The theremin is an instrument invented by Léon Theremin (Lev Sergeyevich Termen in Russian) in 1919. It has two metal antennae, and you play it not by touching it, but by moving your hands in the air between the antennae to control both the pitch and volume of the sound produced. We’ve written about the instrument in a past article, so head here to learn a bit more if you’re interested.
The B♭, my friend, is what we call a tension. A tension is not a chord tone (root, 3rd, 5th, or 7th), but it can be used to add color to chord structures.
+ Learn a new musical skill in 10 minutes. Explore Soundfly’s wide array of free online courses and gain a musical edge during your lunch break. Or sign up for the Soundfly Weekly newsletter, and learn something new every Tuesday!
Ludwig van Beethoven’s “Für Elise” provides us with the first example of a minor second, and it can be found in the first “seconds” of the piece — in other words, the first two notes are a descending minor second apart.