Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Friday, May 15, 2009

4-Voice Pentatonic Canon

One interesting feature of the major pentatonic scale is that it has no half steps. A technical name for it that is sometimes used is anhemitonic pentatonic (literally "5 tone scale with no half steps").

In a practical sense this means that it is pretty difficult to produce harsh dissonance with only these tones. To demonstrate that fact, I offer this setting for string quartet of yesterday's melody. because the rhythm varies sufficiently from measure to measure, the parts will be distinct enough.

I have not altered any of the tones (except, of course, the simple transposition to a suitably resonant key for strings). Consecutive voices enter an octave apart.

(click on image to enlarge)

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