Some of you may have already been familiar with the concept. Others might still be yearning for a better explanation. And some might not have heard of this concept (like myself back in the summer of this previous year).
While this concept is not “new” in any form, I do what to introduce it as a new topic on this website.
Basically, negative harmony is the application of changing notes in a chords for new ones, but still have the same active and passive tendencies and the original chord. Meaning, if the original harmony had a tensional pull to resolve, so will this new chord based on negative harmony.
So, how does one get negative harmony?
First, establish the key that your harmonic progression is in. For this example, we will be in C Major. Now, find the two most-stable pitches: the tonic and dominant.
After that, find the pitch that meets in the middle. This will be the axis of our soon-to-be, point of reflection:
As you notice, there is no defined pitch in the middle of the tonic and dominant. That is not a problem, as it will work to our advantage as we make the point between the mediants the point of reflection:
And now you can see that we reflect the rest of the notes around the point between the mediants. This chart then shows what notes of the original harmony become in order to achieve negative harmony.
So, a F major chord of F – A – C , become D – Bb – G (or a G minor triad).
Play around with it, and experiment in different keys with different points of reflection.
Thank you so much for taking the time to read! Feel free to comment, share, and subscribe for more daily tips below! Till next time.