DOUBLE SHARPS AND FLATS

Why are there double sharps and flats in music? Double sharps and flats are used in advanced music. The double sharp looks like an X and the double flat are two flat signs bb. Why can’t you just call it by the note you are playing. For instance, “F double sharp,” why not call it G instead of “F double sharp?”

It has to do with the diatonic nature of the music that is in a specific key. This means that you use a letter name once in a scale. If you look at the key of G# minor, it has five sharps with the eight notes. They are G# A# B C# D# E F# G# and there are no letter names used twice. This applies to all minor and major scales. That is a music theory rule! That is why you would never call the A# a Bb or the D# an Eb.

If you have a double F# written in music notation, on the piano or keyboard the double F# is actually G, just like Gbb would be the F key on the piano. You must use double sharps or flats for the chord notes to be correct according to the key signature and the specific chords you are playing.

Let’s look at the B major chord which has B D# F# (1-3-5). If you made the B major chord augmented, which means you raise the last note in the chord a half step B D# F##, it would not be B D# G, which means the chord would no longer be 1-3-5, it would be 1-3-6. You use the double sharps and flats to keep the notes in the chord correct according to what key signature you are in and the specific chords you are playing in that key signature.

When you have a C7 chord C E G Bb and you now form it into a Cdim7 the notes are C Eb Gb Bbb. The B is a double flat instead of calling it A because of the original notes being 1-3-5-7. If you changed the Bbb to A, it would be 1-3-5-6 which is not a 7th.

Clear as mud…lol!

JOKE FOR THE DAY:

I played all the right notes, but not necessarily in the right order!”

Steven Wright

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