Questions tagged [chord-voicings]

For questions on how to arrange the necessary chord tones among an instrument or ensemble. Some questions may also require the voice-leading tag.

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18
votes
5answers
4k views

What's an “add” chord?

The name implies that you are adding a note, but we already notate that explicitly in the chord name and quality. We say Cm7, not Cm add 7. If we want a 9th, we can go Cm9, but is Cm add 9 correct ...
15
votes
7answers
3k views

How do you voice extended chords?

If I have a Cmaj13 chord, it uses 7 notes. Basically all the notes of the scale. In a previous question, I was told that you rarely play all 7 notes for a 13th chord. So how do you know which ones to ...
11
votes
5answers
2k views

“Only open voicing below middle C!” Really?

Every resource I've seen and person I've talked to has said that putting low voices, usually trombones, in close spacing anywhere below C4 is to be avoided at all costs, due to muddiness. As I arrange,...
10
votes
6answers
3k views

How to determine passing chords

How do you determine passing chords from one chord to another, as I've seen how most gospel/jazz pianists do? So far, I am familiar with progressions such as the II-V-I as means to go from one chord ...
10
votes
3answers
739 views

13 Chord Voicing Without Root, 3rd or 5th

I've been improvising over Hoagy Carmichael's Heart and Soul and I came across a chord voicing that seemed a little strange to me. As shown below, the C13 is voiced F-Bb-D-A, using the 7th, 9th, 11th ...
9
votes
3answers
713 views

Jazz piano: chords and melody in right hand. How?

Aiming for being capable of playing solo and in ensemble, a jazz pianist is exposed to the following: Bass player is playing the root tones, hence the pianist can play rootless When playing alone or ...
8
votes
4answers
1k views

How to accompany with piano in latin music when given only chords?

Say we want to play piano and we know these things: We have a I-IV-V-I chord progression We we want to play a measure in C major (C-D-E-F-G-A-B) So if we look at I-IV-V-I in C major from the ...
8
votes
6answers
1k views

Does the voicing of a chord affect the name it's been given? If not, what does?

So I came across a YouTube video where the guy kept referring to a chord as Cm♭6 (C minor flat 6th). However, it seems to me that with a little rearranging this could also be written as a simple ...
8
votes
5answers
270 views

Is Alberti bass really a type of arpeggio?

When I hear the term "arpeggio", to me, it is much more specific than just a broken chord. A broken chord, obviously is any chord that isn't played as a block chord. This could mean anything from ...
7
votes
2answers
565 views

How to apply Barry Harris 6th diminished voicings and maintain chord functions?

The Barry Harris diminished 6th voicings are popular voicings in Jazz, often related to Bill Evans when using drop 2 's. In essence, these are harmonizations of the bebop scale using the I and V7b9 (...
6
votes
5answers
499 views

How to make the Bass in SATB move more smoothly?

While writing for SATB, I realise I have a few chords where the Bass part is moving down in intervals of 6ths or 7ths from one chord to the next. For example, I have a chord progression iib in F ...
6
votes
5answers
1k views

Sus2 doesn't exist?

On this stack post answer: Chord naming conventions: add2 versus add9 And on this website: https://www.brendanpauljacobs.com/spelling.htm The writers imply that sus2 chords actually do not exist. ...
6
votes
3answers
527 views

How to make 9th chords (and beyond) easier on ukulele?

The ukulele only has 4 strings. So if I were to want to make a 9th chord, is there an easier way than the way I've been trying? I've been doing things like 3-0-0-5 as a C9, which isn't too bad until ...
5
votes
4answers
263 views

Chord naming convention for repeated intervals

I keep seeing around the place that chord names shouldn't describe the voicing of a chord, but simply the intervals. If this is the case, why do the intervals ♭13, ♯11 and ♯9 exist? ...
5
votes
1answer
412 views

Does every chord have inversions?

I know triads and 7ths chords have inversions, and their inversions even have names(64, 6, 65, 42, etc.) My questions are: Do the triads' and 7th chords' inversion names also apply to non-major ...
5
votes
1answer
287 views

What should one keep in mind when writing the Neapolitan 6th chord in a chord progression?

So I have just started reading about the Neapolitan 6th, & I'm new to this topic. I know that it is generally used in its first inversion, & is often followed by chord V. Thus it is used in ...
4
votes
5answers
798 views

What's the difference in sound between the shell voicing of a minor 7th chord vs a half diminished 7th chord?

I am learning about shell voicings for 7th chords. I understand that you you remove the 5th because it makes no difference in the quality of the chord. That leaves me with Cmin7 being C Eb Bb C half ...
4
votes
2answers
321 views

Identifying “Drop chords” from a given voicing

I'm new to this concept of "drop chords" for guitar, and apparently other instruments as well. Well, I know about chord voicings in general, but not necessarily how the drop-n voicing system works. ...
4
votes
2answers
422 views

Improvising over quartal voicings

One particular jazz piano technique is to voice chords using quartal voicings. A quartal voicing is a chord built on fourths. For example, one might voice Cmin with the notes (in ascending order) F-B♭-...
4
votes
1answer
155 views

Tenor part written higher than the Alto part in SATB

I have read that Bach in his chorales wrote the tenor part high (frequently using ledger lines for this). Another source said that the Tenor part would be written higher than the Alto part - for ...
4
votes
1answer
154 views

Default left-hand piano voicing for Dbmaj7 Eb7-9 Abmaj7

I came across a lead sheet for a jazz tune ("Haunted Ballroom" by Victor Feldman) in which the following chord symbols appear: Dbmaj7 Eb7b9 Abmaj7 I am an amateur jazz saxophonist and a not so ...
4
votes
1answer
84 views

Stretching on Ukulele: How Far is Fair?

I've noticed that I play a lot of chords on ukulele with larger intervals in them, and often the chord voicings have big stretches from the lowest notes to the highest notes. Obviously, I know ...
4
votes
1answer
110 views

Ellington's Mood Indigo: clarinet voiced below trombone “never heard before”?

I'm writing a paper on the song 'Mood Indigo' by Duke Ellington, from 1930. It is known for its achingly beautiful sound, which is achieved via three-part harmony of trumpet, trombone, and clarinet. ...
4
votes
2answers
418 views

When using “Evans” jazz voicings what voicings should I use for half-diminished ii chord in minor and tritone substitution chords?

Below is a chart I made of the standard Evans A and B forms (which I have only seen in method books using major key harmony) and my own possibilities for voicings for half-diminished and tritone ...
4
votes
2answers
272 views

Do we hear bass/baritone solo melody lines as being implicitly “on top of” the accompaniment, for harmonic purposes

I admit that the title of the question sounds a little strange, but I wanted to posit a more general question based on a specific song I was looked at. I was looking at this arrangement of Chega de ...
3
votes
5answers
178 views

How do inversions of extended chords work?

I am trying to understand what is the main difference between inversions and voicings, The way I see it is that the inversion will establish the lowest note on a chord, while the voicing is the ...
3
votes
3answers
220 views

Transcribing Jazz Piano Chord Voicings

I have just started to play jazz piano after many years of classical piano and one of the big things I have to do as a jazz musician is to transcribe (by ear) famous jazz recordings. When I am ...
3
votes
4answers
93 views

Why can some 5ths be replaced with 6ths in an extended chord, but not all?

I want to get more comfortable playing a wider variety of chords voicings, so recently I've been playing around with lots of different chord progressions in my warmups. A pianist I like put out a ...
3
votes
1answer
88 views

Difference between iii/IV and vi in analysis?

I am trying to follow along this music theory video. The song analyzed is Merry Christmas Mr.Lawrence by Ryuichi Sakamoto. The main chord progression is IV - iii/IV - iii - vi - V7 My question is ...
3
votes
2answers
83 views

Is there a piano exercise to develop chord change/voicing proficiency? [closed]

I want to become better at playing chord charts and lead sheets, so was wondering if there are any exercises that target ones ability to shift between chords with lots of extensions, clustered ...
3
votes
1answer
105 views

What does the author mean in these examples of chorales & harmony?

This is an example in G major. I am learning about Bach's chorales & how he uses modulation. I came across a page online (choraleguide.com), & in one example given, I couldn't understand what ...
2
votes
3answers
350 views

Non-cadential use of 6/4 chord

I guess the 6-4 chord in common practice music is typically seen as a "cadential" 6-4, used to embellish the chords around it by means of bass arpeggiation. In rock music, however, a I chord in ...
2
votes
2answers
198 views

Jazz piano: improving voicings

I run into these two problems related to chords: My accompany with my left hand conflicts/try to occupy the same tones as my right hand, melody. My voicings are boring and dull. Very standardised and ...
2
votes
2answers
128 views

Arrangement of triad inversions [duplicate]

For any given triad there are six possible arrangements of the notes. For example: CEG, CGE, GEC, GCE, ECG, EGC Why are only three of them taken account of, ie. root, first and second inversions?
2
votes
1answer
112 views

What are voicings in jazz and how are they different from chord inversions?

I've began studying jazz and I came across to something called "voicings","drop 2 voicings", etc. To me, voicings seem like chord inversions but from what I've found online it seems to be something ...
2
votes
1answer
120 views

Rising Fourth/Descending Fifth bass movement in inversions

I understand that the sense of resolution is strongest with the root movement of a rising fourth/descending fifth. However, is the important thing that the chords be a fourth/fifth apart (i.e. Cmaj - ...
2
votes
1answer
58 views

Do descending drop chord voicings in the blues work?

Here are two well known descending chord patterns: Diatonic seventh chords. Sequence of dominant seventh chords. The voice leading is smooth in both and basically each voice just steps down to the ...
2
votes
1answer
127 views

Jazz piano: accompanying oneself

My goal is to be able to by ear play a jazz standard, with improv sections. When keeping an accompaniment in my left hand (say, a walking base or similar) while soloing with my right, then I stall. ...
2
votes
2answers
106 views

Is this voicing for Dmin7 right?

I am transferring a Basie chart into Finale. (A) For a 'Clean' copy and, (B) to study Frank Foster's process. The 'chart' in question is "Shiny Stockings". This is an ensemble passage where the ...
2
votes
1answer
99 views

Dictionary for Reverse Chord Lookup

I've been searching for some information regarding reverse chord lookup and various libraries that might help me with some software I'm writing. I've tried tonal.js and various other JS music theory ...
1
vote
4answers
1k views

barre chords versus power chords or simplified chords

I learned barre chords many years ago, when I was learning guitar. It seemed at the time there was no other option, or perhaps I never ran across other options. Now that I have taken up my guitar ...
1
vote
1answer
47 views

What percentage of the time did Bach and others use chord inversions in chorales?

I know the frequencies of his "Normal Fundamental Harmonic Progressions" i.e., the progression of chord roots. I'd like to know the percentage of time that he used 1st or 2nd inversions in his ...
1
vote
2answers
56 views

What is this chord in Schubert's D. 531?

Consider following extract from Schubert's Der Tod und das Mädchen (D. 531) : I assume that the indicated chord in the penultimate bar can be seen as a transition between the chords of D major and A ...
1
vote
3answers
147 views

chord voicing with arpeggiations and inversions

This question is in two parts. A) Assume the rules of 4-part harmony. Should the first note of an arpeggio be the one that is included in the chord for best sonority? For example, we are told, with ...
1
vote
2answers
113 views

Jazz: Getting a feel for chords/harmonies

I have played the violin for several years so I have fundamental knowledge in some areas, however chords are currently opaque. For instance, I can play the melody line for any jazz standard by ear ...
1
vote
1answer
114 views

A database of every guitar chord? [closed]

For a tool I'm developing, I'd like to have a database of all playable chords (and voicings) on guitar. "playable" would mean either : any position that the human with the biggest stretch ...
1
vote
1answer
48 views

Is there a certain way to voice chords for an orchestration?

I am new to composing, and I am working on a piece for an orchestra. Currently, I am working on the string section. I have four parts so far (violin, viola, cello, double bass). I am considering ...
1
vote
1answer
104 views

Is it ok to write a note of the same register in two voices (SATB)?

I want to know if this is allowed when writing for SATB. The chord is D/F#. The note D is of the same register, but repeated in the Alto & Tenor voices. Is this allowed in a music theory exam?
1
vote
2answers
441 views

How should I write a tutti chord?

Somebody commented on my Pathetique Sonata orchestration that it is all wrong and how it is wrong. Here I will focus on the part of the comment related to tutti chords. Here is the link to my ...
0
votes
2answers
99 views

What is the correct name for this chord?

C E D B Db F Here are some attempts at naming this chord from four separate conversion web apps: Dm9/13/C add(7) Cmaj9 (11,b9) Sorry, no matches found CM11 (b9,add9) I find it interesting how ...