Tone and Tenor… What Does It Mean?


‘Tone and tenor’ relates to the way your audience perceives the object being described. Usually, but not always, textual communication is the focus. Alternatively, it might refer to an event.

Although both words have musical meanings. The term “tone and tenor” are sometimes used together as a phrase. In this non-musical sense, tone and tenor mean the overall feeling of the thing being described. Both words are characteristics in this instance, and refer to the sum features of what is being described. They describe the tonality and emotions felt when watching, reading or listening to something.


“The general tone and tenor of the doctor’s address was dreary and unfortunate, everyone wilted upon hearing it”

“The tone and tenor of the news bulletin was quick and straight to the point”

“The club president gave a speech. His tone and tenor was bubbly and bright, everyone enjoyed ity”

Take Away

The phrase has nothing to do with anything musical. But more to do with the feeling of a speech, article, book, adress (e.t.c) and how it comes across. This is mainly something said about written things, but can be used in a variety of situations:

Although both:

Tone – A specific characterization of a sound

Tenor – A categorization of singer, or a Musical Cleff between Treble and Bass

sometimes mean completely different things. So there it is this is the end of the article. Now you will understand when someone uses the phrase, and if you stuck around to the end you might’ve refreshed your defintions of the individual words as well! In the end, I will see you later, thank you for reading

Hopefully this was helpful and you figured out what you needed to know, in the meantime check out our homepage to learn anything else you want about music!

Mark D.

Mark D.

Hi, I'm Mark. I've been playing instruments since I was just a little kid. I've played cello and piano for a few years, and recently picked up guitar. I've produced bad music. I also run this blog where I share interesting things I've learned. I hope you Enjoy my posts!

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