[Smt-talk] Sequences

Dmitri Tymoczko dmitri at Princeton.EDU
Tue Mar 3 07:06:07 PST 2009

Thanks for the sequence suggestions, everybody.

Jay Hook also noted two other very clear ascending minor-third  

	1. Grieg, first Norwegian Dance, middle section.
	2. Tchaikovsky, Symphony 4, movement 2, m. 110

Interestingly, in almost all of the sequences mentioned so far, the  
voice-leading is (mostly) parallel and ascending.  This suggests to  
me that composers typically think of the ascending minor-third  
sequence in harmonic rather than contrapuntal terms -- at least, they  
don't seem to be interested in exploiting the potential for  
*descending* voice leading.

A cool example of the "Waldstein" sequence C-G6-Bb-F6 is "Hey  
Joe" (which I know only in the Hendrix version: C-G-D-A-E).  Here the  
descending stepwise voice leading is very clear, both in the melody  
and the upper guitar strings, and perhaps contributes to the mournful  
"sinking" feeling ("I'm going down ...").  The effective-but-unusual  
ascending fifths harmonies were always a bit of a mystery to me, but  
they perhaps make more sense if you think in terms of voice leading.


Dmitri Tymoczko
Associate Professor of Music
310 Woolworth Center
Princeton, NJ 08544-1007
(609) 258-4255 (ph), (609) 258-6793 (fax)

-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <http://lists.societymusictheory.org/pipermail/smt-talk-societymusictheory.org/attachments/20090303/a60ace28/attachment-0004.htm>

More information about the Smt-talk mailing list