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For example, let's take the common major progression of I-V-vi-IV chords. How would the feeling of the overall song differ if:

  • The vi chord was the first chord of the progression
  • The vi chord was the second chord of the progression
  • The vi chord was the resolving chord?

And on a similar vein, does only the placement of one chord change the vibe, or does the placement of all the chords matter (Again, I-V-vi-IV as an example)?

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    Time is relative. If you give us a simple progression like that, without any context (including the duration of each chord and how many times does it possibly repeat), the "base" context will be: 1. the first chord is the "down beat" - or maybe not?; 2. every chord has the same duration (or maybe not?!?). With a simple progression as yours, you're giving the listener complete freedom: we could even consider the "vi" chord as "ii", with a progression like IV-I-ii-I, with the downbeat on the second or fourth chord. Jun 21 at 2:26
  • Ahh okay, so rather than the actual chords, it depends more on the rhythm of it? I'm still a beginner, so I don't know quite a lot about rhythms. Any resources you can direct me to where I could learn more about this stuff?
    – IzzyDev
    Jun 21 at 2:57
  • time is everything in music: without time (and, obviously, time relations), music wouldn't exist, including music that is considered "timeless" - or "beatless". The point is that music is a extremely broad matter that is mostly based on the variation of events in time in multiple given context. Simply put, amount and frequency at given time positions and relations: how long some "sounds" last and/or how "strong" they are related to the others. And, even considering that, there are some ambiguities. Take for instance the Prelude from the Bach's E partita for violin. -> Jun 21 at 4:01
  • -> That piece has lots of rhythm challenges, and if you're not accustomed to it as a player (hence, after deeply studying, practicing it and understanding* it), you'll probably have some doubts about its rhythm, including harmonic relations. I suggest you to read this very interesting post and listen through its examples (even if you might not like some of them). The very concepts of time, beat and rhythm could be ambiguous, especially if not considered within the context of the whole piece. Jun 21 at 4:04
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    Have you tried all your suggestions? What did they do for you?
    – Tim
    Jun 21 at 7:03