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

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2
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1answer
74 views

How to understand a 32 bar progression

I am learning some country progressions. There is a waltz time 32 bar progression in the style of some old Tex Ritter song, I think. It's not just two 16 bar progressions (the last two 16 bars are ...
16
votes
5answers
3k views

Are doubly augmented and doubly diminished intervals practical?

In music theory when naming intervals, a lowered diminished interval is a doubly diminished interval (dd) and a raised augmented interval is a doubly augmented interval (AA). One example is a C♯ ...
1
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1answer
41 views

What is state and response and modal sequence in music theory structure analysis?

So in for say a sentence structure, we have the basic idea phrase, and then it repeats the basic idea again. However, the second repetition basic idea can be either an exact repetition, state and ...
19
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6answers
2k views

How to formulate a chord on the piano?

I play guitar, and am attempting to teach myself the piano. Which notes from a scale form the chord on the keyboard? Is there a common rule for this?
2
votes
1answer
88 views

What is a Schenkerian graph?

I just started reading Audacious Euphony: Chromaticism and the Triads Second Nature pretty early on it mentioned Schenkerian graphs and put them in the same group of analysis as Roman Numeral ...
3
votes
2answers
112 views

Is there an easier way to remember the notes in 11th and 13th chords?

Is there an easier way to remember the notes in 11th and 13th chords, like maybe an alteration of a different chord or a combination of two triads? For example, if I see a 13th chord, I have to think ...
8
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6answers
718 views

Algorithm for Transposing Chords Between Keys

I'm writing software that transposes sheet music between keys and I'm still new at music theory so I was hoping someone who knows more could let me know if my approach is correct. Here's my process ...
4
votes
3answers
792 views

Understanding music with multiple key changes within chord progressions

So this has been bothering me for some time now; I've been making beats for maybe 7-8 years now but my earlier work is heavily-sampled. I just started actually picking up piano, but on my own, ...
4
votes
1answer
206 views

How are keys in the circle of fifths related?

I know this seems like a basic question, and in the traditional sense, I actually know how their related. Though, whilst reading a book titled 'harmony for computer musicians', I've come across a ...
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2answers
2k views

Determining modes in a minor Key

Speaking of Functional harmony; If a song is in key C, then we call the C major scale from E to E is a Phrygian mode. Good, what if a song is in key Am, which is actually relative of C and also Am ...
8
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3answers
280 views

Can someone explain what a voice is in piano?

So as I was browsing the forum, I saw many posts about voices in piano, and how you should play them all at the same time. I really don't get when a voice exists in a song, and how I should I play it. ...
3
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4answers
2k views

What does it mean for a song to be played in C minor, D, etc?

I like listening to classical music, I noticed that a song may come in many versions (example : Hungarian Dances). I know what majors and minors scales are, but my music theory knowledge ends there. I ...
5
votes
3answers
432 views

General procedure for determining the name of an interval given a major key / diatonic collection

I'm attempting to program a library that lets one make use of concepts from Peter Westergaard's tonal theory. The current problem I'm trying to solve is to determine the specific name of an interval ...
4
votes
3answers
6k views

How do you compose a Dominant Seventh Scale?

It seems like you just make the seventh note flat, but are there any restrictions to that? Can any scale become a Dominant Seventh Scale by slight modification or does it differ on a case-by-case ...
7
votes
3answers
4k views

On a piano scale what is considered “middle C”?

I'm learning to play the piano and I'm slightly confused after reading this: http://pianoscale.org/scales/root/c/major/ Is the 1st note in the treble clef the same as the 8th notes in the bass ...
0
votes
3answers
83 views

Common denominator bpm

I have a video of nature. I noticed that there are three repeating elements, one has 80.197844 bpm, the other 64.664 bpm and the other 67.4 bpm. I want to compose music for it. To get started, how do ...
2
votes
4answers
669 views

Why does it take 700 cents to get to a perfect 5th, which is 3/2 (one and a half) from the root?

I think I have the wrong perspective. If you take an octave and express it in cents, you get 1200. Half of that is 600. A perfect 5th is 1.5 (3/2) of the root. But 600 is not a perfect fifth, 700 ...
5
votes
2answers
181 views

How could I create a musical vocabulary based on a group of similar classical pieces?

Sometimes I'll be working on a group of pieces and realize that I'd like to experiment with abstracting some of the musical ideas (rhythms, harmonies, etc) into a musical vocabulary that I could use ...
1
vote
3answers
101 views

Re-harmonize the chord with the bass?

Hi i'm a bass player and as any other bassist i was looking to improve my bass skills and I've always wondered how I could change the root note of a certain chord to give it a different feel. For ...
1
vote
2answers
94 views

Help me name this scale

I have a six-tone scale with the notes A#,B,C,D,D#,G. As far as I'm aware this is not contained in any other well known scale. What should I call it?
3
votes
2answers
20k views

On a guitar, what keys correspond to different capo postions?

I've long had this question. I know some music theory, but I can only get a vague idea as to the progression of keys when moving the capo down a guitar's neck. I'm fairly certain that the guitar is in ...
13
votes
6answers
14k views

Polymeter vs Polyrhythm

What is the difference between a polymeter and a polyrhythm? Do these words mean anything different for different instruments? PS: I'm a drummer.
0
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2answers
89 views

Need help understanding how this progression fits in with music theory

I am learning a new song on the piano. I have questions: The chorus includes the F (or G sharp if played on the piano) chord but this chord is outside of the key (Bb). It sounds good but how do you ...
1
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2answers
81 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 ...
8
votes
2answers
638 views

What does a pair of long horizontal lines between two whole notes mean?

While writing out some sheet music from this video, I came across notation I have never seen before. It is this on the lead guitar parts 1 and 2: I also found it interesting that it is notated with ...
23
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8answers
2k views

What are modes and how are they useful?

I'm a self-taught guitarist with zero to little experience in music theory. After marrying a violinist I found that there's a lot to music theory that I know tribally but don't understand the ...
20
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2answers
507 views

Is this piece of renaissance music really in the locrian mode?

A fifteenth-century dance manual contains this piece of music: which appears to be (uncharacteristically) in the locrian mode. Is it really, or am I mis-reading? Does anybody know of other music ...
6
votes
2answers
83 views

Large Groups Tending Towards Specific Keys?

The gym that I go to made an announcement about a staff member's birthday and invited everyone to sing. Over 100 people started singing in a different key but by the end most everyone was singing in ...
2
votes
4answers
189 views

Bass clef changed to treble clef in the middle of the music sheet [duplicate]

If the bass clef changes to treble clef in the music sheet, would you read the bottom treble clef as the bass clef notes or treble clef notes?
24
votes
4answers
33k views

What's the difference between “modal music” and “tonal music”?

As the title says, what's the difference between "modal music" and "tonal music"? Is there also any other classification besides "modal music" and "tonal music"?
0
votes
1answer
48 views

question on a certain chord progression

I am learning a slow blues called After hours in a video lesson with Johnnie Johnsson. It includes some sheet music with this chord progression: 1:G 2:C7 3:G 4:G Db9 5:C9 6:C9 7:G7 8:G7 9:G/A 10:D G/D ...
2
votes
4answers
65 views

Time signature equivalent - two bars in Waltz time

I'm teaching a dance class in Waltz, the music is of course in 3/4 time. I wanted a way to describe to the students the beats in 2 consecutive bars, which I thought of as describing as '6/4' - I know ...
4
votes
5answers
114 views

Learning while recovering from tendonitis

I've recently developed some tendonitis in both hands and will be significantly reducing my practice hours for about a month (hopefully!). I had been putting in a lot of hours before with my ...
4
votes
3answers
618 views

Why does the chord progression Gmaj - F#maj - Amaj sound the way it does?

I really like the chord progression Gmaj - F#maj - Amaj ... (I think it can be written I, VII, II)? While all the chords are major, there is some sadness about it. What is the story behind this ...
4
votes
3answers
219 views

Is there an accepted way to numerically represent note values out of standard notation?

Say, a quarter note, how is it most commonly represented? "1/4"?, "quarter"? What if it's a dotted-note? It would be useful to have a simplified numeric representation for note values, e.g. the ...
29
votes
11answers
7k views

What is the difference between a “riff” and a “melody”?

How do I tell when a riff becomes a melody, or is it even important to know? Can you construct a song around a riff - what are some suggestions on how to construct a song in that manner?
3
votes
2answers
109 views

I am playing a song in D Major, and it contains an Am. How do I notate this in roman numerals?

I am learning music theory and I was told to transcribe some songs and also note the chords as roman numerals. The song I have is in the key of D Major, but contains an A minor, which to my ...
14
votes
4answers
1k views

Can one measure the “distance” between chords? If so, how?

I was reading an article an the author gave the following sequence of chords: C A7 Dm G C I would like to measure the "distance" if there is such a thing between C and A7. Can this be done? In ...
18
votes
6answers
27k views

How to tell the time signature of a song by listening?

Every song has some kind of time signature; even if different parts of the song have different time signatures, there is always a time signature. When learning a song by ear and no score, knowing the ...
20
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7answers
11k views

Why does the Dorian mode on C have two flats?

I'm studying scale modes and I just found on Wikipedia that the Dorian mode on C has two flats... Why is this? Because the Dorian mode is just the major scale (Ionian) starting from the second ...
5
votes
1answer
330 views

What is the math behind how keys/holes on woodwind instruments affect the pitch?

To make this question more specific, I'll provide an example of what I mean. Let's say you have an instrument that's just a tube you blow into, and it has one hole exactly halfway down the tube (I ...
3
votes
6answers
3k views

How to differentiate between 12/8 vs 6/8 timing (or hemiola)

How would a composer differentiate between a 12/8 and a 6/8 time signature? On 3/4 timing you'd have 3 quarter notes as your rhythm, on 6/8 you'd have 2 dotted quarter notes correct? I wrote a song ...
4
votes
3answers
464 views

Question about time signatures with voices

I'm learning the basics of musical theory and I see this sheet and get this question, the white dotted noted has a time of (2 + 1/2) right? But with the value of the black note the compass make a ...
35
votes
4answers
3k views

What's so special about minor and major scales?

background: I'm an amateur and self-learner pianist. What I know, I know from books or google, so I'll start with summarising what I already know - please don't hesitate to correct me if I have ...
12
votes
5answers
341 views

What are the benefits of determining form before composing?

I've heard time and time again of composers who say "It is better [for beginners] to know your form, and have a general idea of important chord progressions before you begin thinking seriously about ...
0
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1answer
158 views

What key is this song in? [closed]

Does anyone know what key the following would be in? Any help is appreciated!
4
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3answers
346 views

Musical construction in rock - what does this mean?

Andrew Chester writes (emphasis mine): Western classical music is the apodigm of the extensional form of musical construction. Theme and variations, counterpoint, tonality (as used in classical ...
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vote
5answers
190 views

In any major key, what Roman Numerals indicate the major, minor, and diminished chords?

I was wondering what the Roman Numerals are. I though it was I,III, V, for major key but that was not it.
14
votes
4answers
25k views

The differences between natural, harmonic and melodic minors

I'm studying scales and came across the natural, harmonic, and melodic minors. I understand the patterns for each scale but what other important differences exist between the three?
14
votes
1answer
652 views

What is a Neapolitan 6th?

In studying music theory I have heard the term Neapolitan 6th quite a few times, but I'm not quite sure what it is. What is a Neapolitan 6th and how is it used in a composition?