Forum - Banjo Ben Clark

Tonic and root

Do tonic and root mean the exact same thing?

I do believe that are one and the same, But I don’t know for sure, for sure.

1 Like

Not quite…

The Tonic is the main note of the Scale so the Tonic note in the scale of G is G…

The Root note is actually the main note of a Chord so the Root note of a G chord is G but the Root note of a C chord is C

Hope this helps


Thank you.

you’re welcome

An yes, it definitely cleared that up for me.

IN MUSIC: The tonic is the first scale degree (the first note of a scale) The triad formed on the tonic note, the tonic chord, is thus the most significant chord in music. Scales are named after their tonics, thus the tonic of the scale of C is the note C.
The Tonic note however, is often confused with the Root, which is the reference note of a chord, rather than that of the scale. Most chords (e.g., ii, IV, V) are not Tonic chords, however each have their own Root-note. For example, if you’re playing in the Key of C, the C-note would be both the Tonic & Root of the C-Chord, but the IV & V Chords (F & G) would have F & G as their Root.

OUTSIDE OF MUSIC: Tonic & Root are mixed together to make a carbonated beverage, such as Root-Beer. Yum, Yum! :wink:


Correct you are Lee. @LG1 The Root-note of a chord, is not necessarily the Tonic note, depending on what key you’re in. I didn’t see your post until I had wrote my longer explanation.

lol… i’m the same pal i don’t read, just type :grinning: