theory from Frank Singer.comTonic Chords | print this page | close this window |

Tonic Chords are chords of rest or resolution.
In contemporary harmony, tonic is one of three functional harmony categories.

Functional Harmony
Tonic Sub-Dominant
chords of movement
chords of tension moving to tonic

Tonic chords avoid the use of the fourth scale-degree (fa) in their construction. Tonic chords also usually contain or support the tonic note (do). The exception is the IIIm7 chord, which does not support the first scale-degree (do), and thus is considered a weak tonic chord.

Diatonic Tonic Chords
Primary Relative (Mediant)
Modal Interchange Tonic Chords
must support any existing melody
Major Seventh Minor Seventh Seventh Minor Seventh Flat-Five
bIIImaj7  bVImaj7
Ebmaj7  Abmaj7
Im7  bIIIm7
Cm7  Ebm7
II7 I7
D7 C7
bIII7  bVI7
Eb7  Ab7
#IVm7b5 IIIm7b5
F#m7b5 Em7b5
VIm7b5 Im7b5
Am7b5 Cm7b5

©2003, Frank Singer | Naked Kitty Productions | chelaBOP | Frank
All Rights Reserved