What is sustain?

  • (verb): Lengthen or extend in duration or space.
    Synonyms: prolong, keep up
    See also — Additional definitions below


In music, sustain is a parameter of musical sound over time. As its name implies, it denotes the period of time during which the sound remains before it becomes inaudible, or silent.

Read more about Sustain.

Some articles on sustain:

Sustain (disambiguation)
... Sustain is a parameter of musical sound in time ... Sustain may also refer to Sustain (album), a 2007 ska punk album SUSTAIN (military), a concept in airborne warfare USS Sustain (AM-119), an Auk-class minesweeper Sustain ...
Sustain - Increasing
... There are musical devices used to increase sustain, known as "Sustainers", such as the patented Fernandes Sustainer guitar system and the EBow, which can be used to produce virtually ... There are many factors that affect the level of sustain in guitars ... Larger string diameters have also been shown to increase sustain ...
Richard Skelton - Discography
... Heidika, There Is No Cure Other Songs, Sustain-Release CD Carousell, A Dead Bridges Into Dust, Sustain-Release CD Harlassen, A Way Now, Sustain-Release CD Carousell, Landings, Sustain-Release CD A Broken ...
Sustain Pedal - Other Instruments
... Electronic keyboards often include a sustain pedal, a simple foot-operated switch which controls the electronic or digital synthesis so as to produce a sustain effect ... Vibraphones have sustain pedals that allow the metal bars to ring ... Some tubular bells have a sustain pedal ...
Sustain Pedal - Specifying Pedaling in Musical Compositions
... An alternative (and older) notation is the use of indicating where the sustain pedal should be depressed, and an asterisk showing where it should be lifted (see Moonlight Sonata ... Occasionally there is a general direction at the start of a movement instructing that the sustain pedal be applied continuously throughout ... In General MIDI, the sustain pedal information is controlled by Control Change number 64 (CC 64) ...

More definitions of "sustain":

  • (verb): Undergo (as of injuries and illnesses).
    Synonyms: suffer, have, get
  • (verb): Admit as valid.
    Example: "The court sustained the motion"
  • (verb): Supply with necessities and support.
    Example: "The money will sustain our good cause"
    Synonyms: keep, maintain
  • (verb): Be the physical support of; carry the weight of.
    Synonyms: hold, support, hold up

Famous quotes containing the word sustain:

    In the United States, it is now possible for a person eighteen years of age, female as well as male, to graduate from high school, college, or university without ever having cared for, or even held, a baby; without ever having comforted or assisted another human being who really needed help. . . . No society can long sustain itself unless its members have learned the sensitivities, motivations, and skills involved in assisting and caring for other human beings.
    Urie Bronfenbrenner (b. 1917)

    What would life be without art? Science prolongs life. To consist of what—eating, drinking, and sleeping? What is the good of living longer if it is only a matter of satisfying the requirements that sustain life? All this is nothing without the charm of art.
    Sarah Bernhardt (1845–1923)

    When Gabriel’s trumpet ends all life’s delay,
    Will crash the beams of firmamental woe:
    Not nature will sustain the even crime
    Of death, though death sustains all nature, so.
    Allen Tate (1899–1979)