I was studying a tutorial about phrases and cadences.

I faced following image :

Cadences in melody

Here [I] means first chord of F Major scale so it's F Major Chord. So is the next note (A) also considered as [I] or just the note that roman number is written under that?

Take a look at the [V]. Cadences are chord progressions but there's just a single note above [V].

Tutorial Link : http://www.musictheory.net/lessons/55

  • When i checked the answers i understood that i have totally misunderstood the notation. notes on staff are melodies and Roman Number represents the chord that is played in background. But finally it is possible to buid melodic cadences?(Choose a single note from each chord of cadence) – user28132 Jun 26 '16 at 23:56
  • I think you are confused on what a cadence actually is as "Choose a single note from each chord of cadence" makes no sense. – Dom Jun 27 '16 at 0:04
  • I mean that if a cadence is from V to I. Is it possible that i choose a note from V and a note from I in melody. Does it feels the same as the chords? – user28132 Jun 27 '16 at 0:09
  • Or cadences MUST be chords? – user28132 Jun 27 '16 at 0:09
  • 1
    If they are trying to teach common-practice harmony, the consecutive octaves between treble and bass in bars 1 and 2 are such a glaringly incompetent mistake that I'm not inclined to take anything on that site as useful information. – user19146 Jun 27 '16 at 0:31

Let's take a step back and just get a grasp of what is being shown here. The notes on the staff represent the melody and the Roman numerals represent the harmony. The Roman Numeral in the harmony is valid until another Roman Numeral replaces it so yes the harmony is an I which is an F major chord throughout the first measure. The melody and the harmony are greatly related, but the aren't always exactly the same as you can see in the second measure where the melody goes from G to A and A is not part of the ii chord in F major which is G minor. The harmony represents what

You can think of the cadence as some kind of rest in the melody and harmony. In this example the first 4 bars end on a C whole note in the melody thus implying a V and a half cadence to end the phrase. This being a half cadence, the next cadence will most likely go V-I or in other words be a perfect cadence. The number of notes in the melody really isn't that important, but typically when you reach a cadence the melody will use longer note duration than at the start of the phrase.

  • Why didn't composer change the chord in 2nd measure when it reached A? – user28132 Jun 26 '16 at 23:52
  • @MehK it's a non harmonic tone. If we used just chord tones, music would be rather boring. – Dom Jun 26 '16 at 23:55
  • Please checkout my comment under question. – user28132 Jun 26 '16 at 23:56
  • Wow! I wouldn't think that the tutorial may use some seprate concept in middle of this important concept. It can make reader's mind busy about non chord tones instead of thinking about main concept. Anyway... THANK YOU SO MUCH – user28132 Jun 27 '16 at 0:06

When you write the roman numeral denomination of the chords, you are implying that the notes that make up each chord are present, although not explicitly written in the score. So "I" in your example means that the notes F-A-C would be in some fashion played in an improvised manner by a performer or arranged or orchestrated by the composer for the orchestra or choir, etc.

To answer your question literally, I suppose that yes, in some situations it may be possible (depending on what came before) to convey a clear harmonic function with just a two note melody. But it would be a very particular effect sought by the composer. And anyway, as explained, that's not what is intended in the example you provide.

Finally, about the A in the melody yes, in this case it is still under the F chord. This is called a "chord tone" (other than the tonic) as A is part of the F major chord. There could be other possible harmonizations for this note (.e.g a iii, or A minor chord), but the composer has decided that this note is still under the influence of the tonic, or F chord.

  • Please checkout my comment under question. – user28132 Jun 26 '16 at 23:57

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