E♭ (musical note)

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E (E-flat) or mi bémol is the fourth semitone of the solfege.

It lies a diatonic semitone above D and a chromatic semitone below E, thus being enharmonic to D (D-sharp) or Re Dièse. However, in some temperaments, D-sharp is not the same as E-flat. E-flat is a perfect fifth below B, whereas D-sharp is a major third above B.

When calculated in equal temperament with a reference of A above middle C as 440 Hz, the frequency of the E above middle C (or E4) is approximately 311.127 Hz. See pitch (music) for a discussion of historical variations in frequency.

Well-known compositions in E flat major[edit]

The prelude to Richard Wagner's Das Rheingold is a famous piece of drone music that begin with a low E flat and builds to more and more elaborate figurations of the chord of E flat major. It is used in this opera to portray the motion of the river Rhine.[1]

Beethoven's Piano Concerto No. 5 (also known as The Emperor) is another well-known piece set in the key of E flat major.

Designation by octave[edit]

Scientific designation Helmholtz designation Bilinear music notation Octave name Frequency (Hz)
E-1 E͵͵͵ or ͵͵͵E or EEEE (-uE) Subsubcontra 9.723
E0 E͵͵ or ͵͵E or EEE (-vE) Subcontra 19.445
E1 E͵ or ͵E or EE (-wE) Contra 38.891
E2 E (-xE) Great 77.782
E3 e (-yE) Small 155.563
E4 e (zE) One-lined 311.127
E5 e′′ (yE) Two-lined 622.254
E6 e′′′ (xE) Three-lined 1244.508
E7 e′′′′ (wE) Four-lined 2489.016
E8 e′′′′′ (vE) Five-lined 4978.032
E9 e′′′′′′ (uE) Six-lined 9956.063
E10 e′′′′′′′ (tE) Seven-lined 19912.127

Common scales beginning on E[edit]

  • E Major: E F G A B C D E
  • E Natural Minor: E F G A B C D E
  • E Harmonic Minor: E F G A B C D E
  • E Melodic Minor Ascending: E F G A B C D E
  • E Melodic Minor Descending: E D C B A G F E
  • E Dorian: E F G A B C D E

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Erickson, Robert, Sound Structure in Music, p. 94. University of California Press, 1975 ISBN 0-520-02376-5