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Questions tagged [intervals]

For questions centered around the ideas about and classification of distances between two pitch.

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Maximum interval between Alto & Tenor, & intervals when writing for SATB

What is the maximum interval permitted between the Alto & Tenor when writing for SATB? I have read it should not be more than a 10th, whereas another source said it should not be more than an 8th. ...
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Mikrokosmos, BB 105, Vol. 1: No. 17 Contrary Motion (1) - Can't understand the structure

Can somebody explain how the harmony works in this piece? It seems that the right hand plays on C key and the left hand alternates between G and D. Why when played in opposite direction do the ...
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8answers
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Are doubly augmented and doubly diminished intervals practical?

In music theory when naming intervals, a lowered diminished interval is a doubly diminished interval (dd) and a raised augmented interval is a doubly augmented interval (AA). One example is a C♯ ...
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Are intervals like major 3rd, minor 3rd, and major 2nd all based on the scales, or are they based on how many semitones they have?

Are intervals like major 3rd, minor 3rd, and major 2nd all based on the scales, or are they based on how many semitones they have? I ask this question because if I play the C major scale, and I ...
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2answers
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What does it mean to “outline an interval”?

Here, for example, I see the following rule: Consecutive leaps should outline a triad What does it exactly mean? My assumption was that, if we have a sequence of tones that leaps-wise go in one ...
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General procedure for determining the name of an interval given a major key / diatonic collection [duplicate]

I'm attempting to program a library that lets one make use of concepts from Peter Westergaard's tonal theory. The current problem I'm trying to solve is to determine the specific name of an interval ...
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4answers
145 views

when is a perfect fifth interval a diminished 6th and why? [duplicate]

I did a music theory test where I was asked the interval between F# and Db. I called the interval a perfect fifth but I was wrong. It was a diminished 6th. Can someone please can explain why this ...
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1answer
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Naming Intervals — Tactics, Strategies, Tricks

For naming intervals I have two strategies in my head. STRATEGY #1 First identify the generic interval between the two given notes by counting the notes between them (inclusive of those two given ...
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Term for distinguishing dim/perfect/aug intervals from dim/min/maj/aug ones

There are two types of intervals, distinguished by their possible qualities: Unisons, fourths, fifths, and octaves (and their compound variants) may be of perfect or (multiply) diminished/augmented ...
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5answers
455 views

Is there a term to describe an augmented second as a step or tone instead of an interval?

Typically when describing a scale its very typical to describe the pattern in terms of semitones and tones or half steps and whole steps as follows: A major scale is a diatonic scale. The sequence ...
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2answers
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Perfect 4th is dissonant?

Why is the perfect fourth dissonant in some cases when it does not sound dissonant? When I play it in closed position, it does not sound dissonant at all. When I play it as a compound interval, I ...
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Is the tritone (A4 / d5 / DA3 / Dd6) still banned in Roman Catholic music?

The tritone is one of the most dissonant intervals in music. It is also known as the "Augmented 4th", "Diminished 5th", "Doubly Augmented 3rd" or "Doubly Diminished 6th", and it is composed of three ...
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Are there any chords other than the dim7 and Fr. 6 that have two overlapping tritones?

On my question Why does the French sixth sound more dissonant than the others?, I got this answer from Ben I.: It's because the French 6th chord has an extra tritone. If we take an A♭ ...
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Augmented Second Created from Raised Lower Pitch

I’m working through a Barrons AP Music Theory book and was very confused by one of the diagrams. The diagram begins with a major second created by a G to an A, or a M2 due to it being a whole step. It ...
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1answer
219 views

How accurately can a good musician judge an interval to be out of tune? [closed]

This is for a music/physics crossover experiment. Almost everyone will be familiar with the Doppler Effect, even if they don't know the name. Imagine that a vehicle is blaring its a siren or ...
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what's the name of the interval A (V degree) and D# in a e minor scale?

I guess it's an augemented fourth because it contains a half step more than a perfect fourth; [from a source] but in a minor scale it isn't allowed: an augmented fourth is IV degree.
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I need help to understand chord intervals (not single note intervals)

I understand intervals between notes. Each number of steps between two notes has a particular name. Like this: But some times I see people refering to intervals between chords, not single notes. Like ...
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4answers
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How can a perfect fourth interval be considered either consonant or dissonant?

I've been reading Ralph Denyer's book, The Guitar Handbook, and in the section on intervals he states that the perfect fourth can be either consonant or dissonant but it's not explained as how or why. ...
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6answers
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Why have I never found any music written in the key of C Sharp Major?

Music is written in almost every key that corresponds to every note that is on my piano keyboard. There is clearly a C Sharp (black key right of C) on my piano keyboard but I don't recall ever seeing ...
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1answer
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Is it true that “The augmented fourth (A4) and the diminished fifth (d5) are the only aug and dim intervals that appear in diatonic scales”

According to a source that I found, A4 & d5 are 2 types of tritones, and there are 1 or 2 tritones in a diatonic scale, depending on the definition. I cannot see how A4 and d5 are the only 2 ...
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Confusion about major and minor second intervals

Why is a major second interval different from a minor second interval considering that in the natural scales formulae they are both one whole step?
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What's the point of interval inversion?

The rules for inverting intervals are well documented (for example on Wikipedia), but I'm having a hard time figuring out why this operation is of interest: How does interval inversion help us in ...
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Is there a way of measuring the distance between notes indepedently of tuning? [closed]

I am trying to understand how much of music theory can be done independently of a specific tuning system. In equal temperament, all semitones have the same size, but that is not the case in other ...
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Training interval identification: Unable to identify major and minor seconds

I started practicing interval comparison, but I'm completely unable to consistently identify major and minor second intervals. I am so bad at identifying them, that I started to think I had a ...
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Is there a simple way to transpose a song from one key to another? What is the methodology?

What is a simple way to accomplish transposing a song from one key to another key? In other words if I am looking at a song written in the key of C and can't sing it in that key and I want to ...
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4answers
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Identifying the interval from A♭ to D♯

This is a very theoretical question but it's confusing me a little. So intervals overlap - That's why I can call a major 3rd a diminished 4th, and such. However, from what I understand, a perfect ...
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2answers
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what does the apostrophe mean in this notation?

Found this whilst reading some basic theory on wikipedia, but am trying to figure out what the supposed meaning is. example: b-c' kleine secunde 16:15 source: Wikipedia link with interval table ( ...
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3answers
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Having learnt all the intervals by ear, how does one learn whole melodies? [duplicate]

This might seem like an easy step, but having learned how to recognise all the intervals upto an octave: ascending, descending and harmonically, how does one figure out a melody by ear? I can pick out ...
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4answers
592 views

How do I aurally differentiate the tritone, min 6th and major 7th intervals?

I have made good progress in identifying most ascending intervals up to the octave, but am really struggling with the tritone, min 6th and maj 7th. All three sound dissonant and very similar. Is ...
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4answers
177 views

Tritone or Minor 2nd as the most dissonant interval?

I'm trying to establish which interval is more dissonant, the tritone or the minor 2nd. Both are obviously very dissonant intervals. Math seems to prove that a minor 2nd should sound more consonant ...
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Are octaves, fifths, fourths and thirds considered as “consonant” in all music cultures?

Our western music culture revolves around the rule that certain intervals are very consonant, and others (such as the interval between a B and F) are dissonant. The octave is the most consonant ...
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Why are consecutive P4s okay to use while P1s, P5s, P8s are not?

Consecutive P1s, P5s, and P8s are not okay to be used while P4s are allowed. What's the reason?
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Are there solfege syllables for diminished and augmented imperfect intervals?

Sometimes it is necessary to name notes and intervals differently based on how they are functioning and I was curious if this idea caired over to solfege. For example, the notes of a Co7 are C, Eb, ...
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1answer
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How can I construct the E7 only with theory?

I have a hard time with the following description of what a E7 consists of: What does the intervall relate to here? I try to apply it to the Notes (Töne) above it (E B d gis b e`) but that can't fit....
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Shouldn't all music intervals have five names? [closed]

Shouldn't technically all intervals have five names? (Maybe with few exceptions where it goes below zero semitones but still I can't see why it can't go below zero semitone when it can be played) ...
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Is a doubly augmented seventh a compound interval?

I'm reading about the theory behind intervals, and Wikipedia says: A compound interval is an interval spanning more than one octave. Does "spanning" in this case refer to the number of staff ...
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5answers
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Why do 7 chords use minor 7th while 6 chords use major 6ths?

If you play the chord C7, you would play the root, major third, fifth, and minor seventh (C - E - G - B♭), but if you play C6, you play the root, major third, fifth, and major sixth (C - E - G - ...
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How to properly unresolve melodies to achieve dissonance and darkness in music [closed]

I'm looking to understand music theory behind dissonance, unresolved dark music. What makes a song sound serious and not "rainbows". When writing a bassline or melodies, is it possible to achieve ...
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3answers
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Classification of 9th, 11th, and 13th intervals by consonance and dissonance

An interval is classified by its consonance or dissonance: as an open consonance (unison, perfect fifth, octave), a soft consonance (major and minor third and sixth), mild dissonance (major second ...
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6answers
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What is this scale? [Root , +1 , +3 , +1 , +2 , +1 , +3 , +1]

Intervals (relative to previous note): Root , +1 , +3 , +1 , +2 , +1 , +3 , +1 (Root again) Example: A, Bb, C#, D, E, F, G# This scale is used often in Turkish Music. But I don't know if it has a ...
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Why do we start from the bottom note when counting intervals?

Say if I play G to C descending, my intuition tells me to start from the note that came first. But I've been told that's not correct. You start from the bass note and count up no matter what.
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8answers
670 views

Confused about intervals and keys, does the former depends on the latter?

Sorry if my question is too trivial, I'm trying to understand intervals and keys. I've read on Wikipedia that a third "is a musical interval encompassing three staff positions and the major third is a ...
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2answers
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Melodic Criticism - Exercise 3.16G, Laitz The Complete Musician 2nd Edition

The question asks to find the weaknesses or problems (based on the general guidelines for melody writing presented in the preceding section) in the following melodic contour (tunes without rhythm or ...
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Which are all the musical intervals that are valid?

I have been reading around many sources, but it seems there is not a full standardized way in naming intervals, some sources say that such a thing as a diminished first exist. So I started making an ...
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1answer
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Statistics about the frequency of different type of intervals

Do you know if any statistics about the frequency of different type of intervals in music (of a certain period or by a specific composer) exist? For instance, suppose you have this piece of music in ...
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1answer
216 views

Lower interval limits

I've heard about this concept of lower interval limits: An arbitrary limit to how low any given pattern of harmonic intervals can be played before it starts to sound muddy. It generally predicts that ...
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4answers
187 views

Melody And Intervals [closed]

How do composers think about intervals like minor, major,etc to compose melody? Eg I know playing major third will invoke happy mood....that is if we play C and then E creates happier environment......
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2answers
751 views

Transcribing as music and relative pitch practice?

I've read some good transcriptions recently and watched transcribe videos from 8-Bit Music Theory on YouTube and I was thinking if it's considered to be a good relative-pitch / interval / music ...
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1answer
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Diminished Intervals - does a double diminished interval exist?

I'm doing practise questions for an upcoming test, and I have to name an interval from E to G double flat. Would that be a double diminished third? I'm not sure what to call it. Also if I invert it ...