#1
Okay so really I'm not much of a music theorist buy I do understand relationships, etc and scales/chords. I'm confused as to why some piece might be written in the key of Cb major when the notes are the same as the key of B major? I understand that the only change in the two is that you're starting on a different root note when playing the scale but in all reality, to me, you are playing the same notes and just naming the enharmonics differently. Where am I wrong and why would a musician decide on Cb major over B major? Even starting the piece from the beginning with the "key" note would be the same note (i.e. B is enharmonic to Cb).
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#2
Believe me, it's a lot of practically useless naming of stuff in theory. I believe it has to do with context, example being that a note can be a sharp third or a flat third depending on what you label the scale as. i think, at least.

Sonically it sounds the same, though x)
#4
I thought Cb WAS B? Just like Fb is E? Because there's only a semi-tone interval between the two
#6
I have never seen a piece that starts and ends in Cb, that seems just fancy talk... However, when a piece is for example in Gb, and there is modulation to the IV, you'd call it Cb and not B because there is no B in the key Gb, if you understand. However, you coul call Gb F# so you wouldn't have to use the Cb but could just a B, since that is in F#.

Yeah
#7
It all has to do with nomenclature and what not. For example, a D in Cb minor is a #2, whereas in B minor it is a b3.

And they do not sound the same. They may be enharmonic, but they function differently.
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#8
I'm not that oriented in sheet music but when reading notation it can sometimes be a lot easier reading a line going from say Eb-Db C and then C with a "b" infront of it on the notation instead of a B since that would make the note itself do a little jump onto the line beneath. But I guess it's personal taste and depending on the situation.
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#9
Most composers write in the simpler key, alot of the time composers write out chords with the wrong spelling just so it's easier to read. Then you get the Muso composers who write in G#major or Fx major.
#10
Quote by griffRG7321
Then you get the Muso composers who write in G#major or Fx major.
Oh dear God. I think once you start getting into double sharps and flats that's a bit too far.
Only play what you hear. If you don’t hear anything, don’t play anything.
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#11
How many songs/pieces do you know that are assumedly in Cb?

Q: Why would you do this when you could do this?
A: You wouldn't.

Well, it's not always impractical: for instance, if a certain note is Cb in some context and then you modulate to a scale rooted on that note (taking into consideration the relationship between Cb and the former scale), it could be more appropriate to use Cb.

And, of course, it all changes when you're not talking about equal temperament.
#12
Quote by food1010
It all has to do with nomenclature and what not. For example, a D in Cb minor is a #2, whereas in B minor it is a b3.

And they do not sound the same. They may be enharmonic, but they function differently.

This. Possibly for smoother modulations as well. Going from a flat key to a flat key (Db to Cb for example) would be much easier than going from Db to B, especially for certain instruments where they must set accidentals with pedals/levers like on a harp.

Db to Cb is just two extra flats where Db to B is 4 flats and 5 sharps.
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#13
Honestly I didn't mean to cause a little swurve off topic. The fact is that the Cb major scale is really a scale that is enharmonic to B major. I suppose that it is that way for diatonic purposes only because why would any composer write a piece in Cb major when in fact Cb doesn't really exist when you could just call it B. Like I said I believe and I might be wrong that it's only done so that every possible note combination can be effectively conveyed, musically and theoretically, but since I don't believe it would ever be used then why would you even bother using it at all since if you play a B major scale you are in fact also playing Cb major. The same goes for double sharps and flats. Why make it more complicated than it has to be unless it just for musical "language" alone. I'm an engineer and my job is to "keep it simple stupid" if you know what I mean so I think going this far is a little pointless but then again I may be totally off base and wrong because I don't consider myself a music theorist and I'm certainly not a song writer.
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#14
Quote by skywalker45
Okay so really I'm not much of a music theorist buy I do understand relationships, etc and scales/chords. I'm confused as to why some piece might be written in the key of Cb major when the notes are the same as the key of B major? I understand that the only change in the two is that you're starting on a different root note when playing the scale but in all reality, to me, you are playing the same notes and just naming the enharmonics differently. Where am I wrong and why would a musician decide on Cb major over B major? Even starting the piece from the beginning with the "key" note would be the same note (i.e. B is enharmonic to Cb).


Well in most cases it WOULD be written in the less complicated key signature. There may be contextual reasons for a part of piece to be in Cb, but in general , pieces in the key of Cb are difficult to find. So don't worry about it.
shred is gaudy music
#15
I don't know why you would want to make a key of Cb but here is why notes like Cb exist.

Here is a C major Scale:

C D E F G A B

now lets flatten the E and flatten the F. (not sure what scale this is, probably some weird mode of a minor scale.

you can have either: C D Eb E G A B

or you can have: C D Eb Fb G A B

its just so it looks better and you don't repeat note letters when you are writing a scale. again, this doesn't make sense to make a key of Cb.
#16
Quote by ozi223
I don't know why you would want to make a key of Cb but here is why notes like Cb exist.

Here is a C major Scale:

C D E F G A B

now lets flatten the E and flatten the F. (not sure what scale this is, probably some weird mode of a minor scale.

you can have either: C D Eb E G A B

or you can have: C D Eb Fb G A B

its just so it looks better and you don't repeat note letters when you are writing a scale. again, this doesn't make sense to make a key of Cb.


Now that's what I was looking for. In this sense, as per your perfect example, you don't want to use the same note letter twice for diatonic and practical purposes. Thanks for the post and for the record, I know of no piece ever written in Cb flat major even though the key is valid. You just have to use common sense to know what's going on. Thanks to everyone for the de-confusion!
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