Questions tagged [harmony]

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

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3
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4answers
140 views

Why do you think many people are drawn to a tonal center?

so im trying to answer this question for my music teacher and i'm trying to do research of it, but she hasn't been very specific with the question...any help?
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2answers
142 views

What makes Beethoven’s False Picardy Third so convincing?

So, there’s one aspect of Beethoven’s style that I personally, haven’t been able to write convincing examples of. That would be the False Picardy Third. To clarify, this is what I mean by False ...
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5answers
177 views

Does there exist a way of notating ones own harmonic language?

It's quite clear to most that certain artists have a distinct sound. While a lot of it may be down to production elements and instrument choice, there can really be no denying that their personal ...
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2answers
92 views

Isn't more comfortable to play Cmaj7 chord's root position 1245 instead of 1235 fingers on piano?

As I saw in Youtube and in various websites that Cmaj7 root fingering should be 1235, but for me it would look like more logical to play 1245. Because when I play on RH 1235, my wrist goes to left. ...
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1answer
99 views

How to complete a scale harmonization using Quantz' Versuch

In Quantz, Versuch einer Anweisung die Flöte traversiere zu spielen several harmonic/melodic skeletons are presented as the basis of melodic embellishment. Here are four which cover significant ...
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1answer
89 views

How to know if I sing in tune? [duplicate]

I try to sing and to hear my records but I don't know if I sing almost in tune or completely out of tune? How would I know? I will show you several records, can you give me points to improve on? ...
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4answers
92 views

Help naming/analyzing sus chord and possible secondary dominant

I'm having trouble figuring out how to name the chord in the third measure below. I initially guessed G7sus2 which would make a recognizable IV-V-I cadence, but then I am unsure how to analyze the ...
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8answers
3k views

Making Sense of Blues Soloing; differentiating major/minor pentatonics

Quarantine has allowed ample time for musical exploration. I'm a classically trained pianist studying music in college, and I'm using this extra time to be immersed in and learn how to play the blues. ...
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1answer
137 views

Writing down chord names and understanding their function in an example

I've been trying to learn more about music theory by transcribing songs. I am not bad at writing down the notes, but have a lot of trouble understanding the chords/harmony. Below is a sketch of one ...
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1answer
38 views

Minor Harmony doubts [duplicate]

I've tried written a little chorale in four parts using minor harmony (Bb minor). Established that for sure I have done several harmonic errors in terms of parts motion in the sense of traditional ...
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1answer
38 views

Little minor parts motion exercise (Exercise 1 from chapter 4 Piston)

I’m studying some minor harmony and I’ve done this little exercise with all chords in root position My question is: since In a minor setting you have multiple choices about triads (whether you are ...
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1answer
68 views

Adding tension to V7 chord

I understand that the V7 chord contains two tendency tones (^4 and ^7), which for a tritone in major keys. The ^4 forms a dissonance with the bass and the ^7 tends strongly to move to ^8. For these ...
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2answers
111 views

Help with understanding the theory behind this chord progression - James Blunt

I cannot find an answer to some of the chord relations that are present in this song, so any assistance would be great! Particularly in reference to the harmony and theory behind the progression. The ...
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1answer
262 views

Counterpoint with more than 4 parts

In Rachmaninoff Prelude in B Minor Op. 32 No. 10 I've noticed that not all voices are 4 parts. In fact I've noticed that in 19th century and 20th century music there's more than 4 parts in a harmony. ...
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1answer
81 views

Harmony analysis of Bach's first prelude?

I am currently trying to analyze the harmony in Bach's first prelude from the first book of the Well-Tempered Clavier. To do this, I identify the chords, the inversions, borrowed chords, the melody, ...
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5answers
424 views

Can an Augmented triad be called a Quartal chord?

Since a Quartal chord can be defined as diminished, perfect or augmented fourths, can an augmented triad be analysed as a quartal chord with stacked diminished fourths enharmonically? Also is the ...
4
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1answer
107 views

Stepwise bass movement/intermediate (passing) harmony technique

A song I like adds great motion to an otherwise simple progression by adding passing tones in the bass line, leaving the other harmonies unaltered. Please see the following transcription: Does this ...
5
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1answer
219 views

Is this cross relationship of the seventh degree in minor key harmony OK for 18th century style?

Some background. The following is from Gjerdingen, Music in the Galant Style, it's a kind of harmonic sequence called a monte. I'm using it for a model... ...to make a piano drill using full octave ...
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2answers
87 views

How did counterpoint, harmonic rhythm, and thoroughbass interact in the late-Baroque instrumental fugal style?

It may be considered common knowledge that frequent root changes, i.e., a fast harmonic rhythm, usually cause a piece to be perceived as being more purely "harmonic" and less polyphonic in nature. (...
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1answer
74 views

is fourth to fifth in parallel motion permittable in satb?

I am currently working out some SATB composition and I am wondering a bit about the alto-tenor part. There is fourth to fifth in parallel motion in the first measure. Is this permitted in strict SATB?...
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2answers
89 views

How does reharm work in jazz

Ive heard a lot about reharminzation however i am kinda confused now because it appears as though you can basically reharmonize any note with a chord as long as the chord fits that note. Which i ...
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4answers
129 views

The initial phrase in Mozart's Alla Turca

In the initial phrase, if I just saw the melody, I would have been sure that, in the third full measure, the melody switches to (V). Yet the accompaniment stays firmly in (i) and it sounds great. Does ...
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3answers
262 views

Chromatic parallel six-three chords

I am trying to follow Aldwell and Schachter’s analysis of Chopin’s Impromptu, Op. 29. I wanted to learn about chromatic voice leading techniques, but I ended up getting stuck simply with their ...
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2answers
95 views

How exactly do the rules of traditional voice leading apply to broken chords?

In Gore Ouseley's Treatise on Harmony (p. 194 of the 1868 edition), the author states: When chords are broken, care must be taken, first, that every note requiring any fixed progression or ...
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2answers
199 views

Advice for a budding musician trying to understand composition and music theory

So I have been producing music for around 2 years now, and am an avid listener to many genres of music. I have never been taught music or music theory, but used youtube to get a fundamental albeit ...
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9answers
7k views

Why does Bach sometimes end with flat 7ths?

I've been studying the Bach inventions, and I see a common patterns in the first 3 inventions: They tend to include the flat 7ths in the very end. Examples: C major: D major: E♭ major: From a ...
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1answer
98 views

Why does this chord sound like a very tense C minor when it isn't spelt like C minor at all?

So I have listened to Gustav Holst's The Planets before, especially the first movement, Mars. And in Mars I hear an outright rhythmic and harmonic war. And at the ending I hear a lot of tense C chords ...
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2answers
68 views

Is functional harmony considered homophonic?

Sorry if this is an obvious question, but I just want to clear this up. As far as I understand about voice leading, there are essentially two main types. Homophony and polyphony. Functional harmony ...
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2answers
188 views

Why is the false relation of the tritone objectionable in V-IV but less so in IV-V?

In strict counterpoint, it is forbidden to have a B in one voice and then, in the very next chord, an F in another voice, or vice versa. This is called the false relation of the tritone. George John ...
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3answers
136 views

What determines the function of a chord?

I’ve been trying to learn about functional harmony and I keep asking myself the above question. Each chord seems to have a general function (with exceptions) within scales, but why is that so? Were ...
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1answer
79 views

Associating modulations with emotions

I once read a book (pdf) from imslp or forgottenbooks that was about composition (or harmony), and it had a list of every possible modulation and its emotional association. For example, Up a perfect ...
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2answers
249 views

What is wrong with this homemade modes chart? [closed]

What may you see right or wrong with this homemade modes chart? This chart is supposedly read vertically. There are definitely some parts I don’t understand I’m just wondering about if it’s Accuracy.
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1answer
328 views

Help with non-diatonic chords in All the Things You Are

The harmony for All the Things You Are seems mostly straightforward, but I'm stuck on a few bars struggling to see where the following non diatonic chords come from. The chords are: C+7 in bar 24, D♭...
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4answers
390 views

Why is vi6 (submediant chord in first inversion) rarely used?

I read that vi6 is almost completely absent – is there a reason for this?
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4answers
629 views

Why is ii6 always used instead of ii?

I've noticed in ii-V-I that it is almost always ii6-V-I or ii6/5-V-I. Why is this the case? Should the descending fifth in the bass of ii-V be a very strong progression?
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1answer
100 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 ...
4
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1answer
277 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
206 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
2k 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
234 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
407 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
117 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
90 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
124 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
401 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
89 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
107 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
173 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 ...
3
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1answer
59 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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