as regards the evan's rootless system:

since i can never remember which inversion is a and which is b, i just call them inversions 1 & 2 here.

you'll note that the minors and dominants both have either the third or the seventh as the bottom note.

the majors have either the third or the sixth in the bottom.

* * * * * * *

as regards "tension" vs "extension" semantics, i understood from the forum discussion that the berklee term "tension" referred only to upper structures (ie 9, 11, 13).

but now mike's saying that that 7ths are "tensions" too.

of course, the b7 in a dominant chord is a tension. that's the primordial definition of tension.

but the nat7 in the maj7 chord is not very "tense" (does not need to resolve), and the b7 in a m7 is the exact opposite of tense - it's one of the most laid back and relaxed notes around.

once again, the term "tension note" (as i understand it) means a note that is driven to resolve. calling notes "tension notes" when they have no need to resolve is confusing to both the learner and the  veteran.

the term "extensions" is not confusing as it does not tack any moral judgements onto the notes.

the other thing that strikes me as odd is that in all my years of playing with "heavy cats" i have never heard this term used until just the other day.

and who am i to disagree with berklee? those guys can delude themselves into believing the rule the world of jazz. but jazz existed long before them and will exist long after.
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