The Circle of 4ths and 5ths


Introduction to the Circle of Fifths and Fourths

I remember vividly that I was soaking garri and groundnuts for lunch while I wrote this. Lolzzz!!!

You might want to imitate me *smiles*


Here are the recipes I used:

Garri (Carbohydrates)

Sugar (carbohydrates + vitamin A)

Groundnuts (Vitamins & Mineral salts + oil)

Cowbell milk (varieties but mainly vitamins)



So don’t say that was malnutrition because I got more than even people eating fried rice. lolz


Well, there is something I did with the groundnuts and that’s why I brought this up because I would naturally be shy to expose this hidden meal.


What then did I do?


I made a clock with 12 seeds of groundnuts and called 12 o’clock “KEY C”, 3 o’clock “KEY A”, 6 o’clock “KEY F#”, and 9 o’clock “KEY Eb”.


How silly it was but I clearly imitated this…

The image above is called “Circle of 5ths” when moving in clockwise direction and “Circle of 4ths” when moving counter clockwise.

The image helps you to remember many key things in music but here I will only tell you how it helps you build your interval knowledge of perfect 5ths and 4ths.

From C to G is a fifth while going backward from G to C on this circle is a fourth interval.

Another instance, from F# to Db is a fifth while backward from Db to F# is a fourth.

Trust me it’s the same thing I explained earlier counting two and half tones for 4th interval while counting three and half tones for a 5th interval but this clock or circle will help you to remember easily without counting anything. Just look at it like a multiplication table at the back of your exercise book.

The keys on the outer shell of the circle i.e the green part are all Major keys and it’s on those keys that you create your Major scales.

The keys on the inner part i.e the white part are all minor keys and you build your minor scales with those keys.

As you know in the clock system that we do have 12 visible hours, so also it tallies with music keys since we do have 12 keys too.

So you don’t bother about anything.

Just remember this Circle of 5ths/4ths and your clock will make new meaning to you.

What I did finally was to pick each groundnut as I name it; I will then eat it till I got to 12 o’clock “Key C “(oh you already eaten that?).

Trust me! I ate key C too! lolzz

Music is fun okay?

Let’s move on…

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