Contacting DiminishedFifth
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Red Dragon (1)
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Sunday, August 23, 2009

Circle of Fifths

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Comments: 6
The Co5's is the arrangement of the respective keys in order of increasing sharps. It goes (F)CGDAEBF# (I learned it with an F at the beginning; you'll find out why). C Major has no sharps, so let's start there (I included F Major, cause that's how I wrote it in this paragraph. Don't pay much attention to it yet.. you'll know why in a second... hopefully).

[[(F Major) = 1 Flat]]
C Major = 0 sharps
G Major = 1 sharp
D Major = 2 sharps
A Major = 3 sharps
E Major = 4
B Major = 5
F# Major = 6
C# Major = 7

The 'F' before my 'C' in the Co5's I gave you above the list represents the first Flat key (read below). It's also the first note to get sharped in a key signature (that's why it's at the beginning). Whenever you write a key signature in a Major key (aside from C Major) you will always start with a sharped F. Next would be a sharped C. Then G. Then D. So-on-so-forth.

To do a sharp key you start on the F, and then move down a 4th, up a 5th, down a 4th, up a 5th until you reach B Major, in which case you'll go down another 4th (rather than up a 5th) to sharp the A. You do this just because it looks nicer than having a sharp on a ledger line. The pattern continues after that.

Now if you do it backwards starting at F you get: (C)FBEADGC. This is in increasing flats. This is more of a Circle of 4th's, but it's relevant, so i'll explain it. If you start at C Major, you get no flats, then move up a 4th and you get F Major; 1 Flat. Up another 4th; 2 flats. It'll come out like this:

C Major = 0 Flats
F Major = 1 Flat
Bb Major = 2 Flats
Eb Major = 3 Flats
Ab Major = 4 Flats
Db Major = 5
Gb Major = 6
Cb Major =7

Now with the flat keys you will always first flat the B. So F Major now has a Bb. Then for Bb Major, you flat the E as well as the B. This pattern continues all the way until you reach Cb Major, which is 7 Flats.

Now when you write a Flat key signature, you start at the B, then move up a 4th, down a 5th, up a 4th, down a 5th, and that repeats until you get to Cb.

A nice acronym to remember the Co5's is:


And for the Flat keys, I just remember F Bead GC. You'll get that eventually. Or there's also BEAD GCF (Greatest Common Factor)
12:49 am - 6 comments - 6 Kudos - Report!
Red Dragon wrote on Aug 28th, 2009 4:36am

i think this was somewhat helpful because i already know most of this ...its like a good refresher ...but i know if i didnt know any of this ...this would be a really good and to the point explination


Sean0913 wrote on Jan 27th, 2010 2:26am

Great job, much respect on a very clean explanation of the concept. Keep up the great work!


AeolianWolf wrote on May 27th, 2010 2:46am

fat chicks get drunk at every bar.


Elden G20 wrote on May 27th, 2010 8:01am

I like the acronym

This way, to find the flats, it becomes


This way you just need to remember one acronym, and makes sense when you reverse it.


kian89 wrote on May 28th, 2010 12:46pm

fat chicks get drunk at every bar. .. yeah ...lol
though i donno anything about CO5s
its pretty boring


kian89 wrote on May 28th, 2010 12:47pm

i donno what the hell a kudo is .. i give you one anyway...haha


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