Questions tagged [harmony]

For questions about the "vertical" aspects of music and how to build and study them.

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2answers
3k views

Harmonizing with 3rd Voice

I have recorded a vocal for my music. Now I want to pitch my vocal, as to also have a 3rd harmonizing vocal. I have heard a lot that people say that a 3rd voice is the best voice and sweetest one for ...
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3answers
589 views

Why do intervals sound “better” or “worse” depending on distance?

Why do chords usually "sound better" to the human ear when using larger intervals between low notes and, smaller intervals between high notes? Is it how the ear and brain register the harmonics?
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2answers
93 views

How do I work out the chords in Rachmaninoff op 23 No7

In this piece Rachmaninoff's writing is very chromatic. It is very hard to distinguish what notes should be considered as part of the functional harmony and what are passing chromatic notes. I have ...
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7answers
2k views
+50

Exactly what does “diatonic” mean?

Is the meaning very context dependent, or can it be defined in general terms? Does the meaning change by author or period? Sometimes it's used to refer to anything that stays within a specific tonal ...
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6answers
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How to name two-note chords (dyads)?

Is there a convention about how to name two-note chords? I noticed that software like Apple Logic Pro names two-note chords like this: Db C = Db no 3 ma7 C Eb = Cm So I'm assuming the dynamic for ...
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8answers
2k views

Using chord iii in a chord progression (major key)

I haven't come across music as yet where chord iii is used in a chord progression. I read somewhere that generally chord iii is not used, or very rarely used. Is this correct? If chord iii is used, ...
2
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5answers
17k views

How do you write a corresponding bassline for an already written melody?

In my music theory class I have created a 16-measure melody, and have now been instructed by my teacher to create a corresponding bass-line for that melody. (I scored an 88% on my melody, so I assume ...
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0answers
37 views

What are the characteristics of Late Romantic Russian Music?

I've been recently listening to some late Romantic Russian music (Lyapunov, Kalinnikov, Tchaikovsky, etc.) and was wondering how best to mimic this style. So far, I've observed a handful of shared ...
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1answer
88 views

When does one omit the fifth in V7 chord in classical harmony?

The textbooks on classical harmony that I have read (Leo Semlek, "Klassikalise harmoonia lühiõpik" ["A Short Textbook on Classical Harmony"] and "Klassikalise harmoonia õpik" ["A Textbook on Classical ...
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2answers
64 views

What is this chord in Haydn's Symphony No. 94?

Can anyone tell me what chord is in bar 115 of the attached image, and how it relates to the key of F minor (just edited, accidentally said F# minor at first) (which is also the subsequent chord)? It ...
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4answers
59 views

Why can't a fugue begin on the mediant?

I've seen in a few places that the subject of a fugue begins on either the tonic (first degree) or dominant (fifth degree). From what I've read, the stated reason is that the answer (a transposed ...
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4answers
52k views

What is the correct process for deriving the 'mirror' or 'negative' harmony of a progression?

I recently stumbled upon the concept of negative harmony in these threads: https://www.talkbass.com/threads/negative-harmony.533862/#post7227335 http://www.jazzguitar.be/forum/theory/30394-negative-...
3
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3answers
128 views

What is the harmonic function of a Eb/F in the Dm tonality?

What is the function of the Eb/F chord. How does it relate to the Dm harmonic field? The question comes from 0:30 time at Thank you
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6answers
9k views

Prokofiev's style

I have a predilection for music from the first half of the 20th century. I can't pinpoint the exact reason why, I suspect it is from absorbing so much music from movies, tv series and computer games ...
0
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2answers
66 views

Should we end phrygian and hypo phrygian on a major chord?

I saw an organ accompaniment in phrygian (or hypophrygian) (E as finalis). The last chord was C major. Should we end phrygian and hypoohrygian on a major chord?
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5answers
559 views

Jazz Chords: How can a Bbmaj9 be explained in the key of A major?

I'm looking at the sheet music for the song Sometimes in Winter: https://www.noteflight.com/marketplace/4V9yWpCsl2ktvMaaOd0Tgh/sometimes-in-winter It appears this tune is in A Major. In the 3rd bar, ...
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3answers
88 views

Measuring key-relatedness of chords on the circle of fifths

Is there an easy way to visualise scale-degree triads for a given key, based on the circle of fifths? And to also use the circle to 'measure' how distant a given out-of-key chord is to our home key? I ...
5
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3answers
141 views

How to determine the degree to which diminished seventh chords and half-diminished seventh chords belong in major scales?

I would like to know how to determine to which degree belongs diminished seventh chords and half-diminished seventh chords in major scales, and which function do they exert. As the fully diminished ...
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3answers
65 views

Arranging K 545 for a string quartet, how to write the harmony part

So, I am trying a second time to arrange K 545 for a string quartet. I think my second draft is better harmonically speaking than my previous attempt to arrange the same sonata. But there is a whole ...
5
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1answer
148 views

Intro of A Whiter Shade of Pale: is my analysis of chords correct?

I wonder about 2 points in this intro (I can ask them in to different questions if desired) I'm not sure whether I hear this progression correct ... The beginning ...
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5answers
3k 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 ...
3
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2answers
342 views

What is the difference between diminished fifth and augmented fourth? [duplicate]

Are diminished fifth and augmented fourth the same intervals? They both consist of six semi-tones but why do they have different names?
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4answers
98 views

What is this chord in Grande Valse Brilliante?

The chord circled in red is what I am asking about. I know that in the measure before, there is a diminished seventh chord. I'm certain that this is a dominant function chord(or at least, locally to ...
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3answers
80 views

How do I play Gmaj7-Bm7(b5)-E7(b9)-Am9 with jazz shell voicings?

In classical harmony. V7-I has the 7th leading to the 3rd of the next chord and the 3rd leading to the 1. In certain jazz harmony the third stays on the 3rd and becomes a 7 of the next chord. In ...
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1answer
105 views

How are the notes organized on a tongue drum?

Disclaimer: I don't now much about music theory. Anyway, my wife just bought one of those, which I think is called a "tongue drum": What strikes me is that, as bad as I am at playing music, whatever ...
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3answers
81 views

Shell voices - what does it mean?

I’ve tried to answer a question about voicings in Jazz. I was not sure if it was concerning a 4 part or unlimited part voicing. Now I’ve seen that I’ve overlooked in the title of the question the ...
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1answer
353 views

How would you explain the A natural in bar 11?

How would you explain the A natural in bar 11? How would you explain that the phrase ends in bar 11 and not bar 12?
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4answers
437 views

Characteristic scale degrees

Came across an article at openMsicTheory.com about harmonic function. Below excerpt was about finding function of a chord Each of the three harmonic functions — tonic (T), subdominant (S), and ...
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2answers
564 views

What are the diatonic extended chords of C major?

I saw this question about 9ths, but I'd like to know what the diatonic chords of 11ths and 13ths as well. This isn't strictly for jazz, I just want to know what the basic diatonic chords are. I'm ...
5
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3answers
158 views

How would this chord from “I'll See You In My Dreams” best be analyzed?

In the song "I'll See You In My Dreams", there is a chord progression that I really love. I'm wondering if there is a "best" way to analyze one of the chords. The song is in the key of F Major, and ...
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6answers
3k views

What chord does C, E, G♭ , and B♭ make?

You can use whatever note, but we can use C. Unfortunately, I don't know what the root position would be in this case, so I will lay them out as positions. I used intervals, too. Position 1: Root, ...
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2answers
1k views

Harmonizing Bourrée in E minor

Out of interest and just to give myself practice in part-writing, I've been trying to harmonize the popular Bach Bourrée in E minor from his lute suite. It only has two voices, so there is a lot of ...
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10answers
3k views

If equal temperament divides an octave into 12 equal parts, why are the hertz differences not the same but 12ths of two?

Let's take a 440Hz A pitch and the 880Hz A an octave higher. If we divide space between 440Hz and 880Hz into 12 equal parts, we would have: [440Hz, 476.6, 513.2 ... 880Hz.] And this looks ...
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2answers
193 views

Calculate tonal tension of triads

I'm trying to implement and calculate the tonal tension of a triad (and its harmonics) following the definition given here: https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/f05e/56c9548fa18c64efeed248742e3a6afb0c02....
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2answers
131 views

How can I reproduce this harmony?

In Bury Me by Bayside at about 3:09 (the line that starts with "I want your respect..."), they use a strange dissonant-sounding harmony: time stamped youtube link. It sounds to me like he's using 3 ...
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1answer
81 views

How to use “synthetic modes”

Im having trouble understanding a concept in Persichetti’s book 20th century harmony (Page 43) where he introduces new scales he calls synthetic scales. Just before that he talks about the church ...
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2answers
53 views

Hindemith's Traditional harmony Book 1, Chapter II, rule 1

I recently started working my way through Hindemith's Traditional harmony Book 1 on my own. The instructions are short and simple, but sometimes too much so for a self-learner. I have reached ...
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3answers
402 views

Secondary dominants

I saw this progression as an example on an article about secondary dominants: C Am B7 C Is the idea here to have B7 as the dominant of E which is the dominant of Am?
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3answers
386 views

Can the leading note resolve down?

Would like to ask if the leading tone in chord V (G) could resolve downwards to Eb (fifth of chord I)? I’ve somehow recall reading that the rule (leading note MUST resolve to tonic) only applies to ...
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8answers
334 views

Dominant seventh vs Dominant function [duplicate]

I saw how in the major scale the diatonic functions are: I - tonic IV - subdominant V - dominant and the V7 is called a dominant seventh Also in the natural minor scale the diatonic functions are: ...
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3answers
144 views

Why do I hear a major key lament bass in Bach's Chaconne in D minor?

I noticed as I listen to Bach's Chaconne in D minor, that not only do I hear a lament bass when Bach is in D minor but also when he is in D major. But why? It isn't like the lament bass is normally ...
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2answers
60 views

Augmented triad in Pathetique Sonata? How does it function?

I analyzed the harmony of the Pathetique Sonata as you already know, but one thing about the harmony in the first movement made me curious. No, not unconfirmed modulation or anything like that. No, it ...
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2answers
699 views

“Push chord”. What's that?

I came across this post the other day that referenced a "push chord". What does "push chord" mean in that context? Is that a term specific to Bossa Nova (a latin jazz genre), or is it just a term I ...
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2answers
195 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 ...
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2answers
97 views

Modulation from D major to D minor, should I go sudden or gradual?

I am composing a Scherzo in the key of D major and I have the first section of my Scherzo already written down. Now I'm into the second section of the Scherzo that precedes the Trio. And in this ...
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2answers
54 views

What books do keyboard students use when learning figured bass? [closed]

What books do keyboard students use when learning figured bass? Are there any standard books ttat is being used by students?
9
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2answers
181 views

Where is the circle of fifths mentioned for the first time?

How and when was the Circle of Fifths invented, and who is responsible for the discovery of this musical godsend?
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1answer
89 views

Examples of composers and pieces heavily using four-part harmony [closed]

As I am currently deeply involved in studying four-part harmony, I am interested to know some examples of composers and pieces, which heavily use the rules of four-part harmony and not wildly (...
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2answers
89 views

Doubling in dominant seventh

In four-part harmony only the root tone can be doubled in dominant seventh chord ("Guide to harmony" - Tchaikovsky). Why, what is the reasoning behind it? I am interested only from classical harmony ...
2
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1answer
62 views

How can we play a Bach chorale in different ways? [closed]

Reconstructing Chorales: How can Bach Chorales be arranged or played differently? Are there typical kinds of harmonization named by criteria? What would be the effects? Some styles will be better ...