Non-Chord Tones

Music Theory Resources

Non-Chord Tones

Non-chord tones are notes which are present in any given vertical moment, but are not classified as part of the chord. Nonetheless, we do have ways to categorize and identify these notes.

type approach resolution character
passing tone step step same direction
neighbor tone step step return home
anticipation step same tone unaccented
suspension same tone step down accented
retardation same tone step up accented
appoggiatura leap step
cop step leap
pedal tone

accented / unaccented diatonic / chromatic ascending / descending upper / lower sub-metrical / metrical / super-metrical Cambiata = Changing Tone = step down, 3rd down, step up Double Neighbor = step, 3rd (opposite direction), step (same direction as 1st step) creat

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