Questions tagged [intervals]

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

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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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Why is the 2nd note of a chord called major third?

On a piano, the root note of the C major chord is referred to as 1. The second note played is E, which is actually the fifth key when starting at C. Not 3? Yes this makes senses to call it a 3 when ...
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7answers
736 views

Why are there major and minor intervals?

I'm clearly thinking about this wrong, because it just doesn't make any sense to me. The way I'm mentally modelling intervals, a minor second should just be named a second (interval encompassing 2 ...
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2answers
298 views

In Four Part Writing, is an augmented unison interval in a single voice allowed?

I'm composing a traditional four-part part-writing piece with a soprano, alto, tenor and bass. The song progresses from a F Major chord to an A Major chord. In the former chord, the bass is on C, and ...
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3answers
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Having trouble doing multiple intervals at the same time

Ok, practicing my intervals and playing M3 and m3. If I do them one after another, and move from a low register to a high one and visa versa, I tend to cling onto the old tones and its making it very ...
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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 ...
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3answers
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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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426 views

“Tritone” intervals in n-tone equal temperament

In 12-tone equal temperament, the tritone interval is made of three whole tones (six semitones) and is considered, if I am not mistaken totally, as the most dissonant interval. I have two questions: ...
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Having trouble memorizing intervals in ear training

I've been using some of those interval training games like this one and I have tried some on my phone as well. The problem is that I don't think I'm making any progress. Right now (on the website I ...
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1answer
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Is a ♭ 3 a minor 3rd, a ♭♭3 a diminished 3rd, and ♭5 a diminished 5th?

I just need some clarification. Am I getting chords notated this way - 1-5-♭7-9-11, 1-3-5-♭7-♯11, 1-3-5-♭7-9-13, 1-4-5-♭7-9-13 - right? 3 == M3 5 == P5 ♭7 ==...
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Piano: Finger substitution vs spreading hand for different intervals

For the measures shown in the picture, I am able to reach the notes if I spread my hand but I'm not sure if this is good practice. I tried also to use finger substitution but I can make it work only ...
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Are 2 or more octaves perfect consonant?

According to my knowledge, an octave is considered as a perfect consonant. But are 2 or more octaves considered perfect consonant? For example, is C1 and C5 perfect consonant?
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2answers
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What interval do all the modes have in common?

I was watching a video exercise to play all of the modes you can over a power chord A5 in this case. Is there an interval that all modes share over a particular tonic (A in this example)?
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What are the characteristic intervals or scales of 13-limit harmony and beyond?

I've been studying and really getting into the Extended Just Intonation music of composers like Ben Johnston and Kyle Gann. I've started trying to explore the sort of intervals and scales that are ...
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9answers
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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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2answers
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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 ...
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Are these parallel octaves?

I am writing a chorale in C flat major and I currently have a 3 chord going to a I6 chord. Stacked, the chords are EGEB to EGEC. Is this considered parallel octaves? HELP.
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Tips on identifying intervals by ear?

So, I'm a guitar player, and I'm taking a music theory class. All of the theory we're learning about sort of revolves around the piano. And I've never really had any formal training with theory, I ...
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iOS app that recognises intervals

I am developing my aural skills and in Ron Gorow's Hearing and Writing music it is suggested that learning to sing an interval will help internalise it. Is there an iOS app I can sing into which will ...
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9answers
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What is a perfect fifth?

I have gone through many documents, but don't understand what a perfect fifth is. Can somebody please explain with an example? (An example is important!) I have already found these explanations, but ...
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3answers
347 views

Augmented 5th on B double sharp?

So a perfect fifth on B natural is F♯, an augmented 5th on B natural is F♯♯, would that then mean that an augmented 5th on B♯♯ would be F♯♯♯♯?
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3answers
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More dissonant chords/intervals in the bass clef when frequency proportions are the same?

Take for example C augmented. It sounds more consonant in the treble clef above middle C and more dissonant in the bass clef. However the proportions of the frequencies are exactly the same. This ...
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1answer
854 views

What is a parallel seventh?

Does anyone know what this is? I was reading a book and they mentioned this. It might be something to do with scales but I am completely unsure.
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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) ...
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5answers
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Why do notes have multiple names?

I've seen the same note called different names for example the note F# can also be written as Gb. Why is this the case and are there times to use one name over another?
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leaps: small vs. large (learning counterpoint)

I'm reading Harmony in Context by Roig-Francoli as a first theory text to teach myself composition. In his Introduction to Species Counterpoint chapter, he mentions that the melody should consist of ...
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4answers
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Still Major Intervals?

I have a worksheet to prepare me for my A level music; however I'm confused when being asked to name these intervals: My logic is that as both the tonic and above note are both flat meaning the ...
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5answers
260 views

How to create an interval from a note which doesn't start a major scale

When constructing an interval, e.g. a major third from A I work like this: Count three notes including the starting one, so A, B, C Now check on the circle of fifths whether A major scale has an ...
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3answers
434 views

Distinguishing intervals

I've been practicing on an Ear Trainer program for my iPhone, and I've noticed a distinct pattern. The way the program works you tell it what intervals/scales/chords you want to practice, and it'll ...
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13answers
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What makes an interval “Perfect”?

I've been trying to find an answer, but to no avail. Is what we call a perfect interval somewhat arbitrary? It seems as if the modern definition is "perfect under inversion". I know the other thing ...
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1answer
239 views

How to abbreviate multiply -diminished or -augmented intervals

I know they aren't used often, but how do you abbreviate a doubly-, triply-, or otherwise multiply- diminished or augmented intervals? For instance, a perfect fifth is abnbreviated P5, a diminished ...
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1answer
120 views

Multiply-diminished intervals from a major

I know that starting from a perfect interval and shortening the interval by two semitones gives a doubly-diminished interval. But what about starting with a major interval? For instance, starting ...
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3answers
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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 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. (...
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1answer
879 views

Is i-V a stronger progression than I-V?

I'm just starting to learn a little music theory (in connection with learning to play the ukelele), and I repeatedly see I-V as basically the strongest chord progression (in whatever sense "strongest" ...
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3answers
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How often does each interval appear in the harmonic series (relative to the fundamental)?

For practical purposes, lets assume a limited harmonic series. How many harmonics are a fifth? How many a minor third? And so on. What intervals are commonly found in the harmonic series? What ...
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2answers
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Naming Scale Degrees

As I understand the minor pentatonic degrees are 1 b3 4 5 7b It says b3 & 7b, does it matter which side the b is on and do they both mean flat? Scale degrees are almost always based off the Major ...
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3answers
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Interval of a 4th above the bass

As I was studying music theory (harmonizing a melody in particular) I got confused with the statement: The interval of a 4th above the bass is considered dissonant and must resolve down by step. ...
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3answers
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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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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 ...
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2answers
126 views

Equal Interval Usage

So I was thinking, similar to sharps and flat notes, interval usage is contextual. In the same way that Bb is the same as A#, a diminished fifth is the same as an augmented forth etc. I understand ...
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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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6answers
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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 ...
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3answers
553 views

Chord notation for stacked and inverted chords or intervals?

I understand how chord notation works for the most part, but I'm wondering how I would notate intervals, octaves, and specific chords. P1, m3, & P5 is Cmin. P1, P5 is C5 But, how do we notate P1 ...
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5answers
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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 ...
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5answers
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Chords and Intervals - Unison

Just trying to wrap my head around intervals but I'm confused by Unison. If I am playing a chord on a piano, how do you play a Unison chord if you can't press the same key twice at the same time? ...
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6answers
710 views

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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1answer
151 views

Are same interval leaps consented in second species counterpoint?

I've been told that, in second species counterpoint, presenting the same interval in 2 consecutive bars is an error. What then if the intervals skips in opposite directions? Like this: Is this ...
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4answers
848 views

Recognizing downwards intervals by humming corresponding upwards interval - bad practice?

Originally I tried to recognize intervals by ear through the use of songs (e.g. m3 = first two notes in Greensleeves). This worked until I got to m6-M7, where the songs I had for downwards intervals ...
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4answers
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Theory of Major and Minor Chord Sounds

Since a major triad is comprised of a minor-third stacked on top of a major-third, and a minor triad is comprised of a major-third stacked on top of a minor-third, they should, in "theory", have the ...