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Re: Minor third

This is from a friend of mine who is a music educator as well as a fine
musician. I thought his reply was very illuminating.

Date: Fri, 28 Jan 2005 19:58:56 -0800
To: Brian Gygi <bgygi@xxxxxxxxx>
From: Bill Polits <billpolits@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Subject: Re: Fwd: Re: Minor third


Since we discussed the Music Together curriculum today, the songs that
begin and end every class have as their opening interval the minor third.
The "Hello Song" has an ascending, the "Goodbye song" has descending.

In my MT teacher training it was presented that scientific data shows
infants begin to vocalize in response to music on the 5th of  any given
scale more often than other notes. My angle would be to suggest that it's
not just the interval of a minor third that's important but that it's the
fact that the m3 is the closest consonant interval down from the 5th
that's important (the lower note of "na na na na na, na" never sounds like
the 1st note of the scale, always the major 3rd). The point is, the
primacy of the m3 comes not from that particular ratio but more from its
relation to the scale.

To the 2 reasons given by the writer at the bottom I would add that yard
calls need to be heard and hence must use the vocal apparatus efficiently.
Wide jumps aren't easy to get the power curve of the voice to project. Us
commoners have a very narrow power band.