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Questions tagged [counterpoint]

Questions relating to the uses, history, types, or analysis of counterpoint.

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Looking for an alternative guitar tuning to fit classical counterpoint exercises

Have a very strange problem, hopefully there is a lurking genius who can solve it cause I'm stumped. I'm studying a stuffy counterpoint composition manual written hundreds of years ago and trying to ...
Des's user avatar
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2 votes
2 answers
96 views

Problem with modal counterpoint

I'm new to counterpoint and this time i tried challenging myself by writing a counterpoint in second species in phrygian E I'm sure there are problems with my counterpoint and wanted to see if anyone ...
user98606's user avatar
4 votes
1 answer
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Is this cross relationship acceptable when compared to a Bach example?

Below is some counterpoint I wrote for a small fugue exposition... ...I have a concern with the cross relationship of F♯ and F♮ at the first beat of measure 3. I looked about in Bach for a similar ...
Michael Curtis's user avatar
2 votes
0 answers
113 views

Counterpoint question: "2 quarter notes at the beginning of the measure cause the melody to lag." Fux Palestrina Counterpoint

A question that has been nagging me for a long time regarding counterpoint is the idea of avoiding "2 quarters at the beginning of the measure as the melody tends to lag." as per Johann Fux. ...
William Egert's user avatar
0 votes
2 answers
128 views

In Organum and Species Counterpoint why is one of the voices always in whole notes?

Edit: It was pointed out to me that counterpoint spawned from the Organum style of music. For more context, here’s information from two sources I just read. “Two styles of Organum existed during this ...
Lecifer's user avatar
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4 votes
1 answer
184 views

In the musical texture “monody”, can the underlying harmony be provided with a single voice?

According to these wiki pages (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Monody https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Homophony), in Monody, ”one solo voice sings a melodic part, usually with considerable ornamentation, ...
Lecifer's user avatar
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2 votes
1 answer
171 views

What is the difference between background, middle ground, and foreground?

Is the idea of structural levels background, middle ground, and foreground only studied in schenkerian analysis? I’m still viewing the background as the simplest layer of a song, which to me would be ...
Lecifer's user avatar
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4 votes
2 answers
140 views

Voice Leading in Göncz’s completion of Contrapunctus 14

My question relates to the attached extract from Zoltan Göncz’s completion of Bach’s Contrapunctus 14 from The Art of Fugue, and specifically the chord marked with the arrow. To my mind, it appears to ...
Chris Benton's user avatar
1 vote
2 answers
145 views

What is the music theory term for the study of the role and rhythm of each voice in multi voice compositions?

I’m looking for the for the study of the role and rhythm of each voice in multi voice composing. For example “lead part/voice/melody or supporting part/voice/melody”. By rhythms what I mean is the ...
Lecifer's user avatar
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3 votes
0 answers
63 views

Why does Schoenberg think of "'semi-contrapuntal treatment' of the accompaniment" as a way of adapting a motive's melody to changes in its harmony?

Schoenberg says that the melody of a motive may be adapted to changes in the harmony "[b]y transposition," "[b]y addition of passing harmonies," or "[b]y 'semi-contrapuntal' ...
Noah J's user avatar
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Exceptions to exposed 8ves/5ths?

I was recently approached by a student, who swore that they had read that exposed (i.e. outer voice hidden) 8ves/5ths were permitted between different inversions of the same chord. He said he came ...
mb_altho's user avatar
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2 votes
1 answer
111 views

Why isn't a P4 allowed on the upbeat in second species counterpoint?

You are supposedly only allowed to enter and leave a dissonance by step in species counterpoint and use consonant skips on the upbeat. however, in any triad an arpeggiation would very frequently ...
user avatar
3 votes
3 answers
113 views

Resolving scale degree 2 in v7 to 3

Are there any circumstances (at least in the common period use) where the scale degree 2 in V7 goes up to 3 as opposed going down to 1? Why does this seem to be disallowed in textbooks, even more than ...
KKZiomek's user avatar
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3 votes
1 answer
161 views

What does this counterpoint rule mean?

I'm using a Musescore extension called Counterpoint Analyzer 0.4, and I am not sure what one of the warning messages refers to. Please see numbers 1 and 2 in the following: Any thoughts as to what ...
286642's user avatar
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2 votes
1 answer
124 views

What does Hindemith's Rule 20 mean? (The Craft of Musical Composition, book 1: Exercises in two-part writing)

Paul Hindemith's Rule 20 in his The craft of musical composition: Book 2: Exercises in two-part writing has two paragraphs: Paragraph One: If the last tone of the model is approached from a fifth ...
Noah J's user avatar
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2 votes
1 answer
136 views

How to identify this Bach Fugue [closed]

I'm trying to identify this fugue subject attributed to J.S. Bach in "Treatise on the Fugue" by Andre Gedalge (page 363 here: https://s9.imslp.org/files/imglnks/usimg/5/59/IMSLP243942-...
lrouleau's user avatar
1 vote
2 answers
137 views

Is George Bizet's l'Arlesienne suite an example of counterpoint?

I've always loved the l'Arlesienne suite, and intrigued by the way the two melodies overlap near the end. Is there a specific musical term for this overlap? Is is counterpoint, or round, or something ...
Simple Gifts's user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
129 views

Six questions about Rule 21 in Hindemith's Craft of Musical Composition, book 2: Exercises in two-part writing [closed]

I am a musician reading Hindemith's Craft of Musical Composition, book 2: Exercises in two-part writing by myself. I have some questions about Rule 21. Three images of Hindemith's rule 21: https://www....
Noah J's user avatar
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5 votes
1 answer
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What is taught in an atonal counterpoint course?

One of the main strengths of studying tonal and/or modal (pre-tonal) counterpoint is understanding dissonance treatment within those idioms. Additionally, one learns how to navigate some of the ...
Richard's user avatar
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2 votes
2 answers
187 views

Bar 48: A3+B4 and B3+A4 - ODE TO JOY Symphony no. 9, opus 125 Extract from a piano transcription by Franz Liszt

In Bar 48 of the fourth movement - "Ode to Joy", Symphony no. 9, opus 125, in this extract from the piano transcription by Franz Liszt, there are three counterpoint melodies, marked in the ...
wonderich's user avatar
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8 votes
2 answers
578 views

Why does species counterpoint not consider harmonic function?

From what I understand, harmonic function came later but since most modern harmony textbooks teach harmony using functional harmony, shouldnt species counterpoint also be adapted to include harmonic ...
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1 vote
0 answers
45 views

How to play the 1/32-notes rhythmically relative to the base voice in Leiki Ueda's "Chronicles of Narnia"? [duplicate]

I am trying to figure out how to play the following 1/32 notes (in green) in Leiki Ueda's rendition of "The Chronicles of Narnia – The Battle". My intuition would be to start them on the ...
euler132's user avatar
3 votes
1 answer
52 views

First Species of Counterpoint rule involving the next to last bar

In Alfred Mann's The Study of Counterpoint, there is a passage that explains a rule basically restricting the interval of the last bar to a minor third if the cantus firmus is in a lower register, or ...
nikki's user avatar
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1 vote
0 answers
91 views

Rules for improvising intermediate notes in basso continuo

When realizing figured bass, passing notes in the bass are analyzed quite thoroughly in literature (e.g. The Art of Accompaniment from a Thorough Bass). However, I cannot find any information or rules ...
Tristan's user avatar
  • 123
4 votes
1 answer
99 views

Is it possible to write a phase-shifted pattern that obeys the rules of classical counterpoint?

Is it possible to write a phase-shifted pattern in the style of Minimalist phased looping on Gibson Echoplex Digital Pro that obeys all the classical counterpoint rules? Each note of the pattern will ...
empty's user avatar
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10 votes
1 answer
287 views

Rule on doubling the second rather than the fourth when using ligatures

I was going through the ligatures in 4 parts exercises from Fux's Gradus. On page 133, Aloys says, "Finally, in the sixth measure of the same example the fourth is doubled, although as a rule one ...
Allen Chou's user avatar
3 votes
1 answer
115 views

Are parallel 5ths still problematic if the texture switches between 2 and 3 voices?

This is a 3-part counterpoint I am working on. It is not a strict counterpoint exercise but I want to try keep within the guidelines as much as possible. In m. 19 the middle voice (in red) stops ...
user avatar
2 votes
0 answers
87 views

what are the options for the penultimate measure in the 3rd species counterpoint

Mr. Fux says: Then, Mr. Fux does: In Gradus ad Parnassum (Mann's translation). Is the last one a mistake? There's nothing written in the book that it's a mistake.
learnerdude3iforgotmypassword's user avatar
4 votes
2 answers
96 views

what was a skip according to fux and what is it in general

I wonder what a skip actually is for Fux. Because, in Gradus he says a reversal is needed after a skip but then he does something like that: To clarify, I've no problem with how it sounds, it sounds ...
learnerdude2-iforgotmypassword's user avatar
4 votes
3 answers
507 views

Voice leading errors in Bach's WTC 1 fugue in C major?

Bach is supposed to be the master of all things music, but in the first fugue of the WTC (BWV 846), there seem to be a lot of counterpoint errors and voice leading errors. In the Urtext edition, there ...
OprenStein's user avatar
  • 1,626
6 votes
2 answers
508 views

Fux Counterpoint

In Fux's study of First Species modal counterpoint, why is it permitted to raise the 7th as he approached the final cadence. I realize that allowing that creates a leading tone which sounds better, ...
Ron Franklin's user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
135 views

Question on the definition of a dissonant passing/neighbor tone?

I am currently trying to teach myself counterpoint following Jacob Gran's videos. When I was analyzing my exercises today, I thought of this question. If the first two notes of a dissonant neighbor(or ...
Sam Cao's user avatar
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9 votes
3 answers
1k views

What is the difference between a double fugue and a fugue with multiple countersubjects?

The double fugue is apparently a type of fugue with two subjects. What I don't understand is what differentiates a second subject from a countersubject, and why a so-called double fugue cannot be ...
OprenStein's user avatar
  • 1,626
0 votes
3 answers
157 views

How to study part-writing as a self-taught musician?

I've recently picked up Schoenberg's "Preliminary Exercises In Counterpoint" after reading most of "Fundamentals of Musical Composition" as he indicates there and in other texts ...
Bruno Machado - vargero's user avatar
5 votes
3 answers
633 views

consonant skips in 2nd species counterpoint

From The Complete Musician by Laitz Consonant skips are motions by a third. Well, I think we have a confusion here because by saying 'consonant' I suppose Laitz implied that both vertically and ...
user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
196 views

Harmonic Voices Alongside Counterpoint

I'm writing a piece for a rather large ensemble: full string section SATB choir plus soloists 2 of oboe, bassoon, and trombone c-g timpani In one of the sections, the chorus sings a fugato while the ...
OprenStein's user avatar
  • 1,626
1 vote
1 answer
121 views

Are octave leaps in counterpoint subject to the same rules as if the leap never happened?

If I had a V - I progression with ^5 in the soprano the counterpoint would be 8tv and 5th which would be fine because you are moving between two perfect intervals in oblique motion. But I am writing a ...
user avatar
0 votes
0 answers
68 views

How to make a chordal analysis when you only have 2 voices?

In my textbook Harmony and Voice Leading 5th edition I am to complete an exercise using 2 voices and wanted to make an analysis first of what chords were implied by the bass and soprano. Can someone ...
user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
107 views

3part counterpoint 4th species fusion resolving note appearing in other parts

This is 16th century 3 part 3rd and 4th species fusion counterpoint. At the second measure, there's C, The first note on the soprano. In the bass, there's sustained D, which will resolve to C. The ...
Hyun Yoo Park's user avatar
4 votes
4 answers
325 views

Are voices that have very big pitch difference always independent and less dissonant?

Voices can be "blended" or be independent. Independent voices are very distinct, the listener can hear each voice separately. On the other hand, "blended" voices are those which ...
user11655900's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
107 views

Why is this augmented 4th bad ? 16th century counterpoint

I'm studying 16th century counterpoint. My book says, when writing a melody for second species, augmented 4th or augmented 5th shouldn't occur between strong beat and a strong beat. But this is not ...
Hyun Yoo Park's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
74 views

Is consecutive 8’s on resolving the 7s in the weak beat against the rules ? 16th century counterpoint 3part 2nd and 4th species fusion

This is my exercise on 3part 2nd and 4th species fusion 16 century counterpoint. Is consecutive 8’s on resolving the 7s in the weak beat against the rules ? (At measure 5,6 between the soprano and ...
Hyun Yoo Park's user avatar
5 votes
3 answers
167 views

Can a Round Modulate?

I've been messing around with simple 2-part rounds recently, and also with modulation. The question occurred to me, can a round modulate? Initially I though not, since it would involve having parts in ...
Robin Andrews's user avatar
2 votes
3 answers
138 views

What intervals does the "consecutive interval" comprehend?

I'm studying 16th century counterpoint. I'm reading 3part counterpoint with 2 species and 3 species mixed chapter. I read that consecutive intervals must be avoided in certain situations. Ok I get ...
Hyun Yoo Park's user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
118 views

Is there something wrong with this counterpoint practice?

I've been studying 16 century counterpoint through a book myself. I just got into 3 voice 3 species and its a little confusing. This is a part of a 16 centrury counterpoint practice I did. I'll like ...
Hyun Yoo Park's user avatar
5 votes
2 answers
211 views

the cadence in 3rd species counterpoint with 3 voices in the Phrygian mode

When the Cantus Firmus is in the 1st or 2nd voice, the bass is suppose to play the 5th note of the mode in the 2nd last bar. In the case of E Phrygian, the 5th degree is B which has however a ...
foxrox's user avatar
  • 107
1 vote
1 answer
196 views

2nd species counterpoint in 3 parts, is it ok?

If someone would be willing to point out errors I'm making with this species, before I continue on to the others, I'd be grateful https://flat.io/score/61d7e420658ae700133b1e72-c?sharingKey=...
Jack999's user avatar
  • 233
4 votes
0 answers
148 views

Did Stravinsky ever work backwards?

I've always been intrigued by this little passage in Stravinsky's "Fireworks" (op. 4). It seems to me to be many things all at once, each masterfully handled. It's a nifty little canon, a ...
nuggethead's user avatar
  • 5,551
3 votes
2 answers
122 views

What are some strategies one could use to put as many suspensions as possible in a chord progression?

I ask this question in the context of strict (florid) tonal counterpoint as taught, for example, by Albrechtsberger and many later writers. Fux in his Gradus ad Parnassum recommends putting many ...
Kim Fierens's user avatar
  • 2,347
3 votes
0 answers
73 views

4 part counterpoint to chordal harmony transition [closed]

In one of my first solo piano pieces(a Rondo)the A theme is stated, ending on a Picardy third to transition to the second, B theme in the parallel major, which starts in a 4 part counterpoint, and ...
Gregory's user avatar
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