Questions tagged [theory]

For questions about how music works, seeking to identify structures and patterns in music. Used to indicate questions about musical concepts and structures, as opposed to techniques and execution.

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2 votes
3 answers
86 views

How to compose like Liszt? [closed]

I've been trying to compose like him for a long time but I've got no idea where to start. What are some of his most used chord progressions? Info like this would help.
1 vote
0 answers
36 views

When would I write E sharp and when would I write F natural? [duplicate]

My song is in E Major. The notes go as follows: A, G#, F#, E#/F natural, F#. My instinct is to do E# so that I don't have to put another accidental on the next note. Is there a specific reason to use ...
1 vote
1 answer
194 views

Ukulele prodigy said Do-Re-Mi-Fa-Sol took him three months to learn - what does this mean?

In this video, at around 18 seconds, ukulele guitar prodigy Feng E said his father taught him how to play ukulele, and he learned Do-Re-Mi-Fa-Sol in three months, which, according to him, might be a ...
2 votes
6 answers
341 views

Do classical musicians sometimes go deliberately out of pitch?

Can anyone explain to me what's going on?: I am not and have never been a professional classical musician, but I don't think you need to be one to see that something ...
-1 votes
1 answer
115 views

How does bass music make vibrations?

Please explain to me how bass music from one house makes another house vibrate, they are roughly 10 feet apart. Thanks for answering!
0 votes
0 answers
38 views

Need help analyzing music [closed]

How do I provide an analysis of a musical piece? (I am completely new to music and have no prior experience what so ever). Can someone please let me know/guide me to finding resources on how I can ...
3 votes
0 answers
47 views

What exactly are the different staccatos and are there any examples? [duplicate]

I am pretty new to piano and am starting to work on Moonlight Sonata. (I just finished Alfred's Level 1 book for context). My book (Beethoven Moonlight Sonata Alfred Masterwork Edition) says there are ...
1 vote
4 answers
95 views

What chords are considered acceptable as passing chords in common-practice-period tonal voice leading?

I want to move from an FMaj to an Fmaj(6) chord. Putting a passing chord in between, a CMaj(3/4)(A second inversion dominant 7th) chord seems to work nicely. But these chords, at least in the common-...
4 votes
4 answers
18k views

Is it possible to transpose samples (in cents) from minor to major?

I'd like to transpose a sample (in cents) from G Minor to C Major. How do I do that, or is it even possible?
1 vote
2 answers
135 views

Can anyone identify what's going on with this rhythm? Is it syncopated, odd time signature or are the instruments out of sync?

I'm currently transcribing the outro section of the song "Even the Gods Must Die" by Nile and I've been trying to figure out how to approach the feel of the rhythm. It seems like the drums ...
1 vote
1 answer
53 views

Question on the definition of a dissonant passing/neighbor tone?

I am currently trying to teach myself counterpoint following Jacob Gran's videos. When I was analyzing my exercises today, I thought of this question. If the first two notes of a dissonant neighbor(or ...
1 vote
1 answer
73 views

How to restart my guitar studies from scratch?

I have being playing the guitar for quiet a while now(12+ years but more dormant years within this). I am able to deduce guitar tabs of a given song on my own(mostly with some minor errors). I have ...
16 votes
4 answers
30k views

Why do the notes of Melodic-Minor Scale change when you play it in descending order?

Okay I'll admit, I don't know everything about music theory but I was pretty sure that any given diatonic (7 note) scale contained particular notes that defined the scale and were unique to the scale ...
1 vote
0 answers
25 views

am i right with this track's scale? [closed]

hi can you please help me about this track's scale ? i think it might be c# mixolydian as i tried to play the notes along the track am i right about it or it is something else - i'm a beginner by the ...
4 votes
2 answers
406 views

What is the meaning of the two added time signatures?

If my understanding (just being based on the number of counts in each measure in the given staff) is right then two added time signatures only mean that in one measure, there will be 6 beats and a ...
2 votes
2 answers
84 views

Tremolo notation for Sixteenth note triplets

I'm wondering if there's a tremolo notation (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tremolo) for a repeated Sixteenth note triplets like this one for example: I've only seen the notation for regular rhythm ...
8 votes
4 answers
1k views

Why are diminished fifths called tritones?

The word "tritone" basically means three whole tones. In the C major scale, we find this between F and B as F-G-A-B. This interval is also called an augmented fourth. However, a diminished ...
9 votes
4 answers
6k views

modulating by a tritone

I have heard that modulating by diminished fifth/tritone is the hardest of all modulations. Interestingly my non-musician husband has just composed a tune with a smooth tritone modulation (ie. from C ...
20 votes
5 answers
27k views

How to differentiate between a diminished fifth and an augmented fourth interval?

Both are a tritone appart, both sound the same. How can we differentiate when an interval is an augmented fourth or a diminished fifth? Context: In voice leading we learn that when the spelling of ...
10 votes
6 answers
1k views

Why can't we spell a diminished 3rd or an augmented 5th using only the notes in a major scale?

This might be a silly question, but why can't we spell a diminished 3rd or an augmented 5th using only the notes in a major scale? I think what I'm really confused is that, for example, A to F has 8 ...
0 votes
4 answers
104 views

Why is it common to use slow practice when learning melodies on the piano but less common when learning to sing them?

I have been told by many piano teachers to practice playing melodies slowly, ie using slow practice. I have never really been told by singing teachers to do slow practice. Why is it common to use slow ...
3 votes
2 answers
93 views

What do you call it when two different melodies are combined? [duplicate]

Say that Alice has a theme song with a certain melody. Also, Bob has his own theme with a certain melody. But during a scene where Alice and Bob are together, both melodies are played together at once ...
10 votes
3 answers
457 views

Tritone substitution to a major chord?

I'm relatively new to jazz theory and I've been working through the book, Hal Leonard Guitar Method: Jazz Guitar by Jeff Schroedl. In it he describes a tritone substitution as a "V, ii(II), or vi(...
13 votes
10 answers
46k views

Confusion about major and minor second intervals

Why is a major second interval different from a minor second interval considering that in the natural scales formulae they are both one whole step?
6 votes
3 answers
3k views

Meaning of "Battuta" in Counterpoint

What is Battuta and does it only apply to voice leading by contrary motion? For example, in treble clef, if going from "E-G" (major-tenth - that is, the "E" is in the bass and the "G" is in ...
1 vote
2 answers
68 views

How do I play these chords? (Parentheses around chord symbols) [duplicate]

How do I play the chords I marked with red dots? First, in measure 4, can I alternatively play C#m7 and F#7? Why does it sound off with the melody then? Second, the chords in measures 8, 9 and 10, how ...
2 votes
1 answer
69 views

Historically, what is the difference between the interval qualities "perfect" and "major"? [duplicate]

So I'm trying to wrap my head around intervals. I know that, for instance, a major chord is made up by the fundamental (I), a perfect third (III) and a perfect fifth (V). So, the "important" ...
1 vote
1 answer
47 views

Is there a name for this pattern of piano chord progressions? (Clementi Op. 36 No. 5 & 6)

I noticed in Clementi Op. 36 No. 5 and No. 6 there are these very similar and peculiar chord progressions (see image). Do those three chords often go together like that? Or is it more a Clementi style?...
8 votes
1 answer
380 views

Open string call out does not match requested music note

I am learning guitar and recently came across a sheet requesting what I understand to be an open B string (red arrow), however the music sheet shows a C (blue arrow) note being played. What is the ...
1 vote
1 answer
72 views

Translating Sheet Music to Guitar Tabs (without any software help (: ) [duplicate]

I have been playing guitar for a few months and have grown to love it. I played sports and participated in 0 fine arts growing up, so this is all very new to me. I was excited to initially learn ...
1 vote
1 answer
38 views

What is the difference between singing piano (dynamics) and how most adults sing softly (with lower volume) when singing eg. lullabies?

Many adults who sing lullabies for children use more of a soft voice with low volume. What I have been told is that playing an instrument or singing in piano (dynamics) isn't that easy. My experience ...
2 votes
3 answers
97 views

A#dim7 resolving to Amajor7

I'm working on a Neo-Soul tune that keeps preceding the Amaj7 (I Chord) with an A# dim7 and some variations. The key is really A Lydian. One time the A# dim7 is replaced by an A9(b5)...and another ...
1 vote
1 answer
37 views

Can you explain why they have (in bar 7) a fifth interval moving in similar motion in this hymn arrangement?

When we study part-writing we often hear about how a two notes making up a fifth should not move in the same direction. I've been told not to do it, but I see professionals hymn arrangements breaking ...
55 votes
7 answers
40k views

Does it really make difference to play a song in a different key?

I hear sometimes players and composers say that this song won't sound good in F Major for example, and you should play it or write it in G Major (this was just an example). In other words, it seems ...
1 vote
1 answer
54 views

What would be the difference between using the laryngeal tilt and vowel modification for higher notes?

I have been told by singing teachers (all "classical") that I should sing down to the higher notes. To that sounds like they wanted me to use the laryngeal tilt. I've been told that by my ...
5 votes
6 answers
843 views

Question about beats and their inheritance of accents on the rhythm

I see that I've created a lot of confusion with my original question, so I have decided to send the author of "How to read Music in 30 Days, English 2022 Ed." a detailed question that should ...
11 votes
4 answers
1k views

How to notate a non-standard hexatonic key

I am writing part of a piano piece in a hexatonic "key" containing these notes: C - D# - E - G - Ab - B (I say "key" instead of scale because I'm treating it like a key, deriving ...
3 votes
5 answers
120 views

Harmony: why does transforming a ii minor chord into II major chord work?

I accidentally composed a song that uses the same harmony "trick" as the song The Odyssey from Symphony X. Both are in the key of Eb (I know it's C minor, but I like to think major for ...
6 votes
4 answers
3k views

How does a natural change flats and sharps?

If we have a G flat a natural gives a G, if we have a G sharp it gives a G, but what if we have a G double flat or double sharp? Especially if we are working in a key where G is already a flat or a ...
1 vote
0 answers
44 views

cut time vs common time [duplicate]

i understand that 2/2 or cut time has 2 beats as opposed to 4/4 or common time, but how does this actually sound different? if you took a piece and played if it was notated as being 4/4 and then ...
3 votes
3 answers
1k views

Common patterns in music

When I asked my question on why do C7 chords contain a Bb and not a B, a user gave an example, how tonic chords transforms into a IV chord thru a dominant chord (C - C7 - F). I found this transition ...
4 votes
8 answers
220 views

where does the dominant IV7 (ie; F7 in the key of CMaj) come from?

So, I'm learning to get "outside" chords, by borrowing from parallel scales. Other chords are available by taking the secondary dominants of different degrees. For example, to get EMaj while ...
-1 votes
7 answers
2k views

Is it correct to write C♯♯♯♯♯♯♯♯♯♯♯♯ (twelve sharps) as C?

Let's say there is a song that starts at middle C and the next note is always the previous note raised by a perfect fifth or lowered by a perfect fourth to keep all notes within audible ranges. By ...
2 votes
6 answers
579 views

Is an E augmented triad the same as a C inverted augmented triad?

I know that a C augmented triad is C, E, G♯ and an E augmented triad is E, G♯, B♯. However, I think we can replace the B♯ in the E augmented triad by its enharmonic equivalent, a C. Is it appropriate ...
9 votes
1 answer
178 views

Interesting symbol in a piece of piano music [closed]

A friend sent me this image and asked me to identify the symbol circled in red. I tried using Google Lens but no luck. Thanks for your help!
1 vote
3 answers
101 views

1564 (I V vi IV) chord progression for Minor

Many of I-V-vi-IV chord progression examples are C major. My question is Minor. For example of Am key signature, the 1564 is Am , Em, F, Dm; however, I-V-vi-IV should mean major-major-minor-major. May ...
2 votes
4 answers
127 views

Is there music that recursively subdivides the beat in odd subdivisions?

For example: 3/4 has 3 quarter notes per beat, and each quarter note subdivides into 2 eighth notes, 4 sixteenth notes etc. which makes the total count an even number (6/8 or 12/16 etc.) Is there any ...
1 vote
3 answers
309 views

Where can I find a composition teacher?

I live in Southwestern California just some 100 miles away from the Arizona border and have played piano since I was 8 years old. I'm 16 now and have been self-taught since age 14. I want to take my ...
158 votes
12 answers
49k views

Why is the guitar tuned like it is?

Why is there that funny tuning kink between the G and B string on a guitar in standard tuning? I.E. the gap (interval) between the rest of the adjoining strings is 5 frets (semitones) (or a perfect ...
1 vote
5 answers
122 views

What is the definition of folk music and how does it differ from traditional music?

I've been thinking about the terms folk music and traditional music. Traditional music seems in most cases to mean music without a known author or composer (or sometimes a tune writtten by a person, ...

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