All you need to know about music theory intervals.

In music theory, there is a concept called intervals. This term is used a lot and is very important to understand if you wish to learn music well. Intervals are the foundation for western music (music that we know of in America). All chords, melodies, scale, and everything else that is used in music is based on intervals. Without intervals there wouldn’t be music as we know it today. So in this article I am going to explain what intervals are and a little bit about the different types of intervals.

So what exactly is an interval? It is the distance between 2 notes. For example if you are on a basketball court and you run from one hoop to the other, that is an interval. An interval is a distance between 2 objects.  When you have 2 notes in music they create an interval. The notes are the object that creates the distance. There are many types of intervals. Let’s take a look at some of the different types and learn about them.

There will be some new vocabulary you should learn to understand the different types of intervals. The first thing you should consider about intervals is the distance between the 2 notes. Some intervals have very small distances, this is called small intervals. If the distance is long between the 2 intervals the word is wide intervals. There is definite definition of small or wide intervals, but typically seconds and thirds are considered small, Fourths and more are considered wide.

Another consideration when it comes to intervals is the sound of the 2 notes. Does it sound good or does it sound bad? When you hear 2 notes played together or one after the other you will hear that the note resonates well and seems relaxing. The good sounding intervals are called consonant. The bad sounding intervals which clash and sound harsh are called dissonant intervals. Examples of dissonant intervals are the raised fourth and the upper seventh.

Intervals are a very important concept to understand in music. All Scales, arpeggios, guitar licks and melodies are based on intervals. In this lesson you learned what intervals are and about different types of intervals. You have small and wide intervals depending how the distance between the notes and you have consonant and dissonant intervals depending on their sound. Next lesson we will learn how to tell what the interval distance is. Discuss below!

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One Response to All you need to know about music theory intervals.

  1. Chris says:

    I never knew about consonant intervals before! Really, I didn’t. Thank you for explaining that so well!

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