If you’re a musician, you may have come across the term “suspension” in music theory. A suspension is a specific type of non-chord tone that can add interest and tension to your compositions. In this article, we’ll explore what a suspension is and how to use it effectively in your music.

What is a Suspension?

A suspension occurs when a note from the previous chord is held over into the next chord, creating dissonance until it resolves to a chord tone. This means that the suspended note clashes with the new chord until it falls onto a note that belongs to the new harmony. Suspensions are usually found in melodies but can also be used in harmonies.

Types of Suspensions

There are several different types of suspensions that you can use in your music. The most common ones are:

How to Use Suspensions

Now that we’ve covered what suspensions are and their types let’s talk about how you can use them effectively in your compositions.

The most important thing to remember when using suspensions is that they create tension. The longer you hold onto a suspended note, the more tension you will create. So, if you want to create a sense of resolution or release, you should resolve the suspension quickly.

Another important thing to remember is that suspensions work best when they are used sparingly. If you use too many suspensions in your compositions, they will lose their impact and become less effective.

Examples of Suspensions in Music

Let’s look at some examples of suspensions in music:


Suspensions are an important tool for creating tension and interest in your music. By using them sparingly and resolving them quickly, you can add depth and complexity to your compositions. So go ahead and experiment with suspensions – you might just discover a new sound or style that sets your music apart!