Questions tagged [key]

For questions about key signatures, scales, modes and similar topics. Most questions should also be tagged with "theory".

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3
votes
2answers
62 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 ...
12
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9answers
2k views

How to figure out key from key signature?

I know the major scale formula so can easily work out the signature by building the scale from tonic, but I've never learnt it the other way... How to know the key/scale from the signature of sharps/...
2
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5answers
3k views

What is the key for “Purple Haze”?

I was looking at the sheet music for purple haze by Jimi Hendrix and I was pretty confused. The first two bars, and all over the song, has a LOT of accidentals. Then the root of the first chord was ...
1
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3answers
73 views

Does same mode have different mood or emotional quality in different keys? [closed]

Maybe it's subjective thing. But when you start playing same song in same mode (natural major for example), but from another key than original was. What will happend? You have two possiblities or ...
8
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2answers
458 views

Singing - effect of vowels on tuning and tonality

I am a multi-instrumentalist and singer-songwriter. Singing for me has been a long road but recently I found out something very interesting. I have a certain song that I am very fond of but I have ...
2
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3answers
546 views

Did Bach ever use melodic minor keys in chorales?

For example, E Melodic Minor would have C#, allowing for a ii7-V-I cadence.
16
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6answers
1k views

Do we have any particular tonal center in mind when we are NOT listening music?

Let say I sing or play song in C major. I feel that C note as home, or in other words, it has the quality of the tonic note for me. I stop playing the song. After 24 hours or any longer period, ...
15
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8answers
6k views

In a folk jam session, when asked which key my non-transposing chromatic instrument (like a violin) is in, what do I answer?

I know of transposing instruments. A transposing instrument is one where the player reads a C, plays a C, and what sounds is the name of the key of the instrument. Those instruments are often referred ...
44
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3answers
6k views

Why do instruments have a key?

There are many instruments that have keys other than C. For example: The Eb Alto Saxophone The Bb Clarinet The Horn in F Why do these instruments have a key in the first place? Here's a more ...
0
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3answers
88 views

how change key while solo/improvisation on guitar?

I'm playing a song with the chord progression: Am7-Am7 Gm7-C7 F-F When the song starts I am in the key of A, but in wich key am I when the Gm7 or the F chord is playing? And how am I supposed to ...
0
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2answers
85 views

What decides the key of a song?

I'm creating a list with the keys of the songs we play in the band, and I found a song, where I'm not sure what it is. Note that this is just an example. In general, I'm finding for a way how to get ...
0
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7answers
264 views

How can I memorize all the notes in each usable key?

Basically, I want to have all the notes in every usable key memorized so that I can instantly just call them to my memory and play them. By usable I mean any key that has 7 or less flats/7 or less ...
2
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2answers
33 views

run two usb midi controllers on same time?

I have no experience with midi but i have two devices (alesis v49 and akai pro mpk25) in total 74 key so is it possible to combine these to two midi work as one device to cover most of piano key ?
3
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4answers
180 views

Why does the circle of fifths have to be symmetric

I have studied music theory ever since I studied piano playing. So I know about things like accidentals and how white key accidentals like Cb or E# make sense. But one thing I don't know about is ...
0
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3answers
2k views

Does pop music ever make use of modulation?

When I am playing the music of J.S.Bach, my friends often mistake it to be a piece of pop music. However, they often realize they are wrong the instant the music modulates. I haven't listened to much ...
-2
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5answers
141 views

Is there a preference for the key of G major on the guitar? [closed]

Kind of like how the piano is biased towards C major. I'm wondering if the guitar makes G major and its associated chords easy to play. In a Spotify research article they found that G is the most ...
3
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4answers
607 views

Transposing from C to Cm? [duplicate]

trying to transpose a song from C to Cm, is this possible? how many semitones?etc My software is playing up and my theory isn't that great, thanks
1
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2answers
63 views

Rules for naming borrowed chords in roman numeral analysis

I don't seem to find an extensive resource on how to name out of scale chords in roman numeral analysis. E.g. let's look at this piece from "All imperfect things" of Michael Nyman: I'm stuck on M5 ...
3
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5answers
931 views

What is the best way to organize chords/keys in a database (details below)?

I am working on a project that involves putting together a database of chords/keys, and I'm wondering what you guys think is the best way to categorize each chord/key. For example, if I want users to ...
0
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1answer
99 views

How to assure acapella is in key with instrumental

I am a bit confused. I always use a reference track, in order to create my chord progression, in this case it was: I created the Chord Progression and then I used my ...
1
vote
1answer
229 views

Key modulation in a fugue, how to not lose sight of the tonic?

Now I'm having some more trouble with my fugue. But this time it has to do with key modulation. I feel my fugue is becoming too jazzy thanks to the modulation. There are the primary modulations(from ...
2
votes
1answer
222 views

What key is the song “Old Town Road” by Lil Nas X in? [closed]

Link to the song: The chords in the song are as follows: G# - B - F# - C# (All in Major) But as I listen to the song I keep thinking it's in the key of G# Minor (...
5
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3answers
1k views

How can you tell when you unintentionally change keys when singing?

My dad always tells me that when I sing I change keys. Like I'll start out right and then change for a single phrase or word and then change back. I don't know when I do this, I can't tell and my ...
11
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5answers
2k views

Accurately recalling the key - can everyone do it?

I'm wondering if it is common for people to accurately recall not only the melody of a song they know, but also the key. I've recently done a small experiment where I asked a few of my friends to hum ...
5
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1answer
142 views

Are there J.S. Bach pieces that do not start with the tonic chord?

I know some simple pieces where the initial phrase starts in the IV chord or the V chord, but I'm wondering if Bach used to do that.
5
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2answers
180 views

Break from conventionality in Mahler Symphony no. 1

In the Wikipedia article for Gustav Mahler's Symphony No. 1, in describing its structure, a paragraph ends with The usage of F minor for the last movement was a dramatic break from conventional ...
24
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4answers
1k views

Where do the double accidentals go in “theoretical” key signatures?

Recent questions led me to discussions of theoretical keys, which are defined by Wikipedia as keys with at least one double accidental in the key signature. (Unfortunately, the source of that ...
4
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5answers
2k views

If parallel keys aren't closely related, then why are they so easy to get to?

I got this comment on an answer of mine: "Parallel major/minor keys are not closely related. They are easy to get to, but not closely related. It's like you might live by a subway that make it ...
101
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25answers
24k views

What's the point of keys other than C and Am?

I'm VERY new to music theory, just learning. I'm reading about keys and scales right now. From what I understand major keys are all the same except for being shifted by one or more semitones (e.g. C ...
1
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2answers
125 views

How do I know if I'm in a Major key or its Relative Minor? [duplicate]

For example, if I compose a chord progression F-G-C-Am. Can I Assume C as the Key? How do I know I'm not in A minor? I've seen songs analysis that says a song is in determined key even when the root ...
24
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9answers
7k views

Are sharp keys “bright” and flat keys “dark”?

I was reading this book and on the "Circle of Fifths" chapter it claims that keys with sharp key signatures (C, G, D, ...) are "often though by musicians" to be "bright" sounding and those with flat ...
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3answers
428 views

Chord has every note of the harmonic minor scale. Name? [closed]

I see an extremely strange type of chord in the first bar of the attachment below. This is the beginning of the fourth movement of Beethoven's 9th Symphony. It has all of the notes of the D harmonic ...
2
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1answer
66 views

Guidelines for finding tonality/key of a song

I am trying to determinate in which key a song was written. I am not musician nor music student. I knew some clues for finding the key but I am having trouble with a specific song because the criteria ...
9
votes
2answers
102 views

Is parallel modulation a thing?

I have heard that going in between 2 parallel keys is just modal interchange and not a modulation because the tonic note is the same. Maybe if the change in key is short and only to add color to a ...
15
votes
2answers
2k views

Why use accidentals instead of a key signature?

Using my ears, I determined the key of Theme from Schindler's List to be D minor. Looking at the sheet music that I have, I saw that the key signature is C major/A minor, but every single B in the ...
4
votes
1answer
154 views

Chromatic 7th chords going upwards in Beethoven

This is about how the harmony is working in Rondo a Capriccio by Beethoven. Here is the passage I am talking about: So starting at measure 291, there is a passage where 7th chords go up chromatically,...
4
votes
3answers
143 views

Can the melody determine the key of an ambiguous chord progression

I am writing a song in A major. The chords in the verse are A, C#m, F#m, F#m. Now it is clear to me the key of this part of the song is A/F#m but then in the chorus the C#m chord is switched with the ...
5
votes
2answers
291 views

what kind of chord progession is this?

im quite new in music theory and i really dont understand what he is doing here. is he changing the key after every chord? he talks about c minor being the root note. after that he switches to c# ...
3
votes
2answers
91 views

Why does the key change happen where it does here?

In the image below, the key is initially G, then changes to E (right?) for the rest of the song. However, that entire bar uses sharps from E, and the key never changes back. Why wouldn't the key ...
0
votes
1answer
94 views

Is Yo Ho (A Pirate's Life for Me) in A minor or F major? [closed]

'A pirate's life for me' sounds like it's in A minor (and that's what multiple websites indicate) yet there's an A#/Bb in it. Where does that Bb come from? Does it modulate between F major and A minor ...
6
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3answers
2k views

Why isn't there a closely related key to C minor that has D as tonic?

For minor keys, there are no closely related keys built on the second scale degree. Why? Is it because the chord built from the second scale degree is diminished?
5
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4answers
367 views

How exactly tell the root of a song over a defined scale on ambiguous harmonic context?

I play a song in either C major key or A minor key. Usually I determine the root (C or A) taking into account clues like: The happy or sad feel of it all The first chord (C or Am) Stereotypical ...
0
votes
5answers
127 views

Play a song in its original key? [closed]

Sometimes I play a given song in different keys, but I'm wondering if its preferable to play a song in its original key especially in performance in order to appeal to the audience the most. I read ...
4
votes
6answers
618 views

Why does VII have dominant function in natural minor

I have noticed with my own compositions that I can take something like B♭ major and use it to prepare for a C minor entrance, even if C minor is in fact the tonic. Also I have noticed that I can use G ...
10
votes
2answers
305 views

Lilypond - Custom Key Signature for Turkish folk music and microtonal accidentals

I have to create this key signature in lilypond: Would it be possible to create something like that? I really appreciate any help you can provide. Thanks!
9
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5answers
2k views

If there are no diminished keys, then why does Locrian mode exist?

A diminished chord can't work as a tonic due to its dissonance. If then, why does Locrian mode even exist? It's confusing!
0
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5answers
439 views

Is A♭ major a closely related key to C♯ major?

I'm trying to list the closely related keys to C♯ major, and here is what I get: C♯ major, the original key D♯ minor (???) F♯ major (???) A♯ minor x (B♯ diminished is not a key!) For the points that ...
16
votes
4answers
3k views

Why are both D and D# fitting into my E minor key?

I tried to look around for an answer to this problem but don't know how to ask the proper question in a search engine. I've been working on a song and realized recently that while I had been working ...
1
vote
3answers
120 views

Would this be a key change from B minor to D major?

In this amazing song by Ed Carlsen, would the part at 1:14 be considered a key change from B minor to D major? Why or why not? When I'm trying to find a key to a song, I always listen to the chord ...
12
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8answers
25k views

Why do Major keys contain minor chords?

Looking through each Major Key: At position II, III, VI are MINOR chords. At position VII, this is a DIMINISHED chord. Looking at the C Major Key as an example, this chord progression is made up ...