The way individual pitches interact when grouped to bring structure to music.

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7
votes
2answers
633 views

A triad is 3 notes, but on guitar, we strum more than 3 strings?

In music theory, I see that a triad is a chord built with three notes. Take Emaj in example; it is built with E,G#,B. But why when we strum all the six strings of the guitar does the harmony still ...
11
votes
3answers
934 views

Dissonant notes extremely panned - what is that I hear?

I was studying the musical theory and an idea came to me - what happens if I play dissonant chords at the same time, but one of them being panned to the extreme left and the other one - to the extreme ...
-3
votes
2answers
60 views

What is the use of 5ths in romantic music?

I sang bass for 3 years in choir, yet I hear the term '5ths' being used for certain types of music, especially romantic ballads. Claude Debussy's Claire de Lune is a favorite of mine, and I hear that ...
1
vote
2answers
46 views

What can a dominant seventh over a submediant chord resolve to?

In this song from Family Guy, a barbershop quartet is singing a song in C major, and they end a phrase on a V7/vi (E7) chord, and proceed to drag that chord out for about one minute (until 1:52), at ...
4
votes
3answers
69 views

Transitive property of harmony feeling

Let a, b, c denote three different musical lines. My question is, would it be true to claim that, If a and b sounds good together and if b and c sounds good together, then a and c sounds good ...
10
votes
3answers
304 views

Why does Fux use F# in his counterpoint to a firmus written in G mixolydian

In the given image below, Fux writes a counterpoint to a cantus firmus given to him as part of his studies by his fictitious teacher Aloysious. A rule that is often emphasised is that one should ...
14
votes
5answers
4k views

Understanding minor key harmony

A comment discussion under this question from me, clued me in to the fact that I don't really understand how minor keys work very well. So here is what I think I know The natural minor comes from the ...
11
votes
1answer
386 views

What is the four tonic system?

What is the four tonic system? What's the theory behind it? How is it used in improvisation, harmonization, reharmonization?
0
votes
2answers
38 views

Can 2 single notes be considered as cadence?

I was studying a tutorial about phrases and cadences. I faced following image : Here [I] means first chord of F Major scale so it's F Major Chord. So is the next note (A) also considered as [I] or ...
0
votes
1answer
70 views

What is the exact usage of harmony?

I have completely studied music theory (even diatonic chords) and have just started harmony but I don't know what I am studying in harmony!!! I have faced 2 specific questions and 2 general question :...
2
votes
1answer
39 views

How do I use quartal chords on guitar on common chord progressions?

I play rhythm guitar and solo in a four piece band that improvises on traditional folk music. I really like the sound of quartal harmony (building chords on fourths instead of thirds) and I've been ...
1
vote
2answers
95 views

How many (parallel) harmonies can we have in a song without one harmony being an octave apart from another?

I usually can only come up with two separate harmonies for a song, the ones I came up with after that are usually an octave higher or lower than those two harmonies.
8
votes
2answers
3k views

In jazz, what is an upper structure triad?

What is upper structure? How are upper structure triads constructed? How are they used?
0
votes
1answer
68 views

Which books are being taught in famous universities about contemporary harmony [closed]

What are the best books that are being taught about contemporary harmony in universities around the world? Does anyone know about a book that is so famous that is being taught in almost all famous ...
5
votes
6answers
313 views

Tonal harmony: 18th century counterpoint vs. Accessible contemporary harmony and composition

I have a fair amount of knowledge when it comes to "rules" regarding music of the bygone days of the traditional prelude & fugue, the motet, and four voice harmony of the Baroque era. Specifically,...
6
votes
1answer
173 views

Theory of country music vocal harmonies

This is a question that I have overcome simply by harmonising by ear, however I've recently joined this forum and in the time I have been here, I've been amazed by the clear knowledge and talent of ...
6
votes
3answers
662 views

Which notes are bass line, versus melody line, in a rock song?

I'm actually learning piano, and in piano i can play the bass with my left hand and the melody with my right hand. But it doesn't seem to be the case with guitars and i assume that one guitar should ...
4
votes
3answers
188 views

Rule of the octave for melody

In thorough bass (where the bass line is written first) there are simple "rules" for ascending and descending scales with different inversions and other rules in "partimenti". They are all based on ...
3
votes
3answers
84 views

Learning to free-form harmonise when singing

Recently I've started trying to harmonise when singing in church, as the only place I regularly sing with a large group of people. I'm finding it really hard and I wondered if anyone can suggest how ...
2
votes
2answers
77 views

In a song, what helps people distinguish between the main melody and the harmony?

It seems like people, regardless of their knowledge or "sense" of harmony, can naturally tell which one is the main melody and which is the harmony in a song--even if the melody is never played alone (...
-1
votes
1answer
79 views

Piano…JS Bach fan…he blows me away [closed]

What are all the available chords for every bass note? I am looking for a way in to use partimenti to supply chords quickly to a given bass line, without figured bass
12
votes
4answers
5k views

F# major vs Gb major?

I was looking at Dvorak's Humoresque (op 101 n 7) : it's mostly in Gb major, in the middle it changes to F# minor. This would have looked more natural for me if F# major instead of Gb major were used....
1
vote
2answers
69 views

Counter-example of counterpoint technique?

I'm trying to fully understand the concept that "Counterpoint" entails... but I can't seem to think any situation in which a counterpoint is not present on a song/piece/whatever. If counterpoint is ...
8
votes
7answers
2k views

Theory behind the change from a major chord to the same in minor

In many songs I hear the change from a major chord to the same, but minor. For example F A Bb Bbm. It sounds really nice to me and I'm wondering if there is a theory behind it. Is there a genre ...
0
votes
1answer
80 views

Key/Chord recognition using a computer

I'm a physics student with a great interest in music. I'm researching (as a kind of hobby) in topics which include math applied to music, acoustics, etc. In the last days I've realized that having a ...
0
votes
1answer
55 views

Can 2 Trumpet players be in a brass band?

I want to create a brass band with my friends at school. My friend is less experienced than me in playing the trumpet so I am the one who is most likely to do it. But my friend really wants to be part ...
18
votes
6answers
4k views

Prokofiev's style

I have a predilection for music from the first half of the 20th century. I can't pinpoint the exact reason why, I suspect it is from absorbing so much music from movies, tv series and computer games ...
6
votes
1answer
631 views

What is the name of the (I think) Renaissance harmonic device used in choral music that sounds slightly odd today?

I remember in college hearing about people playing minor 'pranks' using this device, however I've forgotten the name and I can't remember the exact details. It has to do with notes (possibly sevenths?...
7
votes
4answers
204 views

Proper understanding of dissonance

I have recently had a big eye opener with one of my guitar pieces in how it uses dissonance in a musical way to make interesting music. I have always thought that for music to be dissonant is for it ...
2
votes
2answers
59 views

How to begin putting chords on variable melody?

One of the things that is mysterious for me is how to put chords on a melody which is so variable. I mean that just a chord is not enough to cover the whole bar. For example it contains (C key) : ...
1
vote
3answers
134 views

Does a dominant seventh chord always have to function as a secondary dominant/cadence?

Does a dominant seventh chord always have to function as a secondary dominant/cadence? In "I Wanna Hold Your Hand" they play a B7-C and a B7-G instead of resolving to an E. Does this just work as a ...
1
vote
3answers
76 views

Secondary dominant of a minor chord?

I understood how to get the secondary dominant of a major chord, but I don't understand how to get the secondary dominant of a minor chord, mainly because I don't know which minor mode (natural, ...
2
votes
4answers
4k views

In traditional (tonal) harmony, how is the word “sonority” used?

In traditional harmony, I have heard the word "sonority" used sometimes freely in a way to describe harmonic structures or harmonic systems. However, in my experience the word was used somewhat ...
0
votes
0answers
68 views

Chord progression analysis

In the song "If You Have To Ask" by the Red Hot Chili Peppers there is this instrumental funk interlude with a bunch of seventh and ninth chords and I want to understand this progression more by ...
1
vote
3answers
77 views

Harmonising cadences given the bass line. When and when not to use inversions?

I've been completing practice exams online for Grade 5 theory and I'm struggling with some of the cadence questions. I feel that, without the use of inversions, you reach a dead end. The questions ...
3
votes
3answers
625 views

How to grok 20th-century pop music as evolution of classical harmony

With sufficient training, a student of harmony may build forwards from Bach through Mozart, Beethoven, Chopin, etc... understanding music of a period in terms of what has gone before. But it's going ...
9
votes
2answers
366 views

Melodic Minor - Uses

The one problem I have with the Melodic Minor is that I just don't know how and where to use it. From my comprehension, it is the Minor scale when descending and when ascending it has a maj6 and maj7. ...
0
votes
2answers
141 views

Harmonize any scale. Is there a rule?

A mayor scale is harmonized using triads using the pattern 1-3-5. Is this rule used to harmonize any given scale? Can the bebop scale be harmonized the same way than the major scale? Special scales ...
3
votes
3answers
927 views

Open/Close Position Chords: What I am missing?

Working through Hindemith's harmony I encountered the following diagram of all the valid positions for a C-Major chord in strict four-part writing. I am befuddled as to why the third chord in the ...
0
votes
2answers
55 views

Russell Lydian chromatic (again)

One more question about Russell Lydian theory. Russell uses as an example the Lydian C scale: C-D-E-F#-G-A-B-C comparing it with C maj scale, then he starts to explain his theory as if they belong to ...
13
votes
9answers
5k views

Is Emajor the dominant chord in the key of A minor?

I read somewhere that Emajor is the dominant (V) chord in A minor. Is this correct? If so, why is it not Eminor, since the A minor scale has no sharps or flats in it?
2
votes
1answer
121 views

English name for 3-tone chords that have the bass tone different from the root

I've been studying Croatian music theory with durs and mols and H-s and not English so I don't know English names. I'm encountering one problem while writing the 63 chord in jazz harmony for to play ...
8
votes
3answers
2k views

Is there some trick for counterpoint beyond 2 voices?

I really suck at chord harmony, so whenever I compose, I tend to use counterpoint a lot. Counterpoint is somewhat easy when you just have two voices. Because I just compose for fun, I generally do ...
6
votes
1answer
326 views

What are the Coltrane Changes?

Also known as Coltrane Matrix, Coltrane Cycle, chromatic third relations, and multi-tonic changes. What are the Coltrane Changes? What's the theory behind them? How are they used in improvisation, ...
3
votes
7answers
1k views

Will a song written in a key only use chords in that key?

When you figure out a key that a song is written in. Will the entire song use the chords in that key? With maybe an accidental?? I've tried several different methods.
3
votes
2answers
556 views

Harmonic analysis of “Walk this Way” by Aerosmith

I'm trying to do harmonic analysis of "Walk this Way" by Aerosmith. Verses and choruses uses I to IV progression, but I wonder about the riff in the bridge. It seem to be played in the E key. Joe ...
14
votes
2answers
575 views

Should the dominant-seventh chord in just intonation use 9:5 for its seventh, or rather 16:9?

It may be just out of habit, what with the 12-edo temperament all around us, but anyway: I find the dominant-seventh rendition 20:25:30:36 sounds extremely harsh. In particular, the tritone from the ...
4
votes
1answer
216 views

History of “jazz minor/melodic minor” harmony

I'm curious about the development of modern (post-bop-ish) jazz harmony. In Mark Levine's Jazz Theory Book, he shows how modes of the melodic minor scale can be used to form and improvise over chords ...
6
votes
4answers
226 views

What are some harmonic options for layering guitar lines while recording?

I would like to layer multiple guitar lines for a section of a song that I'm working on. What are some harmonic variations that I would be able to use?
6
votes
3answers
1k views

Why does the IV - V♯ - I chord progression work so well?

The song Long Away by Queen does this, but it's a pattern you'll probably find in many songs. Basically, I've noticed that when moving from IV to I, a V♯ or V♯maj7 chord is sometimes used as a ...