You are here

Question about intervals

Arrangement, instrumentation, lyric writing, music theory, inspiration… it’s all here.

Question about intervals

Postby jellyjim » Thu Apr 07, 2016 2:54 pm

If I play a C and then the D a whole tone up, that's obviously a major 2nd. If I play the same C then a D an octave above the original D, is that still a major 2nd? The interval is obviously an example. The point is, going above the octave.
User avatar
jellyjim
Frequent Poster
Posts: 1473
Joined: Wed May 15, 2002 12:00 am
Location: uk
Original artwork and unique devices inspired by vintage technology http://www.thisisobsolete.com

Re: Question about intervals

Postby shufflebeat » Thu Apr 07, 2016 3:05 pm

9th, as in C9.
shufflebeat
Frequent Poster (Level2)
Posts: 3918
Joined: Sun Dec 09, 2007 1:00 am
Location: Manchester, UK
I don't know much but I'm happy to share my ignorance with anyone who can use it.

Re: Question about intervals

Postby Guest » Thu Apr 07, 2016 4:48 pm

I've always wondered this too? Is it a 9th only wiv chords. Wot about individual notes, which i think is the question. I understand that above and below say mid C the octaves just repeat and when writing/harmonising i just treat the intervals, above or below my root position as being the same, a 2nd 3rd 4th 5th etc, is this wrong? because they they do seem to say the exact same thing/have the exact same effect, above or below?
Guest

Re: Question about intervals

Postby Sam Inglis » Thu Apr 07, 2016 6:14 pm

The *interval* is a second if the C and D notes are adjacent on the keyboard, and a *ninth* if they are separated by an octave.

The *chord* of C9 can be voiced in lots of ways, many of which don't contain an interval of a ninth. For instance, (from bottom) C G E B D would be a C9 chord, but with the C and D separated by two octaves. E C D E G would be a C9 chord in the first inversion with the C and D only a second apart.
Sam Inglis
Frequent Poster (Level2)
Posts: 2447
Joined: Fri Dec 15, 2000 1:00 am

Re: Question about intervals

Postby Exalted Wombat » Thu Apr 07, 2016 6:36 pm

Sam Inglis wrote:The *interval* is a second if the C and D notes are adjacent on the keyboard, and a *ninth* if they are separated by an octave.

The *chord* of C9 can be voiced in lots of ways, many of which don't contain an interval of a ninth. For instance, (from bottom) C G E B D would be a C9 chord, but with the C and D separated by two octaves. E C D E G would be a C9 chord in the first inversion with the C and D only a second apart.

We might as well get this right. There's C9 and there's C(add9). The first one is an extension of C7, so it includes Bb. The second one is a C triad with D added.

You'll also see C2, C(add2) and Csus2. The waters get murky - musicians love arguing just what these SHOULD mean and what they often DO mean in practice. And don't start me on the various (mis)uses of C11 :-)

Never discuss this subject with a Berklee-infulenced guitarist. They have their own, twisted view of harmony, largely based on what scales fit what chords when playing their beloved "widdley".
Exalted Wombat
Jedi Poster
Posts: 5679
Joined: Sat Feb 06, 2010 1:00 am
Location: London UK
You don't have to write songs. The world doesn't want you to write songs. It would probably prefer it if you didn't. So write songs if you want to. Otherwise, dont. Go fishing instead.

Re: Question about intervals

Postby Guest » Thu Apr 07, 2016 10:19 pm

Oh my gosh here we go again. If i'm playing an octave bassline are the notes above my root then 9ths 11ths 13ths whatever etc and not the equivalent intervals as the root intervals y'know still a 2nd 4th 5th 6th etc whatever?

Or, if I've written a song in C maj and then add some harmonies and i decide the 2nd 3rd and 4th are too deep and i take 'em up an octave, is that now a 9th and no longer a 2nd etc, cos it sounds exactly the same to me except it's higher, to my ears it says exactly the same thing?

It seems I look on a 9th as being an octve 2nd, is this wrong? because to me it seems to say the exact same thing that a root 2nd says?

Not chords, i can understand adding an extra note or two to a triad can result in a 9th 13th etc but is that just a conveniant label.
Guest

Re: Question about intervals

Postby Sam Inglis » Fri Apr 08, 2016 8:35 am

Exalted Wombat wrote: There's C9 and there's C(add9). The first one is an extension of C7, so it includes Bb. The second one is a C triad with D added.

In the jazz/rock world a ninth chord is usually played with a flat seventh, yes, but it's perfectly possible to have a ninth chord with the major seventh. (In diatonic harmony, if you were going to built a ninth chord on the dominant it would have a flat seventh, but if you were building it on the tonic it would have a major seventh.)

Exalted Wombat wrote:
You'll also see C2, C(add2) and Csus2. The waters get murky - musicians love arguing just what these SHOULD mean and what they often DO mean in practice.

They do... I'd argue that 'C2' if it means anything at all is just a particular voicing of a C9.
Sam Inglis
Frequent Poster (Level2)
Posts: 2447
Joined: Fri Dec 15, 2000 1:00 am

Re: Question about intervals

Postby Guest » Fri Apr 08, 2016 8:54 am

Wot I'm trying to say is I'm more concerned wiv the function rather than the label, the function seems the same to me. The label doesn't seem to express that.
Guest

Re: Question about intervals

Postby CS70 » Fri Apr 08, 2016 12:23 pm

LdashD wrote:Or, if I've written a song in C maj and then add some harmonies and i decide the 2nd 3rd and 4th are too deep and i take 'em up an octave, is that now a 9th and no longer a 2nd etc, cos it sounds exactly the same to me except it's higher, to my ears it says exactly the same thing?

Well but they don't sound the same, don't they? It's quite a different frequency, so the tonal contribution can be expected to be significantly different. It makes sense that there should be different names. Whether or not the naming is consistent or logical is, as Sam says, another matter.

If what you're saying is that you find the sound first and then figure out how the chord is called, that's alright - it's an honored tradition in making music I guess.
User avatar
CS70
Frequent Poster (Level2)
Posts: 3639
Joined: Mon Nov 26, 2012 1:00 am
Location: Oslo, Norway
Silver Spoon - Check out our latest video  and the FB page

Re: Question about intervals

Postby Sam Spoons » Fri Apr 08, 2016 11:40 pm

Sam Inglis wrote:In the jazz/rock world a ninth chord is usually played with a flat seventh, yes, but it's perfectly possible to have a ninth chord with the major seventh.


Which would be a maj9th....

To me a C add2 and C add9 are the same chord, just described slightly differently (i.e. a C major with a D in there somewhere). A C2/C sus2 probably has one of the C's replaced with a D and a C9 is a C7 with a D on top. In all cases it's probably acceptable to be creative with the octaves and order that the notes appear (and indeed withe the notes that are left out, the standard gypsy jazz guitar chord 8x78xx (C A D#) functions as a perfectly acceptable F7 despite not having an F anywhere in sight (it has the 5 3 & b7 of the F scale). It also can be seen as a Cm6 (R 6 m3) or a C/A/D#dim. I realised this when I was a young guitar player learning Beatles tunes from the popular copy sheets. I suspect these were transcribed buy pianists and the complicated chords they came up with were down to John, Paul and George playing different things that just sounded nice together but were probably quite simple individually. But, all this is talking about chords and a single interval probably needs to be related to the key the piece is scored in and here I'm getting out of my depth (especially after half a bottle of red :))
User avatar
Sam Spoons
Jedi Poster
Posts: 9552
Joined: Thu Jan 23, 2003 1:00 am
Location: Manchester UK
Finally taking this recording lark seriously (and recording my Gypsy Jazz CD)........

Re: Question about intervals

Postby permanent_daylight » Sat Apr 09, 2016 1:03 am

add2 is just a different naming convention (and i expect plain wrong to certain circles)...to me i never really hear it, but why 9?. Well when i first read add2 i saw 'sus2' which is confusing and was about to prepare explaining the whole difference, that there is no third...Whilst you can't really confuse Cadd9 and C9 on a score as it looks totally different. Don't know if that's the real reason, i mean it could be simply conventions of inversions, that you get 'mud' or confused harmony in the eyes of more classical arrangements if the CDE is clumped together...of course for many styles post 1900 its really nice to use that!
permanent_daylight
Regular
Posts: 137
Joined: Sun Jun 25, 2006 12:00 am

Re: Question about intervals

Postby shufflebeat » Sat Apr 09, 2016 2:10 am

LdashD wrote:Wot I'm trying to say is I'm more concerned wiv the function rather than the label, the function seems the same to me. The label doesn't seem to express that.

Wot I fink you'll thind is that there's a discrepancy between how sound affects us as uneducated, visceral listeners, which is infinitely nuanced and unencumbered by theory and as stakeholders in the discourse of music development, engaged in the ever developing narrative of music as a language.

It would be a brave person indeed who would attempt to demarcate the boundaries of function of a particular chord, melody or indeed any sound. Tonight on R4 PM some people were asked to experience "The Archers" radio series for the first time. One reported the dramatic effect of a powerful storyline was totally undermined by the happy-go-lucky theme tune which followed. I was surprised at this because I've always found the theme to be quite mournful and austere, possibly partly because I dislike the programme.

I would suggest that anyone trying to predict the interpretation of and response to a piece of music, in other words it's function, is discussing the language of music (labels) which we buy into to varying degrees and according to our locality and history, rather than any intrinsic quality of the sound itself.
shufflebeat
Frequent Poster (Level2)
Posts: 3918
Joined: Sun Dec 09, 2007 1:00 am
Location: Manchester, UK
I don't know much but I'm happy to share my ignorance with anyone who can use it.

Re: Question about intervals

Postby Guest » Sat Apr 09, 2016 8:01 am

In C major, if'n i play a 1 3 5, that's C E G, at the root octave it has no movement, if i then shift just the 3 & 5 up an octave, and stay at root for the fundamental C, it still 'as no movement, is this correct?

And, if so, do not then the 2nd und so-called *9th* form the exact same function?

I can understand the need to label a chord in such a way, but i am referring to individual notes/intervals and their, (leaping & stepping) function within a I V I harmonic progression, so i look on a 9th as being, for arguments sake, an octave 2nd, is this wrong? cos to my ears it says the same thing, albeit an octave up, or down for that matter.
Guest

Re: Question about intervals

Postby shufflebeat » Sat Apr 09, 2016 9:38 am

There are similarities because the relationships between notes are similar, like rhyming, but they sound different so they're not the same thing.
shufflebeat
Frequent Poster (Level2)
Posts: 3918
Joined: Sun Dec 09, 2007 1:00 am
Location: Manchester, UK
I don't know much but I'm happy to share my ignorance with anyone who can use it.

Re: Question about intervals

Postby Sam Spoons » Sat Apr 09, 2016 9:39 am

Going back to intervals, the 2nd interval is 2 half steps, the 9th interval is 14 half steps. Other intervals can be similarly defined and labeled. A major 3rd is always 4 half steps, a 5th = 7 half steps etc. Chord naming is a different (though closely related) cauldron of aquatic creatures. A 9th chord can have it's '9th' buried 2 half steps above the root (which may not be there at all) but the chord must have a b7 in there somewhere (but not necessarily 10 half steps away from the root, present or not) if it doesn't it's an add9. Many chord voicings can have several different names if they are only partial chords, a C major with an A bass note effectively becomes an Am7 (depending on key and context, the A may be part of a descending bass line and then it's notated C/A). Many Jazz chords (see my example in my previous post) are voiced in this manner (and that's probably why the transcribers of early Beatles tunes applied such complex names to the chords they found). Another GJ chord example, 3x223x (fretting, low E > High E) which functions as a G6/9 (Rx695x) or a C6/9 (5x369x)......

'Tis all fascinating stuff :)
User avatar
Sam Spoons
Jedi Poster
Posts: 9552
Joined: Thu Jan 23, 2003 1:00 am
Location: Manchester UK
Finally taking this recording lark seriously (and recording my Gypsy Jazz CD)........

Re: Question about intervals

Postby Exalted Wombat » Sat Apr 09, 2016 10:28 am

Sam Inglis wrote:
Exalted Wombat wrote: There's C9 and there's C(add9). The first one is an extension of C7, so it includes Bb. The second one is a C triad with D added.

In the jazz/rock world a ninth chord is usually played with a flat seventh, yes, but it's perfectly possible to have a ninth chord with the major seventh. (In diatonic harmony, if you were going to built a ninth chord on the dominant it would have a flat seventh, but if you were building it on the tonic it would have a major seventh.)

Exalted Wombat wrote:
You'll also see C2, C(add2) and Csus2. The waters get murky - musicians love arguing just what these SHOULD mean and what they often DO mean in practice.

They do... I'd argue that 'C2' if it means anything at all is just a particular voicing of a C9.

So the ninth chord built on the dominant would be called "G9", one built on the tonic would be called "Cmaj9". All styles of music agree on that!

There are, very loosely, "C chords" and "ninth chords". But whether we're in a theory class or looking at a guitarist's book of chord shapes, "C" means a C major triad , "C7" means the triad plus the minor 7th, "C9" and "C13" are extensions of C7. If we want the major 7th we have to say so - "Cmaj7" or "Cmaj9". Then there's "C(add9)" which is the C major triad plus D - no 7th is implied. In a similar way, "C13" has the minor 7th while "C6" simply adds an A to the Cmajor triad. "C2" can be useful to indicate a particular voicing - the "Floyd Cramer" thing. It is similar to "C(add9)" but quite different to "C9" as it doesn't imply the minor 7th.
Exalted Wombat
Jedi Poster
Posts: 5679
Joined: Sat Feb 06, 2010 1:00 am
Location: London UK
You don't have to write songs. The world doesn't want you to write songs. It would probably prefer it if you didn't. So write songs if you want to. Otherwise, dont. Go fishing instead.

Re: Question about intervals

Postby Sam Spoons » Sat Apr 09, 2016 12:32 pm

and C sus 2 suggests the D replaces the C rather than is in addition to it (similarly a 'sus 4' replaces the 3rd with a 4th).....
User avatar
Sam Spoons
Jedi Poster
Posts: 9552
Joined: Thu Jan 23, 2003 1:00 am
Location: Manchester UK
Finally taking this recording lark seriously (and recording my Gypsy Jazz CD)........

Re: Question about intervals

Postby Exalted Wombat » Sat Apr 09, 2016 1:53 pm

Sam Spoons wrote:and C sus 2 suggests the D replaces the C rather than is in addition to it (similarly a 'sus 4' replaces the 3rd with a 4th).....

There's a lot of resistence to "C2" from theorists who want everything to be explainable as a "pile of thirds". Though they don't seem to mind "C6" or even "C6/9". And then, like I said, there's "Guitarists' chord theory". They have some VERY strange ideas :-)
Exalted Wombat
Jedi Poster
Posts: 5679
Joined: Sat Feb 06, 2010 1:00 am
Location: London UK
You don't have to write songs. The world doesn't want you to write songs. It would probably prefer it if you didn't. So write songs if you want to. Otherwise, dont. Go fishing instead.

Re: Question about intervals

Postby damoore » Sat Apr 09, 2016 2:02 pm

You mean the third I am sure, not the root.

Not everybody would agree that the sus replaces the third, but generally if the third is kept, it is treated as a tenth rather than a third. i.e. it's on top. It's usual not to play the third when comping though, of course, the tonic (sus) 2 and third, and even the minor 7 on the bottom can work as a cluster on an EP patch when everyone is wailing.
damoore
Frequent Poster
Posts: 988
Joined: Sun Jul 05, 2009 12:00 am
Location: New Hampshire

Re: Question about intervals

Postby Sam Inglis » Sat Apr 09, 2016 2:03 pm

Exalted Wombat wrote:

So the ninth chord built on the dominant would be called "G9", one built on the tonic would be called "Cmaj9". All styles of music agree on that!

That's probably a sensible convention, but in the dim and distant days when I used to hang around with classically trained people, they would use the term 'seventh' to refer to whichever seventh note was diatonic (maybe because they were trained to use figured bass?). So I'm not sure it's quite as universal as all that.

Anyway, it's kind of irrelevant!
Sam Inglis
Frequent Poster (Level2)
Posts: 2447
Joined: Fri Dec 15, 2000 1:00 am

Next

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users