Questions tagged [harmony]

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

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52 views

Avoid Notes in scales [closed]

In my understanding, an 'avoid note' in the context of a scale is practically a particular note we should not play , for example during an improvisation, because of the clash (minor 9th interval) it ...
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1answer
95 views

Does this sharp under the chord mean to play a major chord?

The source is p.95 in... Plain-Song (Helmore, Thomas) https://imslp.org/wiki/Plain-Song_(Helmore%2C_Thomas) ...and the particular sharp is this one highlighted in yellow... It confusing, because ...
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3answers
75 views

Using an augmented chord to modulate to a distant key, will this work?

So, in the same piece for which I asked about how to notate my 2 layered staccato, I'm halfway through writing the piece and I feel like I want to modulate again. Here are my modulations so far: E ...
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6answers
1k views

What makes the tonic the tonic and when do I know it changed?

What makes a note the tonal center of a scale other than forcing the listener to come from and go back to the selected note as the center? Or is that what makes that note the tonal center? Also at ...
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2answers
84 views

Why is the tonic so important for melodies?

I made a simple melody in FL studio that was in C Major. The melody consisted of two phrases both of which started on D. The only difference between the two is the second phrase ended on C (the tonic ...
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4answers
78 views

Playing the same melody over different chord progressions

I'm considering a structure of the following sort for a jazz/rock fusion song: Section A: 2-bar instrumental guitar line repeated a couple of times over a chord progression like C-G-C-G, followed by ...
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3answers
103 views

Is the C chord here C minor or C major?

I’m composing a funeral march and I have noticed that just from looking at the bass, the C chord is ambiguous. The piece is in the key of F minor. That doesn’t really help because both C minor and C ...
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7answers
2k views

With what chords do we modulate from Em to G?

In this version they modulate from Em to G by the chords Em-D-G? Is there a better way of doing it?
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1answer
69 views

Substitution of minor chord for major VI chord

I came up with this progression while trying to make a song that involves guitar arpeggios and string sections: Em Cm Em/B C6 Em C B-B+ Cm6 (Em/B I mean with a chord inversion and B-B+ I mean half ...
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1answer
71 views

What can I call these sustained tones, under which the harmony changes but does not create dissonance?

In an analysis of Haydn's "Piano Variations in F minor" my student has used the term "pedals" to describe the first 3 Es of the piece in the top line/right hand...and also the 3 Fs at the end of bar 2....
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2answers
123 views

Is the Descending Fifths sequence also an Ascending Fourths sequence ? Who is the original source of this sequence?

Can the Descending Fifths sequence also be correctly named as an Ascending Fourth's sequence ? in major : I - IV - vii dim - iii - vi - ii - V - I Is Johann Pachelbel (1653-1706) and his Canon in D ...
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1answer
82 views

Why is the sixth sometimes considered a dissonance which needs preparation?

I'm currently reading F. A. Gore Ouseley's Treatise on Harmony, which is a nice book from which to learn common-practice harmony (from a mid-19th century perspective). However, I'm a bit baffled by ...
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3answers
93 views

Why do we use geometric Progression?

It seems what's important in the progression of the frequencies in notes is...the difference in frequency of any two notes is not the same, but the ratio between any two notes of the same distance is ...
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1answer
87 views

Why were the frequencies for notes chosen?

I understand that the first note of each octave is twice the frequency of the first note from the octave before, but how are the frequencies for each note chosen subsequently after that. So far, I’ve ...
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1answer
56 views

Transcriptions that (more) directly relate to physical frequencies

Where can I view not traditional Western cleff based transcriptions of music, but rather ones that map directly to the physical differences in pitch being written down? So instead of something based ...
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1answer
113 views

Ranking Diatonic Chords by Stability [closed]

So in functional harmony there are 3 categories. Tonic, Predominant and Dominant. The following are the chord numbers that belong to each category.. Tonic = 1, 3 and 6 chords. Predominant = 2 and 4 ...
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1answer
80 views

Chord Scale Voice leading question for guitarists

I've recently been practicing voice leading chord scales, trying to keep the bass note within a range of 2-3 frets, playing through all the diatonic 7th chords in a scale. So ill start off in say, ...
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2answers
67 views

Are these suspensions or appoggiaturas in Haydn's Surprise Symphony?

The IB Revision Guide states that there are suspensions in the bars below (top line, violin 1). The bass harmony moves from C to F. The first 2 notes of the third bar in the violin B - A form tension ...
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6answers
100 views

Roman Numerals for minor chord progression E.g. Am F C G [closed]

Quick question, Take the progression Am F C G Would the correct way of writing this in Roman Numerals be i VI III VII Or vi IV I V Thanks
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1answer
78 views

What is the internal harmony of this Liszt melody?

This is an exercise taken out of Walter Piston’s Harmony (4th ed). Let me know how you would change my progression. Thanks!
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1answer
89 views

Available Tensions vs. (Non-)Diatonic Non Chord Tones

In, for example, the C major key, the available tensions for the C major seventh chord are 9, 13, because: Harmony 3 - Berklee, Barrie Nettles, p17: For diatonic chord progressions, available ...
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2answers
89 views

Does anyone know what mode or key this is? [closed]

Does anyone know what mode or key this is? It ends on A and it seems a bit minor. It could be Dorian with Do on G. It seems very much like some kind of Gregorian melody and it doesn't even have a ...
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2answers
139 views

Two types of chromatic chord progressions?

Sometimes chromatic progressions seem to just shift a chord a certain amount of semi-tones with no regards to the scale like chromatic mediants and chromatic planing, chromatic alterations, etc. But ...
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2answers
84 views

Is this an acceptable way to resolve a vii° chord?

In a choral-style piece I am writing, someone said that this vii° chord (within a phrase) never resolves properly. I would be grateful if anyone could give me some advice about whether it works or not,...
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4answers
428 views

Harmony, lead and backing, notes outside the chord

Okay so perfectly happy with the principle playing of say a straightforward major chord and playing a notes of that chord over the top of it. Also happy with the idea of playing say a more dissonant ...
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2answers
116 views

How to analyse a song arrangement

I am analysing an arrangement of "Over the RainBow", arranged by Walter Rodriguez: Looking at his musical score (not at what he is actually playing), the first chord ...
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0answers
77 views

Why harmonize non-diatonic notes with major 3rds above, in a “minor key” context?

I just got a TC Quintessence harmony pedal, and I was surprised to learn how it creates third-above harmony notes when set to the natural minor scale. The idea of the effect pedal is to create harmony ...
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5answers
224 views

What's the point of diatonicism if we don't follow it? [closed]

I'm 2 years into music theory. Today, in class, I was part writing in the key of Cm. When I got to the V7 chord, I was corrected because I wrote a Gm7 (Vm7). Now, I'm aware that the V chord in a major/...
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1answer
61 views

How to convert from one mode to the other? [closed]

I have no idea how modes work atm, I'm pretty competent everywhere else in theory, but I struggle with modes. Is it at all possible to convert modes? like from minor to phrygian? and what would be ...
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4answers
87 views

How is this basso continuo if it has only two voices?

Bwv anh 114 is based on two-part harmony. I have heard that this is bassically just basso continuo. How is this basso continuo if it has only two voices? The books on basso continuo talk about four-...
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4answers
109 views

Cadence I V I IV

This cadence with inversion is correct: key Gmajor G - D/F# - G/B - C? I have a doubt with the line of bass
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2answers
65 views

Applying schemata to chords other than I IV V

I have been reading up on Galant schemata (stock melodic phrases) recently and have run into a question regarding their universality. All of the various schemas (Prinner, Pastorale, Fenaroli, etc) ...
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2answers
1k views

Expanding the I-IV progression

I wanted to make the I-IV progression a little more interesting by having the I fall a third to its relative minor, vi, before moving to IV (so, I-vi-IV). I do like the melodramatic I-vi progression, ...
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2answers
125 views

Singing a C# over a F chord

I'm writing a song and suddenly I noticed I'm singing a C♯ over an F major chord. It sounds good (I suppose), but I'm a bit worried about the tension. I know it's common to sing the minor third over ...
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2answers
157 views

What is the difference between the Romantic and post-romantic periods?

This question came about when I was reading Blair Allen Johnston’s dissertation, ‘Harmony and Climax in the late works of Sergei Rachmanioff’ He loosely groups the post romantic period within 1890-...
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4answers
541 views

harmony with 24 note scales

has anyone tried writing music with 24 notes in the scale? so for each of the usual 12 notes an extra note is inserted between it and the next one 1 semitone above. I don't understand why people stop ...
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2answers
102 views

Progression of major triads on minor thirds

The notes of a diminished 7th chord form a 'circle of minor thirds'. I've noticed that some composers modulate through one or more major triads built on successive minor thirds, e.g. major triads on ...
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2answers
86 views

Is it possible to stick too closely to Mozart in an arrangement?

One of the many musical things I do is arrange pieces by other composers. As far as composers go, the easiest for me to arrange is Mozart(probably because of a combination of early and sustained ...
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2answers
79 views

Chromatic Mediant modulation: Can I use an omnibus progression for this?

So, I am composing a piece representing winter and I am right in the middle of the piece (the piece is in Rondo form and I'm at the C section). I started off in E major, then after being in the ...
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2answers
223 views

Tritone substitution in minor, just change the root or change the chord quality too?

Recently I've been practicing rootless ii V i in minor jazz from Jerry Coker's Jazz Keyboard. Here is the rootless chord chart... Unless I missed something in the booklet, Coker doesn't ...
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2answers
116 views

How to improvise over sixth chord in minor scale

Let's say I have this melody on the lead keyboard : Over that melody, I play the chords F#m, E, C#m, D#m. I'm not actually sure D#m is called a major 6th chord here. If I play this melody on the ...
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4answers
123 views

Does a drone create harmony?

I noticed there's no typical harmony (chords, etc) in Scotland the Brave but rather there's three elements: a drone on B-flat, the melody, and the drums. So is a ...
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2answers
92 views

Do extended suspended chords higher than ninth (9sus*) exist?

There are extended suspended chords, essentially suspended chords with added tones higher than the 5th degree of a scale. The only extended sus chords I know are 7sus2 (C-D-G-Bb), 7sus4 (C-F-G-Bb), ...
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4answers
340 views

Diminished seventh cadence, is this an IAC or a PAC?

I have seen a few cadences where the only dominant function chord used cadentially is a diminished seventh, mainly resolving to root position tonic, though I have seen a few resolve to an inverted ...
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4answers
145 views

What is the name of this chord? (Csus2+4)

The chord, is a Csus2+4 combination without the perfect fifth. The inversions are Dm7 (without fifth) and F5 (with major sixth). WhatI want to know is the name of this chord?
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5answers
734 views

How should I analyze this passage? As vii°7, V7, or both?

So, I'm doing another Beethoven analysis, this time using the Liszt transcription of Beethoven's Fifth so that I can more easily see the harmonies and form. I am analyzing it passage by passage, first ...
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8answers
1k views

Is harmony based on intervals rather than chords?

I understand this to be true: chords are basically just intervals. Our modern way of thinking about harmony is based on thinking about chords rather than intervals. This seems wrong. It seems like we'...
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2answers
354 views

Is Twinkle twinkle little star based on a drone/bourdon?

Is Twinkle twinkle little star based on a drone/bourdon? If you say no then what is it based on?
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1answer
84 views

Function of Minor sixth chords

What are the precise harmonic functions of the Minor sixth chord? I remember that I read somewhere that they play often the role of the I degree in a chord progression (like the often used 6/9 chord) ...
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4answers
149 views

Diminished 7th notation, match the key or key signature?

I'm planning on using a diminished 7th to modulate out of Eb minor and into Eb major. I'm thinking of using this diminished 7th or one of its enharmonic equivalents: This chord could then resolve to ...

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