Basic Music Theory:

2 comment(s) so far...have your say!

B to C and E to F are semitones - Why the difference?


qrcode for - B to C and E to F are semitones - Why the difference?
Why are B/C and E/F semitones?

In medieval times, when instruments were first being forged in a sort of way that divided the octave, the only notes that were there at that time were A to G, without any sharps or flats. Now, most singers, due to the peculiarity of the human construction, sing in the C major scale - or did so back then. These accompaniments were thus designed to hit all the notes of the C (major) scale. Looking at it conversely, the 8 notes that humans use to sing mostly were named from C D E F G A and B.

With the advent of chords and improvement in the music theory, the accidentals came in. The Chords G and F are commonly associated with C. To form them we need F# and Bb respectively. Thus they came into existence. In other words, B had to be flattened and F had to be sharpened to get these. Gradually we got the full complement of sharps and flats.

Now, the scales are derived from the Greek modes. These are permutations and combinations of four half and whole notes (tetrachords).

Ionian mode is whole-whole-half. Now two Ionian modes joined by a whole note interval (Ionian-whole-Ionian) will thus be:

whole-whole-half-whole-whole-whole-half (2-2-1-2-2-2-1) or a major scale.

Thus naming all the notes derived by adding intervals in the above order, starting at C, we get the C major scale, where we find that E to F and B to C are half notes apart (semitones).

B to C and E to F semitones

http://basicmusictheory.blogspot.com/2009/04/b-to-c-and-e-to-f-semitones-why.html



Liked 'B to C and E to F are semitones - Why the difference?' enough to share / save?

B to C and E to F are semitones - Why the difference?

Comments: 2 comment(s)...have your say!

Evansaid...

"The Chords G and F are commonly associated with C. To form them we need F# and Bb respectively."

This doesn't make sense to me. The chords G and F can be made with notes in the C major scale. A G chord doesn't contain an F# and an F chord doesn't contain a Bb.

The G major scale needs an F# and the F major scale needs a Bb. Is that what you mean? Or are you referring to Gmaj7 and Fmaj7 chords? If so, how are either of these constructs "commonly associated with C"?

(I'm no expert and I mean no disrespect. I'm just curious about what you mean.)

Arindam Sarkarsaid...

First of all, let me thank you for bringing this up. That sentence - reading now - was indeed a bit less that well formed. As you have already guessed, I did mean the scales only and not the chords.

Stating clearly for others, I meant : "The G major scale needs an F# and the F major scale needs a Bb"

BasicMusicTheory Tip:

Tune your guitar before you start playing.^Top^
 





# Hosted for free on Blogspot.com / "Powered by Blogger." Get yours today at www.blogger.com
# The material collected and made available through these sites is exclusively intended for private study, research & to provide study material for musicians - in good faith. (Copyrights)
# This site uses cookies to offer you a better browsing experience. Kindly read the Terms of Service & Privacy policy and continue only if you agree.
# Copyrights, wherever applicable: IndianGuitarChords.Blogspot.Com (™ ©) / Arindam Sarkar © - MMVIII - MMXVI