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AC #41 Intervalics 101 (1sts-7ths)

Interval Roundup

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Go To 1sts Post Go To 2nds Post Go To 3rds Post Go To 4ths Post Go To 5ths Post Go To 6ths Post Go To 7ths Post

This post is a round-up and review of the intervals we’ve covered in the series up to this point. The things I intended to cover in this series, like interval ID and modification, were done earlier.  For your convenience, I’ve included lots of links to each of the earlier posts in numerical order.

Go To 1sts Post Go To 2nds Post Go To 3rds Post Go To 4ths Post Go To 5ths Post Go To 6ths Post Go To 7ths Post

Cowgirl and Cowboy Rounds 'em Up

Knowing all of the intervals within an octave enhances your musicianship in lots of ways. Your voicing, ear training, transposition, and reading abilities are among the things it enhances.


Construction of Intervals (1sts thru 7ths) from the steps of a Major Scale

Start with #1 then select any other scale step. Extract both numbers and your interval is created!

Major Scale Legend (a.k.a Major Heptachord {since we stop at 7})
1-7 = scale steps
w = whole step (major 2nd)
1/2=  half step (minor 2nd)
1 w 2 w 3 1/2 4 w 5 w 6 w 7

Play a major heptachord in as many keys as you can with this playable onscreen piano keyboard.
Start with any key and follow the schematic’s instructions, step-by-step, (or 1/2 step where needed). 


Construction of Generic Intervals 1sts – 7ths from the 7-Letter Music Alphabet

C D E F G A B

Simply choose any two letters and your generic interval is instantly created. If there’s only 1 letter in between the 2 you’ve chosen,  you have a 3rd. If there are 2 letters in between, you have a 4th etc.
*(All accidentals are excluded In generic intervals. Only letter names and staff position matter.)

When written in standard music notation, intervals from 1sts thru the 7ths look like this in C

Harmonic and melodic intervals on a treble staff

Go To 1sts Post Go To 1sts Post Go To 2nds Post Go To 2nds Post Go To 4ths Post Go To 4ths Post Go To 5ths Post Go To 5ths Post Go To 6ths Post Go To 6ths Post Go To 7ths Post Go To 7ths Post

Keep the following points in mind:

 1. The staff represents a piano’s white keys only. The black keys are notated by accidentals. (Staff steps, unmodified by accidentals, are whole steps, except for the half steps at E to F and B to C) (One staff step = the distance from any staff line to the very next staff space or vice versa, up or down)

 Click here for the onscreen piano keyboard


(The video below shows intervalic 7ths being played up and down an octave in the key of C.)

I recommend practicing rudiments of any type in “musical” contexts because it provides more avenues to make music with the rudiments before starting to apply and use them in songs. 

Reveal this hidden “You Play” version: (to play along with the rhythm section without me)


This link will open an Acrobat/Adobe flash type of applet where you’ll be asked to correctly match ten intervals via a drag-n-drop process. Doing the exercise at least 4 or 5 times will give you an introductory workout on identifying and matching the intervals in C and other keys.

After working with the “open-book” drag-and-drop drill exercises in this section, move on and dive into some deeper waters with the staff and keyboard exercises just below.


Dive into “deeper waters” with these staff and keyboard exercises

The blue staff 2 or 7 opens a page where only numeric values are required in your answer.

A pictorial link to staff drills on 2nds thru 7thsClicking the treble staff or keyboard icon opens a respective interval ID page where numeric and quality values are required. 

Staff Drills Keyboard Drills Staff Drills Staff Drills

Since each exercise utility is never-ending and presents questions indefinitely, you may want to set some type of completion benchmark for yourself such as, answering 25 up to 100 questions correctly or using the timer, located at the top of each utility, to set a time limit, such as 5 to 10 minutes. 

In any case, keep working until you have a success rate that’s between 90% and 100%.

Study well and have fun,

See you next post,

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