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I'm wondering if this song is in F major, various websites seem to think it is. It seems to have the notes of F major, but why does it sound so sad? Is it a mode, or maybe it's just D minor? How can you tell?

edit: I noticed it sounds similar to Greene's cycle of fourths progression. So maybe this is just a cycle of fourths?

closed as off-topic by Dom Nov 17 '18 at 16:11

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Countless times, people here have stated that sad doesn't equal minor, or vice versa. Making the counter: it's major, so it can't sound sad...

There's a few major sevenths in there, and when you consider that the top three notes on their own produce a minor sounding harmony, maybe that's what makes it sound sad - to you!

Wistful may be more apposite, or maybe pensive, it's pretty subjective...

Don't feel it's Dm either, although that harmony does present itself at some point. But why shouldn't it?

  • I'm starting to think it's in D minor, since the progression goes: iv III iiº i. – foreyez Nov 17 '18 at 15:34
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    C dominant 9th doesn't usually lead to anything except F. – Tim Nov 17 '18 at 15:45
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Firmly in F major I think. It visits a Dm chord a few times, but doesn't linger. All the cadential points head for F major, even though some of them swerve off to the subdominant then round the cycle of 5ths again!

Like @Tim says, you may be hearing the Fmaj7 chords as 'sad'.

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