The study of how music works, seeking to identify structures and patterns in music.

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9
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4answers
4k views

Why have I never found any music written in the key of C Sharp Major?

Music is written in almost every key that corresponds to every note that is on my piano keyboard. There is clearly a C Sharp (black key right of C) on my piano keyboard but I don't recall ever seeing ...
0
votes
1answer
73 views

Why (Occidental) conventional rhythm notation became conventional? [closed]

Human languages evolve and adapt themselves to the needs (phonetics, auditory, contextual) of the users. To what extent has been showed that Occidental music notation followed that path? Is it ...
2
votes
3answers
152 views

Chord name does not match the notes it's written above

Sometimes I find the chords above a guitar tab hard to understand. For example, in this piece: There is a C chord written above the first bar even though the note beneath is a single open E-string ...
11
votes
2answers
205 views

What makes graduate-level music theory different from undergraduate-level music theory?

It's been years since I graduated with a music minor. My background consists of: Traditional two-semester sequence in music theory (basic notation to borrowed chords), i.e., Kostka/Payne ...
-1
votes
2answers
127 views

How are notated the sequences of durations (13/27, 1/27, 13/27) and (4/81, 259/1296, 1/1296)?

The sequence (13/27, 1/27, 13/27) sum to a whole note, and it derives (presumably) from triplets, while the sequence (4/81, 259/1296, 1/1296) sum to a quarter, and may derive from triplets (the first ...
5
votes
4answers
539 views

Is it possible that a music piece written in a “flat key signature” contains sharp-accidentals (and vice versa)?

E.g. the key signature G Major contains one sharp (which is why I consider it as a "sharp key signature"). Can a music piece written in G Major contain a Db? Or can it only be a C# because the key ...
1
vote
3answers
74 views

Dropping the 5th degree and counting a C♯Dom7

I'm currently writing out (into a chord diagram book) all the different voicing/finger positions for the seventh chords. Some voicings are difficult to play and I so my initial thought was "oh, the ...
3
votes
3answers
134 views

Changing songs' chords to Arpeggios

I want to know how I change chords to Arpeggios in a song? For example how do you change (Somebody's me) by Enrique from chords to Arpeggios or single notes? Can you show me this or another example as ...
4
votes
3answers
69 views

Diminished second and NCTs

Are notes that are a diminished second from a chord tone considered part of the chord, or are they considered an NCT? For example, if the chord contains an F and there's an adjacent E#.
11
votes
5answers
2k views

Are sharp keys “bright” and flat keys “dark”?

I was reading this book and on the "Circle of Fifths" chapter it claims that keys with sharp key signatures (C, G, D, ...) are "often though by musicians" to be "bright" sounding and those with flat ...
4
votes
1answer
82 views

What does an apostrophe on top of a note mean?

In my music (Trombone/Baritone), I see an apostrophe on top of a few notes. What does this mean?
3
votes
4answers
3k views

Are ties necessary?

From a theoretical point of view (let's leave apart for a moment interpretation and writing), are ties necessary to account for note values that notes and dotted notes cannot provide? Two tied ...
6
votes
4answers
184 views

Tonality and Rules

One can find many books on "tonality"during the common practice period. e.g., Piston. Tonality seems to be definable as the way in which composers express the chromatic scale in a organized way ...
1
vote
1answer
75 views

Schoenberg's Hexachord decoded

I had a question regarding the cryptogram of Schoenberg's famous hexachord. The Schoenberg hexachord has a pitch class set of (012569) and a vector of <3,1,3,4,3,1>. In other words, the notes are ...
1
vote
5answers
165 views

Vocals on guitar

Okay so I asked a question earlier and I wasn't so clear. I'll try and rephrase it. I want to learn how to take a song, and then play something on the guitar that sounds like the vocals. For example: ...
0
votes
2answers
41 views

What does the compound time require to be?

I am trying to study music theory which would help me learn various aspects of music, so I started with basics and then time signature. It states that for a music to be in compound time each beat is ...
7
votes
3answers
165 views

Continuous Music Theory

Is there a musical theory of harmony or a system of chord-understanding that does not rely on the 12-tone temperament? For example, a fretless instrument has (theoretically) an infinity of tones ...
-1
votes
2answers
116 views

Whats the fastest way for a beginner to learn a song

I would like to know how to play bizarre love triangle on piano. Sheet music can be found here: http://www.musicnotes.com/sheetmusic/mtd.asp?ppn=MN0130187. What would be the fastest way to learn how ...
1
vote
3answers
133 views

Music Theory Augmented 6th chord: Analysis of Haydn String Quartet op.74 no.3, II

So I wasn't able to post a picture. In this piece on measure 34, we modulate from C major to e minor. In measure 36, the notes played are C in the bass, E, F# and G in the alto clef, G, F, E in second ...
1
vote
4answers
121 views

Is there any rules to choosing appropriate drum pattern for a melody?

I'm just a beginner in writing music. and I am learning this just for fun. I had read some books about writing music, but still confused with some questions, this is one of my question. I had tried ...
0
votes
2answers
52 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 ...
-2
votes
2answers
89 views

Changing a song's key vs. changing chord voicings

My question relates to playing a song with chords. Why would I want to shift a key up or down when I can just play a song in its original key with higher or lower sounding chord voicings? I also ...
2
votes
2answers
67 views

How can I improve my interpretation of rhythm and percussion?

I am a non-drummer/non-percussionist well versed, for my personal purposes, in tonal harmony - up to the point where tonal chord structures can be implemented without functional movement and serve to ...
1
vote
1answer
48 views

George Russell Lydian chromatic concept

I am reading the George Russell book about Lydian chromatic concept. If anyone has ever read it, maybe you can help me in understanding his use of the term "Lydian do" as well as "Ionian do". My ...
2
votes
3answers
121 views

bV substitution in ii V I

So I have been playing around with the good'ol ii V I standard and I have found, just by playing around, that instead of going to the V, it sounds odd, but you can substitute it for a bV. Key: D ...
0
votes
0answers
11 views

how to add chords for a melody i have composed? [duplicate]

i am intermediate level guitar player and have learned to play melody by ear rather than the conventional way of learning first chords on guitar.I have now learned chords also.I compose many new ...
2
votes
1answer
216 views

Why do these two guitar notes create a warble sound?

On a standard tuned guitar, if you play the 12th fret on the top E string and the 16th fret of the B string at the same time, you get a rather impressive warbling sound. It seems similar to if you ...
4
votes
4answers
111 views

What does the key of a song mean?

I want to know what it means, in terms of the scales and chords involved, when we say that a song is played in a certain 'key'.
1
vote
3answers
160 views

Modulating from key Gm to key Bbm

I'm trying to modulate from the song 7 Years (Gm) to the song Hometown Glory (Bbm). How do I write a something that joins the two?
0
votes
2answers
55 views

What is the term for a chord change from 0-5-7 to 0-4-7?

From what I understand, the 0-5-7 triad is a sus4 and 0-4-7 a major. So if I have C-F-G and descend a semitone from F to E into a C major chord what would be the technical term for it? I like to use ...
2
votes
1answer
90 views

Cadences for Modes

For each of the modes, is there a certain chord that goes before the targeted I or i chord? For instance, it seems in the Phrygian mode that II to i is a fairly strong progression. In Ionian, ...
6
votes
3answers
164 views

What is the interval from C double flat to E double sharp called?

What is this interval called in terms of relative scale degrees?
7
votes
6answers
492 views

Is there a term for chords like F/G and C/D?

Chords like F/G and C/D are really quite common in jazz, blues and soul music yet I have never heard or been able to find a concise name for them. To be clear, I am referring to any major (or indeed ...
3
votes
4answers
86 views

Does anyone have any sources I could use to talk about who influenced Bach?

I am writing an essay about the synthesis of music theory Bach used to create his own music theory, especially in his fugal works. Any help would be appreciated, but if people could provide sources ...
1
vote
2answers
261 views

When writing a melody, is the scale used determined by the current chord playing (in the chord progression) or by the song's key as a whole?

This is an embarrassingly basic question, but it's been in the back of my mind for a while, and I haven't been able to find an answer. I've been studying very basic music theory lately and trying to ...
9
votes
2answers
2k views

Why is there a natural accidental on this C?

In Simandl's 30 Etudes for String Bass, Etude #10, there is this natural accidental on the note C (fourth bar of the second line): Since there is no alteration of the note either by the key ...
0
votes
0answers
20 views

Why `Do` is called as `C`? [duplicate]

Alphabet is start with A and scale is start with Do(in C Major scale) but we call Do as C and La as A. There is any behind story or rule that I don't know?
2
votes
1answer
349 views

How can I overcome '8va' for a few notes?

Let's say I have a whole passage marked with 8va, like below: I want to play just the circled notes at their normal octave. Is there a way to denote this, instead of ending the 8va bracket and ...
2
votes
1answer
335 views

What is the interval between two enharmonic notes?

The interval between, say, C4 and D4 is a major 2nd. What is the interval between B#3 and C4? Is it still a 2nd? For lack of a better term would it be something like a minor minor 2nd?
3
votes
1answer
90 views

Playing Over Changes and Subsitutions

Im a fairly advanced guitarist/musician and love improvising, as most of us do. However, when a progression goes out of the main key, such as borrowing or subsituting, I tend to get lost in my head. ...
2
votes
2answers
85 views

I need help figuring out some of these note values for my sequencer

Alright so I'm using a sequencer that allows you to input notes and change the values of those notes, but for the note values, there are notation symbols used, the majority are quite easy to figure ...
1
vote
1answer
139 views

What is the difference between the Circle of Fifths and the Camelot Wheel?

I understand the Camelot Wheel is used by DJs to mix songs of different keys together by using adjacent and relative major/minor keys. Can't this same information be deduced from the Circle of Fifths? ...
1
vote
4answers
62 views

What basics should I know to accompany on piano?

I need to accompany on piano for some blues songs. I play a little on piano in childhood and know basic theory. What I need to accompany for this songs: Sweet Home Chicago B.B.King - Everyday I ...
5
votes
6answers
957 views

How does “Music Theory” all tie together?

I'm a self-taught musician and have been playing for years, but being self-taught really limited my knowledge of music theory (in that I know pretty much nothing about it) and I'm having difficulty ...
4
votes
3answers
577 views

AP Music Theory

I'd like to self-study for the Advanced Placement Music Theory Examination in the United States of America (offered by the College Board, a nonprofit corporation in the USA). This is an examination ...
3
votes
1answer
80 views

Alternatives to standard western notation geared towards composers?

While the western standard for music notation is good for both composers and performers alike, there are certain areas where it is lacking, especially when it comes to new developments in music ...
3
votes
7answers
879 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
1answer
89 views

Is there a term in Western music theory for the underlying mood of a music genre?

Though this doesn't seem to apply to all music genres, I get the impression that some of them have an "underlying mood". For instance, flamenco (the genre I specialize in) has strong melancholy ...
0
votes
1answer
63 views

What's the term for rapidly blending two pitches a single time in a beat?

Here's some examples of what I mean: A chiptune song's lead synth (@ 0:31) A song from Touhou (@ 0:51) Is there a general term for this? Is the term for the vocals version different to the term for ...
-1
votes
1answer
77 views

Why do Open Tunings work? [closed]

Anyone have any idea why open tunings with the A and E low strings in unison and changing the rest of the strings based on tonality works for playing (where you are only fretting with one finger or ...