35

There is a rather more fundamental, physical reason for this than so far mentioned: the bass fills not only the bass frequency range, but its harmonics actually reach well into the midrange where all other voices have their fundamentals! In fact, since the bass has typically the strongest amplitude1 of all tuned instruments (save perhaps trumpets, lead ...


27

Just to expand on Pat's answer, there is a figured bass symbols for all type of inversion including root position. The picture above shows the complete figured bass symbol and how it will be denoted in analysis. As you can see root position triads and 7th chords have their own complete figured bass symbols, but reduce drastically because how common they ...


27

The fact that you are in A minor without G# (or F# and G#) means that you are in A natural minor. What defines a scale as minor or major, is the third of the scale, not the accidentals. If you have A as the root of your scale and the third is a C, then the scale is a minor one. There are 3 different types of minor scales: A harmonic minor (it has G#) A ...


27

I don't think I can improve on this "answer" of Dudley Moore's one bit: Although it is obviously a parody, and a very funny one, if you study carefully all of the devices that Moore uses to tinker with the simple melody, you'll get a lot of ideas about how to write in Beethoven's style. Part of the reason that it's so ...


18

Why? It sounds good. Music would sound boring after a while if all you played were the notes in the scale. I would be hard-pressed to find music that doesn't have notes outside of the scale--scales are just the basis for melodies, and the home base from which you can stray in creative ways. In this particular context (and your chords would be better ...


17

Normally, we're told that 5/4 is really 3/4 + 2/4 or 2/4 + 3/4. Well, I have to ask "told by who?" It is not the case that 5/4 has to be interpreted as either 3/4 + 2/4 or 2/4 + 3/4. It is perfectly valid to use groups of 5 crotchet beats as the overall rhythmic template of a piece of music, without having to have the same sub-groupings in different parts. ...


16

First let's not look at it as a ♯V chord, but a ♭VI chord. This chord naturally occurs in the parallel minor and can easily be borrowed. Let's look at how the notes move with a sample progression in the key of C: IV F - A - C ♭VI(7) A♭ - C - E♭ - (G) I C - E - G If you look at this progression without the 7th, you'll notice a few ...


14

I'm just going to answer the question "What about tangent, or other functions", since the rest seems to have been fairly well handled. All sounds that we hear as having a definite pitch or note can be represented by a periodic function. As I wrote in my comment, any repeated shape represents a periodic function. Most periodic functions, both in the real ...


14

To answer the question of whether the C chord is "really" V of V, you need to remember one simple fact about music. When you listen to music, you hear it progressing in time. Therefore, analysing any chord in terms of "what comes after it" by looking at the score is just an intellectual exercise, if it has no relationship to what the music actually sounds ...


13

The obvious shortcoming is that after we leave the classical period, music and tonality becomes too complex for Roman numeral analysis to be completely useful. So, we don't need to mention 9th chords or jazz 7ths and the like, and I believe you understand that already from the question. For classical music, Roman numeral analysis is the most widely accepted ...


12

That's Coltrane changes (before Coltrane actually used them in Giant Steps etc.), where the roots of the tonal centers move in (enharmonic) major thirds (either up or down): [Bb] -> (down M3) [Gb] -> (down M3) [D] -> (up M3) [Gb] Returning to the key of F is not part of the cycle anymore, it's just going back to the original key. This is what the ...


12

We call this text painting (or word painting), and it's a clever compositional tactic that dates back centuries. In short, text painting occurs when a composer does something in the music that is a direct reference to something in the text. Text painting can be very literal, like when the text uses words like "rising" or "higher" and the melody ascends. But ...


11

They are figured bass numbers, as used under bass lines in (primarily) the Baroque era to indicate harmonic content to be improvised by continuo players such as the harpsichordist. The numbers refer to the diatonic intervals above the bass. Look at your 6/4 example above. The two distinct notes above the bass note are a sixth and a 4th above, hence 6/4. This ...


11

First let me make this remark: as always when analyzing, know what key you are in and look for accidentals outside the key. If there are no accidentals outside the key then you can't be dealing with a secondary dominant. Now let's look at the chords in the key of C major: ii: D F A V/V: D F# A ii7: D F A C V7/V: D F# A C As you can see the ...


11

Typically, in traditional classical music, non-harmonic tones like suspensions are not indicated in the Roman numeral analysis. You would simply notate the numeral and inversion for the chord to which you are resolving. Here's an example: In jazz and pop music, on the other hand, you may find the chord analyzed as IVsus or IVsus4, for instance. This is ...


11

Not every rondo is the exact same form. There are many different types of rondos with the most popular variations being A-B-A, A-B-A-C-A, and A-B-A-C-A-B'-A (the last one being comparable to your definition). A rondo is defined by repetition (the A section in most cases) and you start with one musical idea go somewhere else (typically refereed to as an ...


11

Sine and cosine are the same, just offset by 90 degree. They form a "quadrature pair": if you add their squares, you get a constant. When you draw a sine wave as a representation of audio, it represents either pressure (compared to neutral) at some "listening" point, or an impulse density. Both together form a quadrature pair again: if you square and add ...


10

Hmmm, this is a little off the cuff, but I think it's probably easiest to look at mm. 12-13 (primarily 13) as a viio/ii or V7/ii in the new Bb key. That is to say, the B-nat is part of a secondary leading-tone or secondary dominant chord. I suppose it could just as easily be a viio/iv or V7/iv in the old key, and then you could call the iv a pivot chord like ...


10

Definitely sounds like a chord sequence in D Minor to me. Particularly because it starts on D Minor, and the A Minor chords at the end have a dominant function, despite not being major. (An A Major chord at the end would create a strong perfect cadence, A - Dm, when it repeats, which I presume it is supposed to...) These chords are all found in D Natural ...


10

The song could be on G# major; It would be easier to say it's in Ab major scale. These two are the same scale and they are called Enharmonic scales. (I'm using Ab because it is more common and easier to understand). Here is how: Ab (G#) -> 1st chord of your scale. Ebm (D#m) -> 4th of the minor scale with the same name (Ab or G# minor) -- you are allowed to ...


10

The other chords get Roman numerals based on the key you are in. For example in the key of D major you would have the following Roman numerals map to the following chords: D Em F#m G A Bm C#dim I ii iii IV V vi viio This comes from how chords are built in major keys. When you don't have a key try and figure out what key fits the chords best. ...


10

Wow, really terrific musical example! There are two necessary aspects to acknowledge that help us understand this section. First is that these chords alternate between something and B7 (or the B-major triad). This is important because, since the excerpt is in E minor, the chords in question alternate between something and V7. This is a big clue that we can ...


9

I agree, these are somewhat dubious designations, but there's a possible justification for looking at them more or less as analyzed in your example, in increasing order of dubiousness. The first example is actually just a deceptive resolution of the secondary dominant, akin to a primary V7 going to vi. V7/vi in C major is an E7 chord that wants to go to A ...


9

It's a D# because it's functioning as a D#. In the three measures you can see the line goes E -> D# -> E. It's acting much more leading tone like than 7th like as if it were truly an F7 the next note would either be the same or resolve down. The fact the harmony could be interpreted as an F7 is kind of a moot point as the next measure lands squarely on Am ...


9

The second chord is a chromatic passing chord: the bass line is descending (A -> G#) whereas the top line is ascending (A -> B). It doesn't really have a name which describes it properly (CaugMaj7 is a possibility as is Eaug). The third chord is a true C with G in the bass, so again the bass descends (G# -> G) and the top ascends (B -> C). So, viewing the ...


9

First of all, you're reading a very good book from which you'll learn a lot about jazz harmony. One important thing to realize when analyzing jazz progressions is that there is no right and wrong. Nobody can disagree with your analysis if you hear it the way you say you do. The problem with beginners (and I don't say that you are one) is that often they just ...


9

Just a quick answer: that seems to indicate a secondary dominant ("five-seven of four"). I believe it is more common to show them with a slash, e.g., V7/IV. Check out this question --- What is a secondary dominant chord? --- for further discussion.


8

A short answer: Scarborough Fair is not in the minor, but is modal: Dorian (that's where the major IV chord comes from) and Aeolian (the minor iv). The modal character is underscored by the progression VII-i, which is normal for Dorian and Aeolian, and the fact that there is no major V chord. And no, this doesn't come from Bach- its roots are probably ...


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