I'm trying to make my way through the classical harmony, and I'm making good progress, but since my last composition lesson there's been something which is not entirely clear to me.
So my teacher is a good creative advisor, but when it comes to actually teaching theory... he can do better. He told me that when making these harmony exercises with a given bassline, you have to determine what the function - tonic, subdominant, dominant - of the chord on that note should be. The way I understood it, is that you only want a tonic in root position at the beginning and the end (an exercise is usually 8 bars long) and inbetween should be a succession of subdominant and dominant functioning chords. You want to group chords within the same function as much as possible, so if I'd analyze a bassline that way, I would get something like this:
Now what isn't entirely clear to me is the way that the function of chords change when you invert them.
So for example, I has the function of a tonic, but I-6/4 has the function of a dominant, as in the cadential 6/4 chord. VI and VI-6 can have the function of a tonic, but VI-6/4 is more like a subdominant chord. So obviously chords that have the root of I, IV or V as bass take over that function, but what exactly gives a chord a T/SD/D function/feel?
I think I got most of this covered, but I'm just making sure if I'm understanding this correctly :)
Edit: This is the way I have currently harmonized this bassline:
Just saying that I've only had chord degrees I to VI and the dominant-seventh chord yet, so that's all I can use now. :)