How Does Music Use Math – A Discussion

Posted by Mike Schumacher

This article will discuss how does music use math. Music uses a lot of math such as 7th Chord, the equal tempered scale, Pythagoras Pythagorean Theorem, mathematical rhythms, and more.

Most music fans don’t know all of this, and only a few people who are interested in music have really studied these things. However, when you go into music, or when you learn how to play an instrument, they will come in handy.

Understanding how music works is really important, even if you are not interested in music theory.

The 7th chord

person writing on white paper

A chord is a note that you can play over a chord (which is a group of notes you can play). For example, a major chord is 7th chords and minor chords are 5th chords.

Equal tempered scale

You know how you count the scale? For example, on a scale like C major, the notes are C major, F, C, D, and E, or C, D, E, and G. However, the system of the note is equal tempered, which is called the scale or scale of the perfect fourth.

The 7th Chord is called a 5th chord and contains two notes that are different, so it is a 7th chord. This is just one example of how we can use the equal tempered scale to count to a 7th chord (also called a perfect 5th).

However, some chords are made up of more than one note (like a 12-step or 13-step progression). An example of this would be the 7th chord using a major 3rd.

Another example would be a major 3rd made up of a fifth and a seventh, which would be a 7th chord.

Equal temperament

composing music

The system of the note is called equal tempered (or equal temperament), which means that you can use different lengths of one or two steps (think 2nd, 3rd, and 4th) to change the sound of the note.

For example, in C major, you could use a 2nd, 3rd, 4th, and 6th to change the note. In fact, all music has this kind of system of using different distances between two notes to change their sounds.

The system of equal temperaments is called equal temperament and is called equal temperament because the distance between the two notes (often called the number of steps) is equal.

Rhythm & metrical patterns

music notation

While not as popular a topic as mathematical patterns and time signatures, the mathematical patterns and mathematical rhythmic patterns that make up music are really important. In fact, in music you often do not play a single note, you play an infinite number of notes.

In fact, a note can be called a chord, like a 5th, if you count the steps of the chord as being a chord.

However, you need to be careful because the number of steps in a chord can change over time. For example, a chord that is 6 steps long is a minor chord (common in songs by Beatles).

However, a chord that is 7 steps long is called a major chord (common in the song Happy Birthday, which is usually a 4th chord). This is because you can also have a 5th chord, which is 5 steps long (a minor chord), or a 6th chord, which is 6 steps long (a major chord).

Some people only know of 7th chords because they use them in rock music. However, any note can be a chord and the notes do change over time.

For example, a song like Beethoven’s 5th symphony contains 32 chords. There are 128 possible 4-note chords. However, the time signature is 8:4, which is why we have played 5 and 4 at the same time.

One really cool thing about music is that it is one of the few things in life that always works perfectly in a given moment.

Therefore, if you see a piece of music playing, and it is not playing in the right key, then you can use the mathematical patterns to figure out what key the piece is in.

One of the easiest ways to do this is to ask yourself two questions:

  1. Is it in a major key or a minor key?
  2. If so, what happens when you change the 4th note from being a major to a minor?

If you get all these questions right, then the piece you are listening to is in the key of C major (or in a major key in this case). If you get all these questions wrong, then it is not in a major key, and you do not know what key the piece is in.


Music is a really fascinating subject and most people don’t give it much thought. In fact, most people just know how to read music and do not even understand it very well.

However, music is very important to society and many people are musicians, not necessarily in the form of having a good knowledge of music, but simply because they enjoy listening to music.

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