1. Say you see something like this:
You are to find the correct Roman Numeral and figured bass
symbol. Here's what you do: Rearrange the triad until you have something that is stackable
as a "root, third, and fifth." SO, take all the notes, write down their names,
and stack them in thirds. I'll do that right now out loud for you (in my own little
I've got an Eb in the bass, and up in the higher staff I've got another Eb, a G, and C.
So, basically I've got an Eb, G, C chord. Now I stack it in thirds. The G can't be on
bottom because there is no third above it. The Eb has a third above it (the G), but the G
has no third above that. So, that means C is the root because it has a third on top of
that (the Eb), and the Eb has a third above that (the G). Therefore, the chord in root
position is C - Eb - G. In the key of Bb major...hmmm...oh, that's a ii chord (it's a
chord built on the second scale degree, making it a ii chord). Now here are the Rules
for determining the inversion of the chord: if the root of the chord is in the
bass, it's in root position- no figured bass symbol needed. If the third of the chord is
in the bass, then it's in first inversion (6). If the fifth is in the bass, it's in second
inversion (6/4). The third (Eb) is in the bass so it must be in first inversion (6).
You got it? Now do the same thing for these next few and
check them over with a friend or ask me if you've got them right.