from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A tremulous effect produced by rapid repetition of a single tone.
  • n. A similar effect produced by rapid alternation of two tones.
  • n. A device on an organ for producing a tremulous effect.
  • n. A vibrato in singing, often excessive or poorly controlled.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A rapid repetition of the same note, or an alternation between two or more notes. It can also be intended to mean a rapid and repetitive variation in pitch for the duration of a note. It is notated by a strong diagonal bar across the note stem, or a detached bar for a set of notes (or stemless notes).

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The rapid reiteration of tones without any apparent cessation, so as to produce a tremulous effect.
  • n. A certain contrivance in an organ, which causes the notes to sound with rapid pulses or beats, producing a tremulous effect; -- called also tremolant, and tremulant.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. In music:
  • n. A tremulous or fluttering effect in vocal music, intended to give a sentimental or passionate quality to the tone, but often carried to a pedantic and offensive extreme.
  • n. A similar effect in instrumental music, produced by a rapid reiteration of a tone or chord.
  • n. A similar effect in organ music, produced in the pipe-organ by means of a delicately balanced bellows attached to one of the wind-trunks, and in the reed-organ by a revolving fan.
  • n. The mechanical device in an organ by which a tremolo is produced; a tremulant. The use of such a mechanism is usually controlled by a stop-knob. Also tremolant, tremulant.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. (music) a tremulous effect produced by rapid repetition of a single tone or rapid alternation of two tones
  • n. vocal vibrato especially an excessive or poorly controlled one


from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

Italian, from Latin tremulus, tremulous; see tremulous.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Borrowed from Italian tremolo, first-person present indicative of tremolare ("to shake"). Origin: 1715-25.


  • I also wanted to learn a specific technique, called tremolo, more about which later.

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  • The tremolo is a sure sign that the vocal chords have been stretched beyond their natural limits, and there is only one thing can cure this.

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  • Our programmes were of the highest order, the voices pure and full without this abominable tremolo which is unknown to a person who knows how to sing correctly and naturally.

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  • "This vibration in the voice should not be confounded with a tremolo, which is, of course, very undesirable.

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  • I turned off the tremolo, giving it a harder, take-charge sound.

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  • Another one of her highly expressive innovations was this sort of melismatic ornamentation, usually just on a single word or syllable, with a strong, almost Tarzan-like tremolo.

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  • While Ms. Maggart's singing itself is attractive enough — she has a warbly tremolo that I find increasingly endearing — it's the show itself that's the point.

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  • "_How far do you think it is_?" very weakly, with a tremolo which hinted of repressed tears.

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  • A moment later they began to play the ethereal string tremolo that introduces "The Blue Danube," and as that first familiar phrase rose on the French horn, people rose to their feet in stricken silence.

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