#1
Hey guys,

So in our diatonic scale, we have two leading tones present. In major, the 7th interval pulls strongly toward the tonic. The perfect 4th also pulls toward the major 3rd. In our natural minor, there is a leading tone from the major second to the minor third and the minor sixth to the perfect fifth. The leading tones and the note they resolve to are a minor second apart. My question is: what determines where these leading tones lead? Do they always lead toward the tonal center? I notice in both major and natural minor, both leading tones lead into a member of the tonic triad.
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#2
Just because I'm a grammar/vocab freak: A leading tone is only a major 7th(1 step below the tonic)
The others you named are tendency tones. This just means that (As you said) certain notes in a scale tend to go towards others. And typically, all notes lead towards the tonal center, because quite simply it sounds the best. You pretty much had it figured out noticing that they all go towards the root triad.
So to answer your question in short, all notes in a scale tend to flow towards the root, especially the ones you mentioned. (sometimes they also tend to go towards the fifth, but I won't bring that up. Oh wait...)
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#3
Quote by RANDUMB!
Just because I'm a grammar/vocab freak: A leading tone is only a major 7th(1 step below the tonic) The others you named are tendency tones.


Thanks. I'm pretty knowledgeable, but self-taught, so sometimes I don't have the right names for things--I used to call all predominants subdominants...

Quote by RANDUMB!

So to answer your question in short, all notes in a scale tend to flow towards the root, especially the ones you mentioned. (sometimes they also tend to go towards the fifth, but I won't bring that up. Oh wait...)


Just so I'm 100% clear on this...you say they generally flow towards the root: does the P4 -> M3 tendency tone move the direction it does because it's moving closer to the 1, or because it falls into the tonic triad?
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#4
Well, the 2 and 6 of minor aren't really tendency tones in the sense of straight ahead dominant-tonic resolution. In minor (by the way, when you're talking tendency tones, you're talking harmony and thus you're talking keys. In which case, it's not the natural minor, but the minor key which is comprised of natural, harmonic and melodic minor harmonies) the tendency tones are still 7 (the #7 from harmonic minor) and 4 (which leads down to the 3).

The reason the tones lead the way they do is that they sound resolved when they lead where they do. The 7-8 rising half step sounds very resolved, as does the falling 4-3 (whether to the minor or major third). What really makes the 7-8 and 4-3 work in conjunction is the idea of a diminished 5th or augmented 4th resolving to a third or sixth respectively. So, 4-7 (aug4) to 3-8(sixth), or 7-4(dim5) to 1-3(third).
#5
Quote by jazz_rock_feel
[...] the tendency tones are still 7 (the #7 from harmonic minor) and 4 (which leads down to the 3).


Hmm...I always thought the bVI -> v was a big reason why melodic minor traditional used the minor sixth and seventh intervals upon descent: you get a nice descending line from the tonic to the dominant.

Quote by jazz_rock_feel

The reason the tones lead the way they do is that they sound resolved when they lead where they do. The 7-8 rising half step sounds very resolved, as does the falling 4-3 (whether to the minor or major third). What really makes the 7-8 and 4-3 work in conjunction is the idea of a diminished 5th or augmented 4th resolving to a third or sixth respectively. So, 4-7 (aug4) to 3-8(sixth), or 7-4(dim5) to 1-3(third).


I get what you're saying though. Months ago, I read about the +6 chord and why it functioned differently from a 7 (drops a half step instead of a P5). Thinking about that sort of thing again today is what prompted this question in the first place.
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