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Music Theory for Computer Musicians by Michael Hewitt

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Spacing

Another important facet of chordal harmony is spacing. Spacing concerns the way the notes of the chord are spread within a balanced sonority. There are two kinds of spacing: closed and open. Closed spacing is when the notes of a chord are crowded together as closely as possible (see Figure 13.7).

Figure 13.7. A minor triad in closed position.

Open spacing is where the chord is given a wider spread over the register. Each single chord can be spaced in a variety of ways, closed and open. Each type of spacing will contribute to the overall effect of that sonority. Figure 13.8 shows some examples of open spacing of an A minor triad.

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