A gigue, or jig, is a type of dance that usually uses a compound meter. This piece, Gigue en Cinq, as implied in the title, uses an irregular compound meter, 5/8, resulting in an underlying beat that sounds uneven. Sometimes an irregular time signature like 5/8 or 5/4 is used for convenience, and the music is perceived as a combination of alternating measures of 3 and 2. It’s easier to read and write this kind of song in a compound meter than to change time signatures every measure. That is the case for this song, however, the groupings alternate every measure-one measure of 3+2, followed by a measure of 2+3, etc.-which skews the beat even more!
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