Western Chords in the Chromatic Spiral

Here is a new way to view the chromatic spiral. I have added circles of colour corresponding to the notes played to enhance the idea of the colour wheel representing the pitch circle. These large circles overlap and blend. The idea is to associate these blended colours we see with the interval of the two notes we hear.

I am not sure if this works. When we have three notes from opposite sides the three opposing colours blend to white. White is the presence of all colours therefore it should be the sound of not only all notes but all frequencies in between.

However, one experiment remains and that is to use the primary colours in the positions of the tonic, third and fifth. Although, as I type this I cannot imagine this working.

Reflections ~ 3D April 2013

The Reverend Arthur Slade is pleased to present his most satisfying 3D photography to date. It was a morning in April after the river had settled down after flooding. The Reverend’s focus has been on reflections, magnification and capturing movement.

These images are intended to be viewed with red/blue 3D glasses. Click on an image to enlarge them in a photo carousel.

For more of the Reverend’s 3D Photography click here

Imagi[c]nation 4D

Here’s a cartoon the Reverend couldn’t resist introducing to the fourth dimension this morning.

1. Use red/blue 3D glasses. View one eye at a time to see two different pictures.
2. If ‘b4’ is green or blue you need to look through the blue lens to see the Before picture. ‘afte’ will then be red so you look through the red lens to see the After picture.

Ideally 4D pictures will have some 3D effect when viewed with both eyes. Unfortunately this one doesn’t.

583536 3DaAs with most images floating around the web it’s hard to find who is the artist. If you can help leave a comment so we can give credit where credit is due.

Here’s another version. This time ‘b4’ is red. Let us know which you prefer.

583536 3Db

Music in the Great Sphere

The Great Sphere I have been working on is made up of many circles. As part of an investigation into the relationship between colour and the 12 notes of the Western chromatic scale I have found some interesting patterns. One of the patterns is from the relationship between the notes in western music. The major and minor scales have seven notes. The start of each cycle is called an octave. Today I will look at the C major scale. Here is a representation of the scale:

C-Major Scale

C-Major Scale

I have started at C at the top and threaded across the ring jumping thirds each time. From the tonic (C) we go to the major third (E), to the fifth (G), to the seventh (B), to the second (D), to the fourth (F), to the sixth (A) and finally back to the tonic again. One of the reasons I have chosen the C major scale is because it has no sharps or flats, and like a piano layout we can easily spot the groupings. Notice the two pairs of points that are close together, B & C, and E & F. Also where there are dark spaces are the 2 black keys, Db & Eb, and 3 black keys, Gb, Ab and Bb.

For a minor scale all you need to do is turn this asymmetrical seven pointed star 90 degrees:

C-Major Scale with C-Minor Scale underplayed

C-Major Scale with C-Minor Scale underlayed

C-Minor Scale

C-Minor Scale

Getting back to the C major scale, let’s plot the C major chord that has the notes C, E and G:

C-Major chord: C,E and G

C-Major chord: C,E and G

What first struck me when I drew up these lines is something that I had never noticed in my whole life of studying music. Because we are taught to think of the tonic triad as first, third and fifth, that is, two notes up the scale each time,  I had not thought about how many chromatic notes there were between them.  From the tonic (C) to the major third (E) are 4 chromatic notes, from the major third to fifth are 3, and from the fifth to the tonic are 5.

Pythagoras was here

Pythagoras was here

Is this something to do with Pythagoras’ Theorem? No, the numbers do not represent the lengths of the lines but the distance in notes and the angle at the E note is not a right angle. However the numbers 3,4 and 5 are the same and it is this relationship between the notes that we find pleasing. And it is not just the major chord it is also happening in the minor:

Pythagoras minor

Pythagoras minor

It is something that has sparked some interest for me to investigate Pythagoras a little more and in particular the Music of the Spheres.

The final picture today is of the common chords I, IV, V and VI – C major, F major, G major and A minor. The triangle shaped chords are coloured by the colour of the tonic of that chord. The paths that cross are then blended.

The common chords I, IV, V and VI - C major, F major, G major and A minor

The common chords I, IV, V and VI – C major, F major, G major and A minor

So there are quite a few interesting developments so far. The imagery of colours, rings and lines connecting points is inspired from astrology charts and dream catchers. This is the direction of my current study. For the previous post about the Great Sphere click here.

UPDATE: I have just uploaded this video

Around the Whirled in 80 Minutes and Paradoxymorons


This Thursday, Kau Kaka Ora Kardashian is back at Speak Easy, Thames, NZ. This time the band is called the Total Fire Band in honour of the great drought that Pueleaz Mau has been blessed with.

The special guests this time are P K Aotea and Mr Janutka. P K Aotea is an ethnomusicologist from the south who has studied Balinese Gamelan and has been involved in the Wellington and Auckland music scene.

Mr Janutka is originally from Canada [epeue)] but has lived in Japan [ueder] for the last 8 years. He brings with him the didgeridoo [oop!ja6p!p] and the Fujara [ejernt], which is a huge traditional Slovakian flute. He is also a maths and science teacher.

Kau Kaka Ora Kardashian and the Total Fire Band intend to take you “Around the Whirled in 80 Minutes” on Thursday night at Speak Easy and offer a night of “Paradoxymorons”.

Introducing Kau Kaka Ora Kardashian

KauKakaOraSpeakEasy2013-02-28At Speak Easy, Thames on Thursday night Kau Kaka Ora Kardashian and the Supermild band will take you around the world in 80 minutes with traditional instruments and representatives from each continent and a number of cultures.

We will be celebrating the full moon of the 26th. Afterwards you are invited to join us as we time travel through the 29th, 30th and 31st into the 1st of March.