Musical keys - an interesting list

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Different keys as well as the Major and Minor variants have different emotional weights.
A bit of history and a list from 1806 - from the School of Music, Western Michigan University:

Affective Musical Key Characteristics
The association of musical keys with specific emotional or qualitative characteristic was fairly common prior to the 20th century. It was part of the shared cultural experience of those who made, performed and listened to music. When Mozart or Beethoven or Schubert wrote a piece in a Ab major, for example, they were well aware of this was the 'key of the grave' and knew that many in their audiences were as well. We lose a part of the meaning of their music if we are ignorant of their affective choices. Although these characteristics were, of course, subjective, it was possible to conceive of each key as unique because each key actually sounded distinct within unequal temperaments. When equal temperament became the dominant tuning after 1917, the aural quality of every key became the same, and therefore these affective characteristics are mostly lost to us. (See Piano's Ivory Cage) One of the most influential descriptions of characteristics shared in German-speaking cultures in the late 18th and early 19th century was from from Christian Schubart's Ideen zu einer Aesthetik der Tonkunst (1806):

C Major
Completely Pure. Its character is: innocence, simplicity, naïvety, children's talk.

C Minor
Declaration of love and at the same time the lament of unhappy love. All languishing, longing, sighing of the love-sick soul lies in this key.

D♭ Major
A leering key, degenerating into grief and rapture. It cannot laugh, but it can smile; it cannot howl, but it can at least grimace its crying.--Consequently only unusual characters and feelings can be brought out in this key.

C# Minor
Penitential lamentation, intimate conversation with God, the friend and help-meet of life; sighs of disappointed friendship and love lie in its radius.

D Major
The key of triumph, of Hallejuahs, of war-cries, of victory-rejoicing. Thus, the inviting symphonies, the marches, holiday songs and heaven-rejoicing choruses are set in this key.

D Minor
Melancholy womanliness, the spleen and humours brood.

Fascinating - especially that so much of this was lost in the switch to equal temperament.  One of the things that I love about synthesizers is that it is a trivial matter to change the tuning.  Got a musical idea?  Try it in a different key or different temperment. I used to be really interested in pipe organs (built one in my basement during high school and apprenticed with a builder for a summer) and doing this would be impossible.  Fun time to be alive...

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