Questions tagged [modes]

For questions concerning the musical modes. These can include historical views of mode by the Greeks or the various rotations of scale collections. Questions about historical views of mode should also include the history tag.

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Can you use both diatonic major and minor scale with any mode?

I am learning the modes right now for the Harmonic Major scale. I usually get the idea of a mode by droning some key and then playing all notes of that modem to sort of internalize its sound, and I ...
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What mode or scale does Hans Zimmer dwell on in Dune? [closed]

I was listening to the Dune soundtrack just now as background music, and I noticed that it felt very modal. It keeps using the following series of intervals: wholestep-halfstep-wholestep-halfstep-...
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Historical origin of the raised sixth scale degree in minor

The way I understand the melodic minor scale — with its raised 6 and 7 ascending and lowered 6 and 7 descending — is that it's representative of how composers operated when composing in minor. However,...
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If a song has no scale degree 6, how to decide between aeolian and dorian?

I don't know what I did to deserve it, but I had "When Johnny Comes Marching Home" stuck in my head this morning (perhaps better known with lyrics about an ant colony, as popularized by a ...
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How to transcribe key(or mode) signature to word

Here is my method and it work 80% of the time but sometimes it didn't work. What do I do wrong? I know how to do all the major no problem. so: C = 0 D = 2# E = 4# F = 1b G = 1# A = 3# B = 5# and if ...
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3 votes
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Does this mode of voice have a name and a use?

I found when I was a child that if I attempt to sing a note in a particular part of my vocal range, I can produce a chord rather than the usual single note. I can even speak in this mode. It is ...
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7 votes
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Is D minor also F Aeolian?

If I were to write a song in D minor, could I notate it correctly in F Aeolian? Because the subsequent 4th of the root in F Aeolian would be flat, right? Therefore, D minor and F Aeolian, which in ...
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Given a four note combination under the span of a fourth, does this chart correctly show the number of times it will appear in a scale?

I have made this chart that shows how many times will a four note combination under the span of a fourth whether perfect or augmented appear in a scale and some observations, so I wanted to ask you if ...
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9 votes
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With modes, is 'tonic' still the appropriate term for naming the first note of the scale?

Or is it better to just call it 'first note' (eg: In D Dorian, is 'D' the tonic or just 'first note'). And I suppose same question for the the rest of the scale degrees too (super tonic, mediant etc.)....
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3 votes
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Does this chord fit D minor?

Is it ok to play a g flat chord in a D minor scale? Basically I wrote a song where one riff plays a G flat at the end of it then goes right back to a D minor chord. It’s a rock song. It sounds cool ...
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5 votes
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What did Schoenberg mean with this?

A couple of years ago I decided to formalize my harmony studies (I'm a mathematician) by reading Schoenberg's book Theory of Harmony, however I left it since it felt a little too difficult for my ...
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Why does Tritone sound good in Lydian scale? [closed]

I was playing this song by Whitesnake, "Still of The Night", on the Guitar. In the middle part (2:51 n the video below), the guitarist John Sykes starts playing this beautiful Lydian sound ...
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What comes after Locrian?

I've been playing around with octatonic and enneatonic (sp?) scales of 8 and 9 discrete notes (not including the octave, of course). For the modes, this leaves one or two missing terms for the 8th and ...
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Soloing over modulation: a specific case

Consider the following chord progression: G F#m G F#m G F# ...going on with G again... 1 measure each chord The melody is in key of D (at least until F#) Soloing over this progression requires me ...
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What determines which mode you're in? [duplicate]

I've learned all about modes, but there's something that confuses me. The G major scale contains the exact same notes as the A Dorian scale. So what determines which of those two scales you are ...
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How do you memorize the modes of the melodic minor scale on guitar?

I'm looking for ideas to memorize the 7 positions of the melodic minor on the guitar fretboard. Any suggestions? Is there a way to map each pattern to a chord shape? Or a way to quickly visualize the ...
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5 votes
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Help me figure out the mode of this Howard Shore piece

I have been trying to harmonically analyse this piece by Howard Shore called “Beyond the Forest”, an Elvish song from the Hobbit. I have included the sheet music below (page two is linked) and you can ...
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3 votes
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Strange out-of-key chords in Blow by Beyonce?

Can someone explain to me what is going on tonally in Beyonce's song Blow? The bass notes deceptively seem to suggest the chords in the verse are G major and F major. But these chords do not sound ...
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Can a musical mode have more than one note for a given degree?

I know there's an exception for "melodic minor" (M7 ascending, m7 descending), but does the framework of musical modes support the notion in general? Put another way, are there any modes ...
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What are some useful resources for modal study? [closed]

I'm looking for some useful historical references for modal study. Specifically, great books or texts on how modes evolved, progressed and became the elusive subject they are today. What resources ...
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Is it possible to distinguish if a melody is in C Dorian or in D Phrygian?

(This is my first post in this community, I tried to search an answer about that basic question but it's not easy, so sorry if it is a duplicate) Since the C Dorian scale contains the following notes: ...
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4 votes
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Categorizing modes of scales other than major scale

Modes of major scale are often ordered such that each consecutive scale can be obtained by altering one step of the previous one: lydian 1 2 3 #4 5 6 7 ionian 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 ...
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What is the difference between "primi toni" and "octavi toni"

In XVI century, there was a composer called Girolamo Cavazzoni. He wrote (amongst other pieces) a couple of Magnificats - in primi toni, quarti toni, sexti toni and octavi toni. You can find the sheet ...
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What do you mean by the tonic chord feels as 'home'?

I am new to the world of music theory and have some basic knowledge of the different modes of the major scale. As per my knowledge, every scale has a tonic chord which is essentially the one all other ...
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What scale or mode is this?

The notes of the scale or mode in question are: G A B-flat D E F. Does this combination of notes have a name?
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What mode/scale are these notes in? [closed]

I have created a short melody that uses these notes: What mode contains these notes? I have tried Dorian, Aeolian, Lydian, Phrygian and Mixolydian by starting at the scale in each mode that contains ...
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Understanding method of applying modes on chords

I am learning about modes and trying to apply them on guitar over chord progressions, and I wanted to understand how exactly to know, when you hear some song, "ah, this song allows me to play ...
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How to modulate Phrygian to Harmonic Minor?

Is there any formulation to switch from Phrygian mode to Harmonic minor in same key. Like from A Phrygian to A Harmonic Minor. What I thought so far? A Phrygian Notes: A Bb C D E F G A A Harmonic ...
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A natural minor scale with raised fourth

Good day I am trying to understand what scale/mode is created by raising the fourth of a natural minor. It sounds quite dark. I understand that natural minor is the Aeolian mode of the major scales, ...
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5 votes
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Modes — C Lydian feels like G Ionian [duplicate]

I've been studying modes recently and since I have a piano, tried to experiment with them by improvising simple tunes. My problem is that as soon as I use something else that Ionian, my perception of ...
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Music and Maths - Is there a way to prove that there are only 7 Modes of Limited Transposition?

'Modes of limited transposition' are modes that have a limited availability of transpositions. Unlike a major scale that has 12 possible unique transpositions, the seven modes of limited transposition ...
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Are the names of scale degrees the same for different modes?

Do the naming conventions and their implied function still apply to modes outside the major and minor scale?Is the minor second of the Phrygian mode called the supertonic?Is the augmented fourth of ...
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1 vote
3 answers
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Why does my head fill in the 'home' note when playing a different mode of a harmonic minor scale?

I've been learning and experimenting with modes only recently, despite having played guitar for almost 11 years. In the past, I would use a "no-holds-barred, free-for-all" approach to ...
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Why is there no fourth minor scale with a natural 6 and a flat 7?

These scales are considered the minor scales: natural: 1 2 b3 4 5 b6 b7 harmonic: 1 2 b3 4 5 b6 7 melodic: 1 2 b3 4 5 6 7 (ascending) However, this scale: 4th min: 1 2 b3 4 5 6 ...
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6 votes
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Is there a theory of heptatonic scales with 1.5-step intervals?

I've been alternating between reading about music theory on Wikipedia and playing around with the scales that I've learned. The "modern Western modes" are defined systematically with their ...
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3 votes
1 answer
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Help identifying cadences and modes in iidim7 - i - vidim - vsus4

I'm a beginner when it comes to modes and cadences, and I want to understand them better to improve my song-writing as a metal guitarist. While fiddling with my guitar today, I "wrote" this ...
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How to know what mode a song is in? [duplicate]

I am learning songs that use modes and up until recently I thought I kind of had things figured out but there are some songs that still confuse me and I wanted to touch up on learning about some of ...
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Do the stable tones in a melody change if a song changes from Aeolian to Dorian mode

I am learning a song that has a progression that is in A aeolian (or A phrygian) in the verse and then changes to D dorian in the chorus. I notice that the melody phrase ends on C and then A (stable ...
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Modal Chord Progressions [duplicate]

I understand how the modes sound different by targeting certain notes. That part is coming together aurally. What I don't understand is how a chord progression can be model. Since chord progressions ...
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What are historical and structural reasons for the prevalence of Major and Minor?

Not knowing the historical reasons, I can at least think of structural reasons for having a diatonic scale, equal temperament or other circulating temperaments, and a distinction in major/minor in ...
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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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What is the origin and original meaning of "tonic", "supertonic", "mediant", etc.?

Each of the pitches in the diatonic scale has a "name": tonic supertonic mediant subdominant dominant submediant subtonic I was first introduced to tonic, dominant, and subdominant in the ...
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Question about George Russell Lydian Chromatic Concept

The wiki page says: Russell builds a prototype chromatic scale starting on the Lydian Tonic by stacking fifths, skipping the interval between the seventh and eighth tones. Using C as the Lydian Tonic ...
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What harmonic resources underlie on Pink Floyd's "Brain Damage" song which make it so beautiful?

Pink Floyd's "Brain Damage" is in the key of DMaj (I) , but the second arpegio chord (and perhaps the one that gives to the song his special sound) is G7 (IV7), whose 7th is a note that ...
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Are the notes in Blues scale in Am I Evil solo? [duplicate]

e|-11-12-11---11-12-14-14-14-12-11-12-11----|-----------------7---| B|---------12----------------------------12-|-10---------/7-------| I am analyzing the Guitar Solo of Metallica's cover version of ...
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Is there a reason why "Scale Inversions" don't get discussed?

It only dawned on me recently, but it's quite a fundamental and important feature of scales that they are not mirrored under their own inversion. The intervalic formula for major is: W W H W W W H If ...
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Is it right to call this music 'modal'? Or multi-modal?

There is a bluegrass song archetype that mixes the minor/major 3rd and raised/lowered 7th making almost an extended scale. How can I describe what's going on here using music theory? Modal mixture ...
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6 votes
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Why can't you use the same backing track for all modes of a scale?

I am seeing lots of statements online to guitarists that they should be careful to use the specific backing track for a mode. It seems to me that you should be able to use one backing track for all ...
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How should you apply the Nashville numbering system when a song is in a non-Ionian mode?

Ordinarily, Nashville numbering is simply used to denote the chords to be played according to the degrees of the scale, and where the chords vary, the custom is to use accidentals or additional ...
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3 votes
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Difference between Akebono and the diatonic scale?

It is written in this Wikipedia page that The Akebono scale is a musical scale commonly used in traditional Japanese music. Akebono and the Diatonic scale use the same intervals, but Akebono has no ...
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