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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2answers
836 views

How to name the key of a song that modulates?

I'm in the process of learning about keys. I'm looking at the song Cherub Rock by the Smashing Pumpkins. The tabs I see online say that the song is in the key of E major. The main riff of the verse ...
3
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3answers
135 views

Does minor/major affect scale degrees when talking about chords?

Say I'm playing a song in C Minor, and I play the chords Cm, B♭, A♭, G If I was talking about, or analyzing these chords using roman numerals, which way is more correct to refer to them? i, VII, VI,...
3
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2answers
419 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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5answers
2k views

What software can change guitar backing track one-half step lower?

What software can change guitar backing track one-half step lower? Many guitar songs are in E and A flat key and backing tracks are in pure E and A respectively, you know. It sounds obviously ...
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4answers
1k views

Finding The Key Of A Song [duplicate]

How can I find out what the key of a song is? The method I'm most familiar and comfortable with is playing each pitch along with the song and then checking which pitch sounds the most stable at all ...
3
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3answers
2k views

Minor key and its chords [duplicate]

I am trying to learn the scales and its relative chords. I am confused with Minor scale. Lets take A minor key for an example. A minor key has following notes: A B C D E F G and its relative chords ...
3
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3answers
111 views

What criteria do composers use to choose the key of a song? [duplicate]

I would like to know what criteria composers use when choosing the key of a song. In the case of music composed for orchestra or, in general, for instruments with limited tessitura or tuned in a ...
3
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2answers
197 views

Can't seem to figure out the key of a chord progression?

Ab min7 - Db min - Eb min7 - Gb7 I looked it up and it said it was in the key of B and Ab min? Not very good with theory so I don't know how it could be a major and minor key at the same time. ...
3
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3answers
196 views

Are there any cases where the ii chord is replaced by the Neapolitan chord in the Circle of Fifths Progression?

I know that the circle of fifths progression is extremely common, and it is "I-IV-viio-iii-vi-ii-V-I" in major and "i-iv-VII-III-VI-iio-V-i" in minor. However, are there any cases where the ii / iio ...
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3answers
2k views

How does one establish a key? What are the criteria?

I am reading 'Guide to the Practical Study of Harmony' by Tchaikovsky. On page 63, he says to pass from one key into another it is not sufficient merely to employ a number of chords not belonging ...
3
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1answer
318 views

Are all keys created equal?

Often when I have been composing, I have noticed a peculiar phenomenon. Sometimes I can't think of a new way to tweak my song and it helps to change the key. I get new ideas and can then switch back ...
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4answers
65 views

theory question: Key of D, the 2, 3, and 6 chords are shifting to major chords?

I am playing a song in the key of D (or B minor actually, which is D), but inside of the song, the 2,3 and 6 chords are changing to major chords instead of minor chords. Bm becomes B. E minor becomes ...
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2answers
64 views

Is there a specific name for the type of bridge that signals that a song is going from one key to another

The music starts in C and then there is a BRIDGE of some type that is played and the ear is prepared for the fact that the music is going to another key. What is this "we are shifting to another ...
3
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1answer
251 views

What is the standard definition of a distant key?

In my knowledge, a distant key is any key that is not enharmonic, parallel, relative, or closely related to the original key. However, some people claim that distant keys are simply keys that are not ...
3
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1answer
54 views

Can someone help me figure out this music theory KEY finding question

Messing around Sunday I came up with a song that has the following Chord Progression. I'm just learning music theory and am having trouble on identifying the key. The chord progression is: C7 D7 F7 ...
3
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2answers
121 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
7k 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 ...
2
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3answers
902 views

Colour of keys in the era of equal-temperament [duplicate]

As I understand it, the great bulk of music from the Baroque, Classical, and Romantic eras are at least these days performed on equal temperament instruments. And yet there is still a great deal of ...
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4answers
589 views

How can different compositions use C Major?

Pardon what I know is an embarrassing question - I am at the very basics of learning music theory. If a scale such as C Major is an exact pattern of intervals, how can multiple songs be composed with ...
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4answers
2k views

How to differentiate between relative keys [duplicate]

So I'm learning that C major and A minor scales have the same notes. Then, if I look at, say, 10 consecutive single notes, how do I tell if they're in C or Am? It's easier when you see a chord, ...
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3answers
597 views

Trying to figure out the scale of a piece I am writing

I am writing something and am unsure of how I can work out exactly what key it is in, not that it really matters but I'm interested. I think I have narrowed it down to C or G minor, as the notes in ...
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3answers
911 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.
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3answers
473 views

Confused about the key of “Watermelon Man”

It is said that the original 1962 recording of "Watermelon Man" by Herbie Hancock is in the key of F. It makes a lot of sense given it's a bluesy piece, so we have a typical I-IV-V based chord ...
2
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4answers
198 views

Did classical composers typically modulate using the circle of fifths?

I read somewhere that classical composers modulate using a fifth. I think they did this because it's the smoothest key change as scales only differ between one note when they do that. So was that the ...
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6answers
124 views

Why is this not a modulation?

Bars three and four look to me like a modulation to the subdominant with an imperfect cadence in Eb (especially with the Ab auxiliary note in bar three). The answers, however, mark bars three and four ...
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3answers
1k views

Do major triad chord notes depend on the key? Key=E, Emaj=EG#B vs Key=C, Emaj=EGB?

I came across something odd shown in the picture below. (What this is from is not very relevant, but in case your interested: I'm building a simple phone app that would allow me to practice ...
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3answers
313 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 ...
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5answers
116 views

How to get a more major sound without going directly to major?

So I am composing a piece for piano trio to represent the transition from winter to spring. I have finished the first part where it is all in minor, D minor to be more specific, to represent winter. ...
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1answer
24k views

How many cents would would i need to shift the pitch of the sample to change its key?

I have a sample in C# Major that I want transposed to F# Major. How many cents would would i need to shift the pitch of the sample in order to transpose it?
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3answers
964 views

How to work out the key of a song whose chords don't seem to fit an obvious scale?

I don't really know where to start with "House of the Rising Sun" as an example of a song which doesn't have an obvious key. How would I go about working this out - and does it actually matter that ...
2
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1answer
808 views

Are you still playing a scale if you don't include every note in said scale? [duplicate]

For instance, if you're playing C major, and instead of playing C D E F G A B, you play C D E F G A, or C D E F G, would that still be considered playing in that scale or key? Because I doubt that ...
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3answers
296 views

Should you return to the original key?

So I've begun writing several orchestral pieces (forgive me if I use incorrect names, I didn't study orchestrastion or composition beyond my GCSEs). When writing a piece, you often change the key ...
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5answers
284 views

B5 power chord in A minor

I'm trying to write a rock/punk song in the key of A minor and the chorus goes: B5, C5, G5, F5. The B chord in A minor is B diminished, does that mean I have to use the diminished chord or can I use ...
2
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4answers
111 views

Is it possible for a piece of music to be in multiple keys at the same time?

I was wondering if it is possible (would possibly sound good) to have a piece of music be using multiple keys simultaneously. For example having the melody use a different key to the harmony. Would ...
2
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2answers
136 views

Key Signature Reasoning

I'm looking through a piece of music that has two flats in the key signature. It feels like it's in D minor (the last chord), and the verse alternates between E♭9 and Dm6. A couple of things - ...
2
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3answers
617 views

Why is F sharp the only sharp Major Diatonic Harmonica offered and why is there no G flat harmonica?

I tune my guitar half step flat to make it easier to sing the songs I love to play. I also play harmonica along with guitar on many songs that feature a harmonica solo (Neil Young's "Heart of Gold" ...
2
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2answers
210 views

Why are key signatures put in a circle?

Why are key signatures arranged in a circle like it is today, why not a triangle... or a square? Who came up with the idea to arrange the key signatures in a circle?
2
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1answer
988 views

Is there a name for when two keys next to each-other on a keyboard are played at the same time?

For example, suppose you play an F and an F#, or a B and a C, from the same octave at the same time. It usually doesn't sound very good. I've looked a while but I can't seem to find a name for it. Is ...
2
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1answer
329 views

Why are most string quartets in a key with few sharps or flats?

At most, in a string quartet, I've seen 4 flats or sharps. Now I have been told that this is because C major, G major, D major and A major are the easiest keys on a string instrument because they have ...
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4answers
674 views

Why is a Major sixth A interval an A minor chord in the Key of C?

In key signature of C major the notes used are CDEFGABC and I came to know that in Chord signature become C Dmin Emin F G Amin Bdim and C. D is major second and A is major sixth interval but it is ...
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4answers
2k views

What key contains the chord progression C, Fm, Bb? Or is it multiple keys?

The chord progressions for the song Nomadic Revery by Bonnie Prince Billy are: Verse: (C Fm Bb Fm Bb C)x2 Cmaj7 Chorus: (Bb C Fm Bb C)x2 Bridge: (Cm Eb)x3 Gm (Cm Eb)x3 Bb Cm (Cm Eb)x3 Fm Gm The ...
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3answers
504 views

Modulating from key Gm to key Bbm

I'm trying to modulate from the song 7 Years (Gm) to the song Hometown Glory (Bbm). How do I write a something that joins the two?
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4answers
2k views

How to find the key of a song without a pitch reference?

For instance, if I play the middle C or any note before a song starts, I can instantly guess the key of the song(I think this is known as RP - relative pitch). Another trick I've used is finding out ...
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2answers
849 views

Boogie Woogie in another keys what are the limits?

I'm a pianist and I play boogie woogie very well in C and G. Everyone knows that these are the easiest to play on, but guitarists like E and A and maybe D. I started to learn some riffs in A and E but ...
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2answers
160 views

Soloing in any key on guitar. Knowing the fretboard or knowing the boxes?

A few days ago I started to practice soloing in random keys. For example A major, G minor, etc. Before I dive into the details I must add that I know every single box in minor/major/pentatonic scales,...
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2answers
2k views

Only one key possible to play in for harmonicas?

Harmonicas are always tuned in a certain key. Does that mean that I can only play songs in that key on it or that it is just harder to play something written in a different key?
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3answers
319 views

When playing in a minor key, is it common to switch between the different minor scales?

Is it common to switch between natural, harmonic, and melodic minor scales when playing the same piece or is it best to stick with one?
2
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4answers
916 views

Em9-A-B progression - would you consider that a key change?

From a theory perspective, does a repeated R&B progression like Em9-A-B count as a key change occurring over and over, or a I-IV-V progression with a seriously modified I chord (from major to ...
2
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2answers
558 views

Determine whether to keep the original key when arranging a solo piece

Is there any best practice? Or perhaps how should you do it. To keep the original key or not, while playing a solo piece. I have several pieces by Bach which I would like to perform and possibly also ...
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3answers
121 views

Does this song have a key, and if so, what is it? [closed]

I'm writing a song where the notes do not align to any particular key. The way it works is this Chord 1 leads to Chord 2. Chord 2 leads to chord 3 but Chord 3 does not have to relate to Chord 1. Chord ...

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