## Mixolydian Mode

I’ve been quiet lately because I’ve been working on an animation of my song Real Girl. It’s a complicated one, a dance of harmonic tension and resolution. The bass and melody chase each other around the lattice like courting butterflies. Meanwhile, there’s more to be extracted from the Be Love video. A mode is a…

## Extending the lattice

As I’ve analyzed my songs on the lattice, and written new music using it as a tool, I have found that I have a certain palette of notes in my mind, a territory of the lattice that I can hear and think with. The notes in this portion are distinct individuals for me. Each one…

## The Untempered Chromatic Scale (Part 1)

The familiar 12-note scale is also called the chromatic scale. There are many ways to generate an untempered version of such a scale. The oldest way seems to be Pythagorean tuning. When you multiply a frequency by 3, you get a new note, an octave plus a fifth above. Multiply by 3 again, and you get…

## Melodic Space, Harmonic Space

Throughout my musical education, I’ve been taught that music happens in a linear space. This is the space so beautifully laid out on the piano keyboard. Music teaching is organized around scales. In most Western music, the full scale consists of twelve notes, equally spaced. Other scales, such as the seven-note minor and major scales,…

## The Major Third

Multiplying a note by 2 creates an octave, and multiplying it by 3 creates a perfect fifth. Multiplying by 5 gives yet another new note, the pure major third.5-1 5/1 is over two octaves above the original note, so you have to reduce it twice (divide by 4) to get it down into the same octave.5-4…