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The so-called Andalusian cadence occurs when one harmonizes the descending tetrachord from tonic down to dominant with I–♭VII–♭VI–V.

Yet the progression ♭VI–♭VII–I seems just as common. It's especially common right after a V chord, because V moves to ♭VI deceptively and then moves by step up to tonic. This ends up creating the exact retrograde of the Andalusian cadence: V–♭VI–♭VII–I.

Is there a name for this latter progression?

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    Wow, I never realised that was the retrograde of the andalusian cadence! – user45266 Feb 23 at 20:40
  • Do you mean for the tonic chord to be a lower case 'i' for a minor tonic or 'I' for a major tonic? The Andalusian progession would use a minor 'i', but you used upper case which typically means major. – Michael Curtis Feb 23 at 21:04
  • @MichaelCurtis In my experience, tonic is often major. But for the purposes of this question, tonic can be major or minor. – Richard Feb 23 at 21:07
  • I had a theory teacher who called it the "le te do" ending referring to the solfege syllables, but I don't know if that is standard. – Peter Feb 28 at 4:39
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I've commonly heard this called the "Super Mario Brothers" progression, named for its nearly infamous use in the original Super Mario Brothers game when a level was beaten. That seems nonstandard, but it's the only name I've ever heard for it, and any musician who hears that name knows exactly what chords to play. If you need something to call this progression, this is the standard choice, as ridiculous as that sounds. This isn't the only time I've heard this used; I believe it's very widespread, and thus essentially almost a name.

Flagpole Fanfare

That piece of music has also been repeatedly quoted and paraphrased throughout the entire Mario franchise. Of course, the progression itself has been used in plenty of other contexts, and it sounds quite nice.

EDIT: I'm not making this up, I now have a source!

And also at 7:00, 12 Tone discusses the opposite of the Andalusian Cadence! How perfect!

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    If some said to me "super mario brothers" progression, I wouldn't have the slightest idea what they meant. – Michael Curtis Feb 23 at 20:57
  • @MichaelCurtis Huh. Well, I would, and a lot of people I know would. I guess it's not universal, but I stand by my answer, though. – user45266 Feb 24 at 5:24
  • Just because one person on youtube calls it a "Mario cadence" does not mean that's the correct terminology for it. There may not be an official name for it and then some may call it that due to it being the first example that comes to mind. If that's the case that's not really a name, but an example. – Dom Feb 28 at 4:55
  • This isn't the only time I've heard this used; I believe it's very widespread, and thus essentially almost a name. – user45266 Feb 28 at 5:11
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    @user45266 - By "This isn't the only time I've heard this used", do you mean the name or the cadence? The cadence is fairly common (I remember it most prominently in Waterflame's "Superwing Heroes"), but your answer is the first time I've seen it referred to with a name involving Super Mario Bros. – Dekkadeci Feb 28 at 6:16

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