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Music Theory 101 - Part IV

Welcome to my weekly blog post about music for musicians. This is part IV of a series about music theory.

One thing I would like to add to last week's blog posting about intervals is I need to mention that there is one other type of interval, minor. A minor interval would be an interval that has one whole step and then one half.

Gentle Haven Music, Web Design, Theory, Musicians

For example, if you go to a middle C on a keyboard and go up 1 and 1/2 steps to an Eb, you have a minor third interval.

Intervals are a beautiful way of complimenting a song, (at the right time) or as written in a great work. One of the best examples of interval work can be heard in Johann Sebastian Bach's Chaconne.

I realize that many of you are much younger than I and are probably wondering about why you would want to listen to 'old' music?

Well, Mr. Bach was THE eminent Rock Star of his day, but I understand why it could seem outdated. I looked around and found a music instructor who in her 20's, realizes she needed to add some more up-to-date examples of intervals. Her name is: Ashley Evelyn Mazur. She has a blog page where she culled together "29 fresh, modern songs" that demonstrate the concepts I've been discussing here for the last 3 installments.

That pretty much covers everything that I wanted to discuss about intervals. The next topic I would like to cover with you is: Triads.

Gentle Haven Music, Web Design, Theory, Musicians

Triads will probably be the most recognizable sound for musicians as they’re constructed of a tonic, mediant, and dominant tones, or, a first, third, and fifth. They are also some of the richest structures that a musician works with.

Many instrumentalists have seen chordal sheet music that has basic triads: C, F, and G listed. These can be mixed up with different bass notes, inverted, added to as with extended notes, e.g., C2, and even enhanced with augmented or diminished tones.

Building on some of the previous blogs we can see that triads are simply a combination of different portions of a diatonic scale. These can get complex very quickly, but if you feel you're getting lost or confused, read my first two music theory blogs as a refresher:

I'm going to stop there for this post because I'd rather not overload you, the reader. I would like to however change the subject next week and address a subject I read about today: Digital music.

There have been some good online articles recently about the proliferation of digital music and how it's changed the landscape for artists who want to get their music distributed. I will discuss that more next week.

In the meantime, go forth and make music!

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