1. Most tonal melodies contain a climax tone. A climax tone is the highest stressed pitch of a phrase or other unit. Usually the climax tone is reached only once, but it can appear with reiterations of the pitch and with embellishments.
2. Most phrases contain an ascent to and descent from the climax tone. Although fluctuations in the prevailing direction are a common occurrence, you should consider the overall direction when assessing the ascent and descent.
3. Many melodic phrases contain significantly placed pitches of the tonic triad (scale degrees 1, 3, and 5) that are important in shaping the entire phrase.
4. Scale pitches 3–2–1 often conclude those phrases that end with the tonic pitch.
Melodic Texture Types
- Monophonic Texture: Monophonic texture is the simplest texture type in music, consisting of a single melodic line
- Polyphonic Texture: Polyphonic textures consist of two or more lines moving independently or in imitation with each other.
- Homophonic Texture: The most common texture in Western music is homophonic texture, which is made up of a melody and an accompaniment. The accompaniment provides rhythmic and harmonic support for the melody.
- Homorhythmic Texture: Homorhythmic texture is a texture with similar rhythmic material in all parts. This texture is often referred to as “hymn style,” “chordal homophony,” or “chordal texture,” depending on the presence or absence of melodic material.