Tonality is a musical system in which hierarchical pitch relationships are based around a tonic triad, and on hierarchical relationships between that central triad and the seven others in a key. Tonality was the predominant musical system in the European tradition of classical music from the late 1500s until early in the 20th century, and in modern times has been globalized as the central vehicle for popular music. The term tonalité originated with Alexandre-Étienne Choron (1810) and was borrowed by François-Joseph Fétis in 1840 (Reti 1958,; Simms 1975, 119; Judd 1998a, 5; Heyer 2001; Brown 2005, xiii).
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