In "A Day in the Life" by the Beatles, I notice the melody plays a note (E) just before the second chord which looks like a suspension except it never gets resolved as there is no E in Bm. Is there a name for this kind of suspension in classical music? I read about all the different kind of non-chord tones (neighbour, passing tone etc etc) and couldn't find one that suits this description.
note (E) just before the second chord which looks like a suspension
This is a syncopation and anticipation, so the E note "belongs" to the Bm chord. Don't consider it as part of G (even though it would work as 6 of G). Melody anticipates the harmony.
In this case it's just a slight rhythmic anticipation, but consider this section of Charlie Parker's "Billie's Bounce":
The last E in the first measure does not belong to F7, it rather introduces A-7 in the following measure. Jazz improvisers often take it even further, and when a modulation is incoming they play a whole pick-up phrase in new key in advance.
there is no E in Bm.
Yes, but it is not a terribly bad sound either. This is not classical music. While 11 is typically an "avoid note" in major chords, it often works well with minor chords.
Of course 11 won't be as stable as 1, 3 or 5. But this is just middle of the phrase. The excerpt misses the last B note in the following measure, which closes the phrase. So it makes a perfect sense to make middle of the phrase less stable.
What do you call a "suspension" that wasn't a chord tone in the initial chord?
In other words, I think you shouldn't identify this as a suspension, because it doesn't suspend a chord tone in the first place.
the line moves from a
D which is a chord tone in
G major to neighbor tone
E, then when the chord changes to
E is still a non-chord tone which moves back to the
D which is again a chord tone, but in
Bm rather than
FWIW, in the spirit of @Tim's answer, and shying away from applying common practice theory to rock music, you might want to check out Temperley, Melodic/Harmonic Divorce in Rock. It talks about traditional non-chord tone identification along with a unique treatment, the "divorce", of "dissonant" melodic tones from chords in rock music.
I played this short phrase at the piano and included the following
Em chord. I think it's pretty reasonable to look at this as just
Em (sort of
Em7) and the
F# in the bass is the actual non-chord tone as a passing tone. Especially in this rock/pop style I think it's hard to regard an
add6 like a classical dissonance, a dissonant tone that must resolve.
To some degree it's just six of one, half dozen of the other. The important thing is the phrase is all tonic elaboration.
It does resolve on D, the intervening B does not affect the resolution. However as Michael Curtis pointed out, the E is not a chord tone so not really a suspension. It is an appoggiatura and is very common in most music idioms. Another Beatles' song Yesterday makes much use of appoggiaturas.
However in pop, rock, folk music etc. the pentatonic scale has such a powerful linear effect that it may not be necessarily be exactly related to the underlying chords. The listener often hears music as linear rather than vertical so a non-chord tone would not necessarily be heard to clash with the harmony. Sometimes jazz improvisers play arpeggios that are different from the underlying chords.
This was written in the mid-1960s and suspended 4th chords were becoming more common and they didn't resolve.
I agree with the deleted answer of pied piper: the note E is resolving to D. The chord note B is irrelevant. We can hear this as changing tone or like a suspension.
There are many songs that contain this motif like when man loves a woman (Percy Sledge) or Hello (Lionel Richie). It has a touch of pentatonic, like in many spirituals.
But like others say: why has a suspension to resolve? Why discuss popsongs like a classic piece? You could go on and ask: should this suspension not be prepared?
As in other comments and answers: there is no mandate that a suspension resolve (or that it be "prepared"). Further, there is no mandate in this example even to interpret the situation as a suspension: there are several plausible functional interpretations.
More blatant unresolved suspensions, that play more a role of suspended-something, appear in James Taylor's music. In some examples, everything is a sus chord! :)
It's not really a suspension since the E is a non-chordal tone in the first chord, but it's similar to a suspension, and it does resolve, to the D. The fact that there is a B between is irrelevant. Remember this is a pop song, not classical harmony.
Pop music generally doesn't need to resolve suspensions, so there's no special name for one that's unresolved.