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

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2answers
39 views

Why Cminmaj7 is used and the purpose of minor and major are together?

I am learning the construction of 7th chords and this Cminmaj7 chord made me really confused when I came across in my studies. Why do both minor and major 7 exist together? Also, is this a consonant ...
22
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7answers
25k views

How to identify the root note of a chord

I struggle with chords on the staff because I'm not sure which note is the root note. Is it the top note with the rest of the notes falling below it? E.g., if the top note is C, and bundled below it ...
23
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4answers
3k views

Physics behind why a bugle can play several notes, while a whistle only plays one note

A bugle and a whistle are essentially both tubes open at both ends. A bugle has no keys, yet you can play several notes on it. A whistle also has no keys, but it only plays a single note. Why is this? ...
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3answers
135 views

How to play a Pentatonic Major using a Pentatonic Minor 3 octave shape

Ok, so the : C Major Pentatonic and the A Minor Pentatonic are supposed to be the same stuff. But I'm unsure how that happens theoretically. (Apart from the obvious fact that they have the ...
3
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2answers
47 views

In Four Part Writing, is an augmented unison interval in a single voice allowed?

I'm composing a traditional four-part part-writing piece with a soprano, alto, tenor and bass. The song progresses from a F Major chord to an A Major chord. In the former chord, the bass is on C, and ...
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1answer
55 views

How can I change the style/rhythm of a song?

I came across a video by Maan Hamadeh, in this he has played Fur Elise in different styles. What is the theory behind this ?
2
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4answers
126 views

What do uncommon time signatures consist of?

Take a X/4, it means "the measure will contain X notes, the value of which are 1/4" I understand this concept for X/Y signatures, with Y being a power of 2. But what does that mean for the others ? ...
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0answers
30 views

What are the common features of the basic musical periods? [on hold]

I was given an assignment to do and have to state how certain pieces are different to the conventional music of that time, specifically classical music. So, it would be really handy if somebody could ...
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2answers
90 views

At what speed should notes be played?

I'm in the very early stages of reading music. There are great resources on the internet but I'm struggling to find a suitable explanation for a 'Time Signature' that I completely understand. I think ...
3
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5answers
137 views

Tonality of modes?

With the basic modes like phrygian, Lydian etc, the modes with the same notes as C major ( so no flats or sharps) how do they sound different from a major or minor scale.( this is like E phrygian).
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4answers
119 views

How to learn musical theory?

I am taking 1/2 hour lessons in classical guitar and progressing well. I guess I am at the high end of beginner level, just finishing Aaron Shearer's first book. But I don't know how to gain an ...
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2answers
82 views

How does a Time Signature affect tuplet duration?

Take a X/Y time signature (but I don't think X matters here). What would be the duration of a n-tuplet (of 8th, 16th and 32nd notes), depending on Y and n?
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2answers
103 views

Can a note be heared in wrong pitch?

Just like Optical illusion happens to our eyes. can this happen to our ears? Consider a well tuned Piano. can we make hearing illusion with music? because of my horrible English and lack of ...
2
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1answer
165 views

Half oval 3 over notes

I'm a bit confused about this graphic, notice the half ovals on top with the 3 in the center: Is that a "triplet" and the same as this graphic in guitar pro? Please note that I have searched but ...
28
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11answers
9k views

Why Is Just Intonation Impractical?

I've read about the debate of "just intonation" vs 12-tone equal temperament. And nowhere it was clearly stated why just intonation is impractical. Here are my assumptions. Please let me know if I am ...
5
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2answers
926 views

What is the relationship between notes sung and chords played?

When I sing and play guitar, I don't play every note I sing. Usually the guitar plays one chord where I may sing a number of notes. I understand that it is necessary to listen to the song to know ...
5
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2answers
83 views

How did the plagal modes differ from their authentic counterpart in practice?

In the traditional modal system there were eight modes. Four that were authentic and four were plagal. These modes are depicted below: Based on the description of the modes the final note of the ...
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1answer
52 views

Ways of modulating to a new TONICA (root) [closed]

In another post we were recently talking about modulation and how to define the term in contrast to an immediate unprepared change to another key. So I was wondering how people of different musical ...
3
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4answers
158 views

Is there a term that describes straight 8ths / 16ths vs swing?

I'm a student and have been playing exercises that are either straight 8ths, swing 8ths, straight 16ths or swing 16ths. I'm wondering if there's a term for these different rhythms. If used in a ...
4
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6answers
196 views

Using the correct enharmonic equivalent

I'm trying to figure out in which situations say, a G# is preferred to an Ab. I know that the two spellings wont necessarily represent tones of identical frequency, and that they only coincide in ...
10
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3answers
717 views

What mode consists of the note G A Bb C Db E F G?

I was playing random scales . I came to a strange nice sounding mode,but could not find out what it's name theoretically. (Even I could not find a tonic sounding in it) The scale/mode notes are : G ...
0
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3answers
89 views

Minor Chord Progression

Let's say we have this chord progression (keyboard and SATB voicing): b: i-V-i If I understand it correctly, we have to use harmonic minor in chord progressions. Thus, we never use natural minor for ...
2
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4answers
129 views

Should I learn the CAGED patterns for harmonic and melodic minor scales?

So I learned all the 12 patterns for major scale. Should learn the CAGED system for harmonic and melodic minor scales because there are 4 notes on some strings?
4
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4answers
2k views

Does playing in scale mean only using notes from that scale?

Many melodies contain notes that are not from the scale they are composed in. For example, "Stairway to Heaven" solo contains an A minor pentatonic scale plus an additional F note. I've read that this ...
6
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7answers
1k 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 ...
5
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4answers
10k views

Piano music with two treble clefs, and notes between staves

I do not understand why there are two treble cleff staves and why there are music notes in the middle of the two staves. Which hand should I play those notes with and why are there two treble cleff ...
52
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22answers
3k views

Ways to get out of a scalar rut?

I'm a well versed and experienced guitarist. I have a decent sense for rhythm and melody, but I have a VERY hard time with soloing. I know you've heard it all before I'm one of those guys that got ...
4
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3answers
360 views

Pentatonic Scales Question

I'm learning the notes on the fret board and I just wanted to ask something about the pentatonic scales you see, A minor pentatonic is A C D E G on the 5th fret, but when I play it on the 2nd fret its ...
8
votes
3answers
486 views

When to use inversions in harmonizing a bass line

What exactly is the procedure for harmonizing a bass line? In my class, the teacher introduced inversions of chords, which are not hard to understand per se, but I can't wrap my head around how can I ...
2
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5answers
317 views

How do you write a corresponding bassline for an already written melody?

In my music theory class I have created a 16-measure melody, and have now been instructed by my teacher to create a corresponding bass-line for that melody. (I scored an 88% on my melody, so I assume ...
18
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4answers
1k views

Why is bass note so important in harmonic analysis of music?

In any type of harmonic analysis the bass plays big part in determining the function of the harmony. There are even special ways describe what note of the chord is in the bass (known as inversions) ...
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2answers
199 views

What do these unusual time signature symbols mean?

I have been studying advanced music theory lately. Having explored a wide range of musical symbols, I was surprised to encounter the following time signature symbols I've never seen before in ...
7
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3answers
270 views

Dealing with synthesized sounds where only a subset of tones sound good

I created a heavily modulated and filtered bass sound on F-1 but cannot play anything other than the F-1 itself and its # as the rest have too many conflicting frequencies. How can these two keys be ...
0
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2answers
38 views

When to learn music reading?

Do I have to know some scales before learning to read music notation? And please recommend me a good book to learn read music on the guitar.
4
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2answers
181 views

Omitting the 5th in four part counterpoint

When writing four part counterpoint in context of the common practice period it is common to omit the 5th of a chord when in a jam. Is it always ok to omit the 5th and are there times when the 5th of ...
1
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4answers
104 views

Theory about chords

How can I learn about the relationships between chords to build chords progressions? Every book I read explains how to build chords, but they don't teach how to put the chords in progression. They ...
13
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2answers
2k views

Why do the notes of a blues scale sound good with the I, IV, and V chords?

If you are playing the blues in the key of C, any note in the blues key of C should sound good in the melody with either of the C, F or G (I, IV or V) major chords in the bass. Why is this and how do ...
19
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8answers
10k views

What is the “theory” behind “odd time signatures”?

There are a number of bands, Genesis, The Police, Crack the Sky, Gentle Giant, that have all incorporated unusual time signatures as their core sound - some entire "pop"songs, "Ordinary World - Duran ...
6
votes
2answers
483 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 ...
6
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1answer
256 views

Rules of how the bass should (and should not) move in chord progressions

I've seen questions and answers regarding certain rules how the bass should move and resolve from one chord to another (especially when a chord is in an inversion and the bass note is not the root ...
8
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3answers
728 views

Can bass chord notes be different octaves after playing the root?

The reason for my question is because it seems like everything I read, the bass note is normally the root of the chord, but I am outlining an Am chord where E is the bass note. I thought I found an ...
4
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3answers
132 views

Does the bass always have to harmonise with the lead?

I have written a half decent lead, at least for my level, and I am now trying to harmonise a bass with it. I am employing one of the most basic kind of methods to achieve this - playing the root note ...
64
votes
7answers
9k views

Why are there twelve notes in an octave?

I know that one scale consists of 12 half-tones. But my question is still: Why? Why not 13 or 11?
2
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2answers
4k 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 ...
3
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1answer
206 views

Chords Built On Different Scales

Can chords be built on different scales i.e. harmonic minor, melodic minor, and when they are, how is this known?
12
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2answers
672 views

How to interpret a switch from Em (Aeolian) to Bm?

I'm self taught, so I know just a few things on scales and modes, some probably wrong. So the other day I was composing a new song. I believe it starts in E minor, as I was playing over the Chords Em ...
5
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3answers
928 views

How to make a chord progress go from the key of C major to the key of A minor?

How do you chord progress go from the key of C major to the key of A minor? I would do it this way: progress to the III chord (Em), change the III chord to a Dominant 7th form (E7), now the E7 chord ...
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4answers
205 views

What are some effective ways to use a key change during a song?

In my own songwriting, I might change keys to reinforce a change in the direction of the lyrics. For example if the first two verses are first person but the last verse is 3rd person, I might ...
5
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4answers
355 views

What is theory of music about?

What kind of questions does theory of music try to answer? I wonder whether there are formal theories of music which define axioms and rules of inference. There must be plenty possible small ...
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3answers
611 views

How Long Can an Anacrucis Be?

Most anacruses are less than a bar long. Often a one note pick up. An example that brings up my question is 'Fur Elise', which seems to have a pick up which lasts for four beats (in 3 time), before ...