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