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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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27
votes
8answers
14k views

Understanding minor key harmony

A comment discussion under this question from me, clued me in to the fact that I don't really understand how minor keys work very well. So here is what I think I know The natural minor comes from the ...
40
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10answers
19k views

What are modes and how are they useful?

I'm a self-taught guitarist with zero to little experience in music theory. After marrying a violinist I found that there's a lot to music theory that I know tribally but don't understand the ...
41
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5answers
8k views

When were the terms “Major” and “Minor” applied to keys?

In 1547, Heinrich Glarean published Dodecachordon in which he posited that in addition to the 4 existing pairs of church modes (plagal and authentic versions of modes with finals on D (Dorian), E (...
57
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22answers
115k views

What is the difference between a mode and a scale?

I can't seem to find a straight definition for both.
27
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7answers
29k views

Why does the Dorian mode on C have two flats?

I'm studying scale modes and I just found on Wikipedia that the Dorian mode on C has two flats... Why is this? Because the Dorian mode is just the major scale (Ionian) starting from the second note, ...
9
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3answers
4k views

Cadences for Modes

For each of the modes, is there a certain chord that goes before the targeted I or i chord? For instance, it seems in the Phrygian mode that II to i is a quite strong progression. In Ionian, obviously ...
12
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5answers
6k views

Do modes exist in the harmonic / melodic minor scales?

I'm trying to get my head around modes and the tonal center. In my understanding the natural minor scale is the same as the Aeolian mode. However, when considering the mix-up that happens in the ...
17
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1answer
1k views

Locrian Harmony

I like utilizing modes in my the pieces I write, but there is one mode I've never been able to fully grasp and utilize and that is the Locrian mode. The chords that naturally occur in the Locrian ...
22
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3answers
11k views

What are the greek modes, and how do they differ from modern modes?

This Question might be TwoFold, based on an uncertainty I have I understand the construction of traditional Ionian-Locrian modes, and I have read that various notes in the modes have traditionally ...
4
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2answers
1k views

What scales can you get modes from?

I know the modes from the major scale pretty well, and I've come to know that other scales like the melodic minor scales also has modes. So my question is, what other scales can modes be based off of ...
43
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9answers
17k views

Key signature for writing in modes other than major and minor

I have trouble deciding what accidentals to put in the key signature for pieces in Dorian, Phrygian, Lydian or Mixolydian modes. There seem to be trade-offs associated with each choice. For example, ...
18
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6answers
3k views

Harmony in Phrygian : What chords are tonic, subdominant, and dominant?

Phrygian is a very distinct sounding mode. I've been trying to better understand the harmony of the mode so I can use it more. Obviously the i chord is a tonic chord and iv is a subdominant chord, but ...
24
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8answers
16k views

Is F Lydian mode in the “key” of C Major?

In most cases (if not all), a piece of music without sharps or flats in the key signature, would be considered in the key of C major or A minor. This question assumes the context of Western Music ...
14
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3answers
17k views

Different modes of pentatonic scale

Just as there are seven modes of the diatonic scale, I would expect five modes of the pentatonic scale. Have these been classified? Here they are, in the form of {semitone interval gaps} (Notes for ...
10
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5answers
1k views

What's the value of modes?

Let's say we have a progression where all of the chords fit within traditional diatonic harmony. Maybe something like this: | E♭Maj♯11 | Cmin7 | F7 | B♭Maj | All of these chords fit ...
6
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7answers
7k views

What is the difference between C major and C Ionian?

To my understanding, C major is the same as C Ionian, because both consist of the notes C, D, E, F, G, A, B, (C) in this order. Contrast this with D Dorian, which consists of the same notes, but in ...
5
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2answers
638 views

Modal Cadence Options

I understand that when playing in a mode, the cadences are quite different from tonal cadences. For example, in the Phrygian mode a cadence would be IV - iii (or II - i if we're renumbering the chords)...
19
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7answers
4k views

How to know if it's a mode or scale?

How do I differentiate between modes? Suppose a person is playing "D Dorian". How do I know that it's "D Dorian" and not "C Major/Ionian" or "E Phrygian" and so on, and in fact "A natural minor" ...
12
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3answers
8k views

What is a parallel mode?

What is a parallel mode? How are the parallel modes used in composition and/or improvisation?
2
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2answers
4k views

Distinction between Mode and Key [duplicate]

I am a little confused on the distinction between mode and key. If I see a lot of F#s (not in the key signature) and Cs, is it correct to say I am in C lydian mode but still in C major key? Moreover, ...
6
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4answers
4k views

Modal chord progressions for Rock music

I need some solid understanding on modal chord progressions. I would be glad if you can explain and give examples this especially from a rock or blues music perspective
4
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4answers
520 views

Locrian mode and power chords

I'm studying in an online game music course, and I'm experimenting Modes to add unusual sound to the music. I'm a complete newbie in music. So let's have the Locrian mode, the root chord is a dimished ...
2
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5answers
204 views

Modes of scales other than C major

I was learning modes. But I'm confused now. My problem is that I don't know how to apply the modes in other scale. For example I know in c major, mixolydian is form g to g and all keys are flat. But ...
2
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2answers
200 views

How to know which key a song is written in with the same key signature?

How to know which key a song is written in with the same key signature ? For example, the C Lydian scale has the same key signature as G major (G Ionian) AND E (natural) minor (E Aeolian) which makes ...
1
vote
2answers
894 views

How can I deduce in which scales and mode to play?

This is maybe a naive question. Often, guitar tabs are given as a succession of chords (and/or a melody). Is there a method to know systematically in which scale and/or mode can I play? Maybe this ...
0
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1answer
1k views

Difference between Modality, Tonality and Chord-naming conventions in a more practical way?

There is a lot of very valuable information about these terms that I have been reading lately - inline on SE and on other places on the web: What's the difference between "modal music"...
10
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3answers
728 views

Why does Fux use F# in his counterpoint to a firmus written in G mixolydian

In the given image below, Fux writes a counterpoint to a cantus firmus given to him as part of his studies by his fictitious teacher Aloysious. A rule that is often emphasised is that one should ...
10
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8answers
21k views

What is a good solo to learn in the Dorian mode?

I understand that Dorian is a commonly used mode in rock. I am starting to play / improvise in the mode and would like to learn some guitar solos that are good examples of this scale so that I see how ...
9
votes
1answer
563 views

Scales in modal versus tonal music

When tonal music replaced modal music, why were 6 of the 8 scales (modes) used in modal music abandoned in favor of only two, major and minor? Superficially this would look like a reduction in the ...
8
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3answers
369 views

Does the existence of a chord tone (and its enharmonic spellings) imply the absence of another?

My question is about the notation of chords and what that notation conveys (mostly applied to jazz and the notes that are implied by the chord symbol). A chord symbol notated with a '7' alone ...
6
votes
1answer
770 views

What are all the modes (scales) based on the major scale?

I've heard that there are 7 different scales based on the major scale, like the minor scale, which is made by shifting the major scale pattern 6 to the right. What are the names of the other scales ...
5
votes
2answers
5k views

How are chord progressions built in a modal context vs traditional major/minor context?

This question is asked from the standpoint of popular music as it is today (2016). Let's confine the question to progressions that are 4 bars long, since that's the most generic pattern in pop music. ...
10
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3answers
1k views

What mode consists of the note G A Bb C Db E F G?

I was playing random scales . I came to a strange nice sounding mode,but could not find out what it's name theoretically. (Even I could not find a tonic sounding in it) The scale/mode notes are : G ...
6
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5answers
9k views

What is the difference between a dominant scale VS a mode?

I'm a beginner guitar player and I just started learning music theory. I've been going back and forth into scales and modes but I have little to zero knowledge of how they work, mainly knowing about ...
4
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4answers
3k views

Why Locrian #2?

A scale built off the 6th degree of the jazz melodic minor (C-D-Eb-F-G-A-B-C) is spelled like this: A-B-C-D-Eb-F-G Paraphrasing Mark Levine's Jazz Theory Book, Chapter 3 - Modes of the Melodic ...
4
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5answers
1k views

Tonality of modes?

With the basic modes like phrygian, Lydian etc, the modes with the same notes as C major ( so no flats or sharps) how do they sound different from a major or minor scale.( this is like E phrygian).
3
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2answers
109 views

Flavor of the modes in melody

I practice modes on my guitar nowadays, but when I try to solo freely (without a backing track) in a mode (D dorian in key of C major), I usually don't find it as a "modal music", I only hear its ...
2
votes
1answer
312 views

Melodic Minor Modes

Do modes exist in the harmonic / melodic minor scales? This question needs to be brought back to life. The answer to the question above is wrong... the chart is right, but the answer is wrong... ...
2
votes
1answer
91 views

Why weren't Ionian / Aeolian / Locrian modes considered Gregorian modes?

It is said that the Ionian (major), Aeolian (natural minor), and Locrian modes weren't really three of the ancient church (Gregorian) modes. What is the reason?
1
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1answer
721 views

What is this scale?

So I've been learning a Frank Vignola jazz chord melody etude called "A Look at Minor" and I stumbled across this particle scale that sounded really nice with a minor tone. 1 (R), b2, 3, 4, 5, b6, b7,...
13
votes
3answers
21k views

Using the Dorian Mode

I've been composing for years but know very little about modes, just stuck to major and minor. If I took a chord progression from Cmajor, ie I - IV - V - I which would be C,F,G,C and then switched ...
7
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2answers
866 views

Are all modes relative to Ionian (major) in Roman numeral analysis?

I saw in this Wikipedia article that there are a lot of flats and sharps in the modal natural chords. And I was wondering if it's because they all refer to Ionian. So in Aeolian the "bIII" chord is ...
6
votes
1answer
255 views

What is Vincent Persichetti saying about finding primary chords in the modes?

I'm really confused about what Vincent Persichetti wrote in his book Twentieth Century Harmony, where he says speaking of primary chords in modes, "The Primary chords are the tonic, plus two dominant ...
6
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2answers
1k views

What are the modes derived from the C major scale?

I'd like for someone to explain the 7 modes derived from the C major scale.
5
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2answers
656 views

Composing a piece using the idea of Dual Modality

I've recently been studying a few early 20th century techniques and I would like to learn more about the concept of dual modality. I've read as much as I could find on the on the topic, but the only ...
3
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1answer
141 views

What does it mean for a mode to be “tonally effective”?

The web site http://www.tonalcentre.org states that there are only two "tonally effective" modes of the diatonic scale (viz., the Ionian and Aeolian modes) [http://www.tonalcentre.org/Scales.html] and ...
3
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2answers
715 views

Phrygian dominant scale with a major seventh

The Phrygian dominant scale with a major seventh instead of a minor seventh is formed by: a root a minor second a major third a fourth a fifth a minor sixth a major seventh. My questions are: ...
3
votes
7answers
3k views

Augmented dominant seventh chord = what scale?

An easy example: C+7 = C E G# Bb What scale would this thing come from? When playing it it sounds lydian to me, not so much dominant. Same notes rewritten: E+7#11 = E G# B# A# my best guess ...
2
votes
2answers
495 views

How can a scale sound sadder/darker than the scale with the same key signature?

There is a general principle used to describe the intensity of a mode. The more flat notes there are in the formula of the mode, the darker it sounds. So the Locrian scale is the saddest/darkest mode, ...
2
votes
2answers
418 views

Modal II-V Patterns

So II-V7 patterns occur when a minor seventh and a dominant seventh are a fourth apart or when a minor seventh moves to a dominant seventh with root motion that moves down by half step. This all being ...