Stack Exchange Network

Stack Exchange network consists of 175 Q&A communities including Stack Overflow, the largest, most trusted online community for developers to learn, share their knowledge, and build their careers.

Visit Stack Exchange

Questions tagged [intervals]

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

0
votes
2answers
220 views

How do I use the 'white-key method' as an aid for memorizing intervals?

I'm working my way through the Open Music Theory digital textbook (http://openmusictheory.com/). There is a chapter that describes intervals and how to determine their quality. The introductory ...
7
votes
2answers
2k views

What is so special about the devil's interval?

I'm interested in learning more of the Devil's interval, how it originated, some of its uses and what exactly about the interval of a diminished fifth makes it sound ominous?
4
votes
9answers
1k views

Trick to figure out what the proper note to play is when playing in thirds?

Take for example the melody C D E F G A B in the key of c major. If i play the melody in thirds, I have been told that you would play it C E; D F; E G; etc. but some of those form minor 3rds and some ...
0
votes
1answer
83 views

How does ear training help me find the key of a song?

I want to understand how ear training to identify different intervals helps me figure out what notes are in a song, and what key it's in.
5
votes
1answer
115 views

Consonance/Dissonance of 5th according to the explanation of 4th

The consonance of the 4th interval depends on the context, as several music theory sources describe. Why isn't that idea generalized to all intervals? Let me illustrate this comparing what I have in ...
1
vote
0answers
85 views

Which musical interval is used for questions in English? [closed]

In many human languages, including English, questions are marked with a raised pitch. In some languages, this is pretty much the only way to express that you want to ask a question, but even in ...
2
votes
3answers
218 views

Need some help with perfect fifth power chords

Okay, so I have played guitar for quite some time, but I chose to take up tattooing for a career for about 10 years which left me no time to enjoy playing anymore. So needless to say, I ended up ...
2
votes
2answers
705 views

Memorizing fret board intervals

Fret board intervals; When playing and looking at the guitar fretboard, is it best to mentally use pictorial patterns, (chords, scales, modes, arpeggios) to help in the (my) solo direction, or ...
2
votes
2answers
498 views

What makes an interval “perfect”? Is this scale-dependent? [duplicate]

Ok, so I am very curious about why the major scale 4th and 5th are deemed "perfect" while other intervals are "major." This may just be an arbitrary thing based on sounds we find pleasing, but I've ...
20
votes
12answers
2k views

Can a chord contain both the C and C♯ notes? (as opposed to containing C and D♭ notes)

Can a chord contain both the C and C♯ notes? Or do you always have to use D♭ rather than C♯ in a chord that already contains the note C? I'm guessing the answer is no, both C and C♯ should not be ...
3
votes
3answers
160 views

Are intervals always used in the context of a scale?

Can an interval be a measure of absolute distance between any given note to another, or is it always used in the context of a scale, where each note in the scale has a corresponding interval value? ...
7
votes
8answers
8k views

Correct octave technique

I am an amateur pianist (of about 17 years) and I'm not sure if I ever learned correct octave technique. I just "finished" Chopin's first ballad and there are several sections which require some ...
52
votes
8answers
10k views

Which notes are optional in jazz chords?

I have a question on jazz chords, and what notes can be removed from the chord. My understanding is fairly superficial - mostly from what I've read in books. This is what I understand: In some chords,...
4
votes
1answer
81 views

Meaning of sharp/flat third and sixth in text from the XVI century

In a text from Thomas Morley's treatise A plaine and easie introduction to practicall musicke (1597) he refers to the motion of melody proceeding by "half steps, flat thirds and flat sixths" or by "...
2
votes
1answer
646 views

Is there such a thing as a diminished unison? [duplicate]

I'm working through Mark Sarnecki's Rudiments of music theory book, and I'm digesting the bit about augmented and diminished intervals. I'm confused as to how a diminished unison can exist. By ...
1
vote
2answers
192 views

How to enharmonically change the bottom note of the interval A# to E#

A# to E# is a perfect fifth, and an exercise book I am working through says to enharmonically change the bottom note and identify the resulting interval. I cannot see any possibility except rewriting ...
9
votes
1answer
523 views

What is the idea of “transposing by perfect unison”?

As far as I understand, a "perfect unison" refer to two notes sounding the same pitch. Why both MuseScore and Sibelius 7 (I work with these two programs) offer a feature to transpose the up or down by ...
1
vote
1answer
273 views

Word request - a unison part

What do you call a part or a moment in music when several players play it in unison. For instance in rock music when a bass player, guitar player, keyboard player and drummer play a part in unison ...
0
votes
2answers
240 views

Scale Families: heptatonic scales organized by half-steps in their intervallic spelling

Consider a note a collection of frequencies, a mode a collection of seven notes, and a scale a collection of seven modes. Hence, C is a collection of frequencies, CDEFGAB a collection of notes, the ...
8
votes
3answers
689 views

Why wasn't the actual “semitone” taken as the unit and therefore called “a tone”?

A more practical formulation of the question is "Why do we count by tones, instead of semitones?", but its meaning could be misinterpreted; the target of the question is actually on the concept of "1 ...
0
votes
3answers
414 views

Why are there different names for the same interval? [duplicate]

The intervals F-B and B-F are called Augmented Fourth and Diminished Fifth respectively, but they are really both the same interval - a tritone. Why are they named differently?
21
votes
6answers
1k views

Why don't we measure the size of intervals starting from zero?

Note: italics such as "2nd" refer to my proposed notation; existing notation is written without italics: "2nd". Why is the interval between C and D called a 2nd, as they are 1 note apart? Surely this ...
5
votes
4answers
802 views

Defining intervals.

There seems to be a lot of confusion over naming intervals. Some seem to think it involves major intervals being from major keys/scales, thus minor intervals need to follow from that. Some seem to ...
5
votes
7answers
2k views

How do you determine intervals? Is it based on major and minor keys?

If we say C to E, we say it's a major third since it is belongs to the major scale. If we say C to E♭, we say it's a minor third since it belongs to a minor scale. What about C to D, F, or G? ...
12
votes
5answers
4k views

Why is a minor 3rd consonant but an augmented 2nd dissonant?

I am currently reading the Jazzology and on the chapter per the consonant and dissonant intervals I came across this statement: while a minor 3rd is consonant, an augmented 2nd is dissonant. (...
2
votes
2answers
197 views

Available Tensions for Modal Scale Degrees

I have a bit of a tricky topic here. I've been getting into bebop progressions, and I'm really enjoying myself. However the one thing I was missing was those nice lush chords you come by every so ...
2
votes
3answers
2k views

Voice leading rule hidden fifths/octaves

Good afternoon everyone! Sometime 2 years ago I started practicing voice leading for 4 voices, but since I had to spend all my time on school I kind of stopped halfway. Since I graduated I've picked ...
2
votes
1answer
100 views

What is the relationship between certain semitones and intervals? [closed]

There appears to be a relationship between the diatonic semitone and the perfect fifth and a relationship between the chromatic semitone and the perfect fourth, but I am not sure why. Specifically: *...
1
vote
0answers
101 views

Why is there a relationship between the diatonic semitone and the perfect fifth and between the chromatic semitone and the perfect fourth? [closed]

I have recently been struggling with the derivation of the diatonic and chromatic semitones. I have laid out my detailed thinking below. In short, there appears to be a relationship between the ...
0
votes
2answers
167 views

Ideas for how to use the minor(add9) chord

I've started writing a piece of music for guitar which starts with a really cool arpeggio with the Dm (add9) chord. However, I don't really know how to progress from here and I'm noodling with a few ...
15
votes
5answers
20k views

How to differentiate between a diminished fifth and an augmented fourth interval?

Both are a tritone appart, both sound the same. How can we differentiate when an interval is an augmented fourth or a diminished fifth? Context: In voice leading we learn that when the spelling of ...
2
votes
3answers
280 views

Intervals for ear training

I heard people mention training to recognize intervals many many times. What I am a bit confused about is this. Do you train to recognize intervals from a given note to the root, or to the preceding ...
1
vote
2answers
90 views

What scale contains the pattern - Root, +2, +1, +3, +1, +2, +1, +2?

Intervals (relative to previous note): Root, +2, +1, +3, +1, +2, +1, +2 (Root again) Example: A, B, C, D#, E, F#, G I happened to come across this scale pattern while playing scales on guitar and ...
1
vote
1answer
94 views

What is the least amount of (famous) songs possible that covers up all the 25 intervals (asc+desc+P1)? [duplicate]

I play the piano for two years now and I would like to focus much more on ear training from now on. I'm able to know if a wrong note has been played, but do not have the ability to identify what note ...
9
votes
5answers
4k views

Understanding the claim - “If composers want sad music, they use those two notes” [B&C]

Recently I had seen a great TED talk by Benjamin Zander in which he says (about Chopin's 4th prelude): ...... The first note is a B. [plays B] The next note is a C. [plays C] The job of the C is ...
14
votes
3answers
2k views

Does a diminished first exist?

Are there any instances where the first note in a scale/chord is "diminished"? For instance, could a Db occur in a D chord, where the context explicitly requires that this is a Db (diminished first) ...
8
votes
4answers
585 views
2
votes
6answers
905 views

Confusion about intervals in chromatic VS diatonic scales

I hear terms like "fifths" and "minor thirds" and "thirds" used all the time in musical theory discussion and while I know some places I can use these terms I'm unclear if there are multiple meanings/...
5
votes
2answers
699 views

Harmony and Simplified Ratios of Frequency

I stumbled on this question while checking a grade 7 mathematics book. It grabbed my eyes having been introduced to some of music's amazing topics. I know that harmony ( or more accurately, ...
4
votes
5answers
840 views

Why is C-F# a diminished fifth instead of an augmented fourth?

It fits the strict definition of both, so it seems a bit weird to me that we choose to call it a diminished fifth. Seems very arbitrary as they are the same.
1
vote
2answers
195 views

Why do intervals have such complicated names?

In a ruler I have 1cm, 2cm, 3cm, 4cm, etc. Why isn't there in music: 1st, 2st, 3st, 4st, etc. (where st = semitone) But instead we have: Minor second, Major second, Minor third, Major third, Perfect ...
3
votes
2answers
475 views

Do non-tonic ear training exercises hurt music students?

I've always had a problem with some of the songs that are used to remember what an interval sounds like. Particularly, the ones whose melodies don't start on the tonic. For example, Here Comes The ...
12
votes
1answer
1k views

Recognizing modulation style / pattern in Steely Dan's “West of Hollywood”

I'm a fan of Steely Dan's music, but I find analysis of their music to be difficult from a tone-, modal-, and chord-theory point of view. But perhaps the complex jazz-influenced M7/M9/M11 chords ...
2
votes
1answer
338 views

Playing a solo in thirds

"If you navigate in thirds, getting to chord tones by threading thirds in a million different combinations, you will always be melodic, not just playing scales. For a beginning jazz student, I ...
1
vote
3answers
466 views

How do I mark intervals?

I am wondering for when there is a white to white note transition (E to F, B to C) is there a change in the way I mark an interval compared to how I have been taught so far, basically that the staff ...
2
votes
2answers
759 views

Quartal and quintal chords?

Does anyone know about Quartal Quintal chords and harmony? Except from the difference in the interval being stacked?
8
votes
1answer
333 views

What is the history of the Augmented Second in World Music

In his book Gypsy Music, Bálint Sárosi states that the Augmented Second --- as found between the second and third, third and fourth, sixth and seventh in a lot of Gypsy as well as Indian and Middle ...
3
votes
6answers
319 views

What have I misunderstood about calculating intervals?

Caution: I have studied single-variable calculus, but have never taken a physics course. Vi Hart demonstrates with a violin that on a violin string's length, playing at: 1/2 produces a note an ...
22
votes
9answers
14k views

What is the full list of possible chord names? Are there chords that don't have a name in chord theory?

My chord book covers 35 different chord types. When I look on the web or in other tools, all the same types of chords come up. But I don't think this is the "full" set of possible chords. I'm not ...
2
votes
1answer
297 views

Sun-Ra's harmonies and intervals for the layperson

I heard an interview the saxophonist John Gilmore gave about Sun-Ra: "His intervals, his knowledge of intervals and harmony are very highly advanced." I'm a layperson without a background in music ...