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Thread: Solfegio syllable.....

  1. #1
    Registered User Malcolm's Avatar
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    Solfegio syllable.....

    Would appreciate some clarification. In a study I'm doing the solfegio syllable is shown as:
    do, re, mi, fa, sol, la, ti do and at other times the syllable is shown as:

    re, ra or ri
    mi, or me
    fa or fi
    sol, say or si
    la, le or lay
    ti or te

    I have yet to figure out when to use - in re's case - re or ra or ri I suppose it has to do with sharps flats or major/minor, little help would be appreciated.

    Thanks,

  2. #2
    Jazzman Poparad's Avatar
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    The normal degrees of the major scale are as such:

    1 - Do
    2 - Re
    3 - Mi
    4 - Fa
    5 - Sol
    6 - La
    7 - Ti

    When those degrees are lowered by one half step (except for the 1st and 4th, as that would just be the 7th and 3rd, respectively), you use these syllables:

    b2 - Ra
    b3 - Me
    b5 - Se
    b6 - Le
    b7 - Te


    For raised degrees (again, except for 3 and 7), use these:

    #2 - Ri
    #4 - Fi
    #5 - Si
    #6 - Li (not really used)

  3. #3
    Registered User ernzzz's Avatar
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    very interesting... in spain we always say Si for the B.. i have studied many years on a modern music conservatory here, and never heared of the rest!

  4. #4
    Registered User Malcolm's Avatar
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    Thanks, it all makes since now.

  5. #5
    Jazzman Poparad's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ernzzz
    very interesting... in spain we always say Si for the B.. i have studied many years on a modern music conservatory here, and never heared of the rest!
    There is a little variation from country to country. 'Do' was originally 'Ut' and remained so in many countries for a long time. Solfege originally came from a chant written by a monk named Guido who used it to train the other monks to hear the different scale degrees better. Each line of the text starts one step higher in the scale:

    "Ut queant laxis
    Resonare fibris
    Mira gestorum
    Famuli tuorum,
    Solve polluti
    Labii reatum,
    Sancte Ioannes."


    Although the last line starts with "Sancte," it was never adopted as a solfege syllable for the 7th scale degree. Due to this, there is a small variety of syllables that were initially used for it, but most people have settled on "Ti."

  6. #6
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    Great posts you guys. I've been trying to do solfiege exercises with my guitar ever day. Just playing them and singing them in unison. I think it's really doing wonders for my ears.

  7. #7
    Registered User Shredmaniac's Avatar
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    I had never heard of other syllables than Do (or Ut) Re Mi Fa Sol La Si in my many years of conservatory (in France). Thanks for the info ! We didn't use other syllables for lowered / raised tones, we sang "Do Sharp" or "Mi Flat". This wasn't always practical.

    As for the "ti" (si), I watched John Woo's "Hard-Boiled" many years ago, and actor Chow Yun-Fat uses it to sketch out the melody to a tune (The guy's a cop AND a jazz clarinet player !! What a movie !!), thus proving that two hours of gunfights can teach you about solfege. Oh well.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by ernzzz
    very interesting... in spain we always say Si for the B.. i have studied many years on a modern music conservatory here, and never heared of the rest!
    Same thing happens here in Ecuador... I guess that's just the way it is in Spanish. And it's a lot less confusing...

  9. #9
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    Got this from from a book about ear training that helps with the pronounciation and lettering that is very useful when practicing your solfege. The ones with the slash are pronounced depending on if itīs a sharp or a flat



    OCTAVE - DO - (DOH)

    MAJORSEVENTH - TI or SI - (TEE or SEE)

    MINOR SEVENTH - LI / TE - (LEE or TAY)

    MAJOR SIXTH - LA - (LAH)

    MINOR SIXTH - SI / LE - (SEE / LAY)

    FIFTH - SO or SOL - (SOH or Sol)

    TRITONE - FI / SE - (FEE / SAY)

    FOURTH - (FA - FAH)

    MAJOR THIRD - (MI - MEE)

    MINOR THIRD - RI / ME - (REE / MAY)

    MAJOR SECOND - RE - (RAY)

    MINOR SECOND - DI / RAH - (DEE / RAH)

    PRIME - DO - (DOH)
    Last edited by tyte; 08-02-2007 at 11:21 PM.

  10. #10
    bitter old fool Jed's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tyte
    MINOR SEVENTH - LI / TI - (LEE or TAY)
    I think you'll find that the augmented 6th uses LI (LEE) while the minor 7th uses TE (TAY)

    (as per Poparad's post below)

  11. #11
    bitter old fool Jed's Avatar
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    In the key of K:

    C = Do, C# = Di, Db = Ra
    D = Re, D# = Ri, Eb = Me
    E = Mi
    F = Fa, F# = Fi, Gb = Se
    G = So (sol), G# = Si, Ab = Le
    A = La, A# = Li, Bb = Te
    B = Ti
    C = Do

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jed
    I think you'll find that the augmented 6th uses LI (LEE) while the minor 7th uses TE (TAY)

    (as per Poparad's post below)
    True that. Typpo error. Let me edit that.

  13. #13
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    The dumbing down of musical intelligence in America

    I don't know if it is true but I read somewhere that in Italy they use "si" in place of "ti" as the diatonic 7th degree or leading tone. They use all the other syllables we do literally. In America we sometimes use the alphabets. The article I read said that the Italians don't use the alphabets. They use Guido's original syllables. You can make up your own syllables or sounds. Each method has some advantages and disadvantages. I like to use a neutral syllable sometimes. "Ta" has a nice attack for each sound. "Loo" and "lee" which have a softer attack are recommended for children in a sight singing method book for teaching Protestant kids how to sing melodies and harmonies at an early age. All of this is really good ear training. The younger you start training your ear , the better. The book is old. It appears that people were better educated in music performance for the church years ago. I think we don't make our own music enough anymore as a society. The rich fat cats in the recording industry love the dumbing down of America. Maybe that's why so much of this bad music is making so much money.
    Last edited by Flextones; 11-30-2007 at 11:58 PM. Reason: I need to put some quotes in there.

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