Difference between Modal and Tonal

Please give your honest/balanced opinion on these 2 songs, Thanks

Song 1

'Sumer Is Icumen In' (English? John of Fornsete? 1310?)



In your opinion:

  1. Is this song in the Modus Lascivus?

  2. Do you hear this as the Ionian Mode?

  3. Is it based around the notes D E F# G / A B C# D?

  4. Is D the Tonic?

  5. Is D the Modal Centre?

  6. Is D the Tonal Centre?

  7. Is this piece in D Major?


A simple Yes/No answer and/or explanation can help me out a lot.

For example: Song 1: 1. Yes 2. Yes 3. Yes 4. Yes 5.Yes 6. No 7. No


Song 2 'En el Primer Calabozo' by Antonio Rachal



In your opinion:

  1. Is this song a Flamenco Cante?

  2. Do you hear this as the Ionian Mode?

  3. Is it based around the notes F G A Bb / C D E F?

  4. Is F the Tonic?

  5. Is F the Modal Centre?

  6. Is F the Tonal Centre?

  7. Is this piece in F Major?

  8. Are most of the intervals 2nds and some 3rds?

  9. Is this a good example of ''bending'' melisma ornamentations, similar to a vocal warm-up before the first verse starts?


Thank you very much for your help in advance,


Michael Bonett



Introducing Music by Otto Karolyi Pages: 58, 64



Flamenco Music Theory Lola Fernandez Pages: 66, 67


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  • Hi Michael - there are several problems with your poll: first, those of us who don't subscribe to Spotify (that would include me!) can't listen to the examples. Second, many (possibly most) of us here lack the musical education to answer what appear to be highly technical questions. (The appropriate answers would, I think, be matters of fact, not opinion.) And finally, it is not clear how this relates to the guitar, which is the one common interest of people here. You might want to rethink how (and to whom) you pose your questions, if you want meaningful responses. I hope you find these observations helpful!

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