Tones and Semi Tones

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Photo by Miguel u00c1. Padriu00f1u00e1n on

Much like we measure geographical distances in Kilometers, we measure musical distances in ‘tones and ‘semi tones. London to Paris is 350 kilometers, C to D is one tone. They are distances between two notes.

Here’s how it all works, here we have a list of all 12 notes in a row:

A     A#     B     C     C#     D     D#     E     F     F#     G     G#     A

NB. B and do not have sharps, this is easy to remember as they are the top two strings on the guitar.


A semi tone is a next-door-neighbour, a tone is next-door-but-one. For example:

A – A# = a semi tone 

C# – D = a semi tone

E – F = a semi tone


A – B = a tone

C# – D# = a tone 

E – F# = a tone


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