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Seven Harmonies Examples

© 2006 Music Awareness

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The 3 harmony

Roman numeral code: iii
Scale notes: 3, 5, 7
Mode: minor

Attributes: "far away", mysterious

3's essence is much different from that of 6 or 2. It seems remote and elusive. These qualities and its great harmonic 'distance' from 1 accounts for its rarity.

The 3 chord is plaintive, with a deep sense of longing. 3 is the most subtle of the harmonies, yet it can evoke sadness or mystery much better than 6 or 2.

The presence of scale note 7 is mainly what gives 3 its unique qualities. Because of its distance from 1 harmonically, 3 often returns to 1 in three steps: to 4 or 2, then to 5, then 1.