Definition and background:
The art of performing or singing the same note over and over very quickly, executed most commonly but not exclusively on bowed string instruments. Tremolo may be measured or unmeasured and has the effect of adding motion to the sound. shaking; i.e., a rapid repetition of the same note, or an alternation between two or more notes (often an octave on the piano). String players perform tremolo with the bow by rapidly moving the bow while the arm is tense. It can also be intended (inaccurately) to refer to vibrato, which is a slight undulation in pitch. It is notated by a strong diagonal bar across the note stem, or a detached bar for a set of notes (or stemless notes).A rapidly-repeated note. If the tremolo is between two notes, then they are played in rapid alternation. The number of slashes through the stem (or number of diagonal bars between two notes) indicates the frequency at which the note is to be repeated (or alternated). As shown here, the note is to be repeated at a demisemiquaver (thirty-second note) rate. In percussion notation, tremolos are used to indicate rolls, diddles, and drags. Typically, a single tremolo line on a sufficiently short note (such as a sixteenth) is played as a drag, and a combination of three stem and tremolo lines indicates a double-stroke roll for a period equivalent to the duration of the note. In other cases, the interpretation of tremolos is highly variable, and should be examined by the director and performers.
A technique performed with either a very rapid down-up movement of the pick or a pami plucking of the fingers
An even, repeated change in volume of a musical tone.
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Wikipedia - Glossary of Musical Terminology
Virginia Tech Multimedia Music Dictionary
ORB -- Medieval Music Glossary