How to Harmonize



Easy Steps

 
Learn to Harmonize

If you want to learn how to harmonize, you came to the right place. Below are easy steps that will help you understand the process as well as have a general idea about the topic. But before starting with the steps, you need to know the basic concepts about harmonize. In music, harmony is the use of simultaneous pitches (tones, notes), or chords. The study of harmony involves chords and their construction and chord progressions and the principles of connection that govern them. Harmony is often said to refer to the "vertical" aspect of music, as distinguished from melodic line, or the "horizontal" aspect. Counterpoint, which refers to the interweaving of melodic lines, and polyphony, which refers to the relationship of separate independent voices, are thus sometimes distinguished from harmony.

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Easy Steps to Harmonize

Below are simple steps to learn how to harmonize. Go step by step, and check your progress.

  1. "Form a chord with the melody". When 3 or more notes are played at once in tones, or voices or sung at once, we call it a chord. These notes are often referred to as triads with 3 tones (1,3,5 intervals) the 1,3,5 chords are the most basic chords for harmonizing.
  2. You need to try the most basic chords which are "major chords" (1-3-5) like "C-E-G." The 1 represents the 'root' note, then skip one up to note 3 that represents the 3rd (the note 2 places up from the first one). Then skip from the 3rd to place 5 which represents the 5th (or the note 4 places up from the root and 2 places up from the 3rd). You can also have 1-3-5-7 by adding the 7th and/or the 1st (root) note up or down the octave.
  3. The good way to practice singing harmony is by harmony with a keyboard or a piano. When you play a piano, a good note to harmonize is: Assuming a C major scale, strike the C note and, then strike 2 together with your harmonizing note (two) which is found by skipping the next note. The C would be the root note in the key of C major, but it would be the lowest C note. Then singing the next one in the same direction, from the original note. But that's rather crude.
  4. Keep sing along with a recorded song the way you're supposed to. Slower songs such as hymns are easier.
  5. Now you need to try to sing a little bit higher or lower in pitch and have it sound good.
  6. Realize this might sound awful when you first try it. Just try to sing time to time a little higher or lower than the original and have it sound good. You are not harmonizing, if it sounds bad. If it sounds good, then you probably are.
  7. Harmonizing to a great degree is intuitive. You will know the right/wrong notes when you are learning what sounds right and what sounds wrong. Just loosen up and try to sing at the slightly higher (or lower) pitch... If you play an instrument like a piano or guitar you will discover the harmony by first playing the note you are singing then move that note up to the 3rd on the scale (in the key) of the song you are playing like C (C-E-G) or G (G-B-D); notice they skip a letter, but of course sharps and/or flats are found in many keys which is usually the black keys on a piano type of keyboard.
  8. Tips
    Record yourself singing along with the melody on a tape recorder and play it back to gauge your progress and determine where you need to improve your skill.
  9. Warning
    Beware of straining your voice; if you throat feels sore or uncomfortable, discontinue singing for the day. Stressing your voice could result in damaged vocal cords.

Practice makes perfect, don't hesistate to practice to achieve the desired goal. Try to combine the steps above with the video below in order to obtain the most information about how to harmonize.

How to Harmonize Video

Below is also a video to help you learn how to Harmonize.



We hope the above steps and video about how to harmonize have helped you in your quest to learn how to harmonize. If you like this page you might also want to go to our main page and learn more about our Book of the Worlds.