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Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!

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katlaughing 19 Sep 02 - 12:54 AM
M.Ted 14 Dec 01 - 02:28 PM
GUEST 14 Dec 01 - 01:56 PM
Mark Clark 13 Dec 01 - 07:32 PM
M.Ted 13 Dec 01 - 02:20 PM
Mark Clark 12 Dec 01 - 09:07 PM
M.Ted 12 Dec 01 - 05:25 PM
Gary T 12 Dec 01 - 04:36 PM
Mark Clark 12 Dec 01 - 04:05 PM
Mark Clark 12 Dec 01 - 03:32 PM
Gary T 12 Dec 01 - 03:07 PM
M.Ted 12 Dec 01 - 01:30 PM
GUEST 11 Dec 01 - 01:57 PM
Gary T 11 Dec 01 - 01:53 PM
Mark Clark 11 Dec 01 - 12:13 PM
Bert 09 Dec 01 - 02:13 PM
katlaughing 08 Dec 01 - 05:11 PM
GUEST,Frank 08 Dec 01 - 04:44 PM
GUEST,Night Owl 08 Dec 01 - 12:30 PM
GUEST 08 Dec 01 - 12:29 PM
Marion 06 Dec 01 - 07:04 PM
M.Ted 06 Dec 01 - 01:55 PM
GUEST,Frank 06 Dec 01 - 01:55 PM
Rick Fielding 06 Dec 01 - 12:14 PM
JohnInKansas 06 Dec 01 - 06:22 AM
Night Owl 06 Dec 01 - 12:59 AM
marty D 05 Dec 01 - 11:30 PM
Big Mick 05 Dec 01 - 11:22 PM
Mary in Kentucky 05 Dec 01 - 05:39 PM
GUEST,Les B 05 Dec 01 - 04:07 PM
JohnInKansas 05 Dec 01 - 11:45 AM
Night Owl 05 Dec 01 - 02:50 AM
Gary T 05 Dec 01 - 01:57 AM
GUEST,Joan 04 Dec 01 - 08:44 PM
Mary in Kentucky 04 Dec 01 - 04:34 PM
Night Owl 04 Dec 01 - 03:39 PM
Night Owl 04 Dec 01 - 03:33 PM
Night Owl 04 Dec 01 - 03:07 PM
JohnInKansas 04 Dec 01 - 02:25 PM
Gary T 04 Dec 01 - 02:10 PM
Night Owl 04 Dec 01 - 02:01 PM
Gary T 04 Dec 01 - 01:49 PM
English Jon 04 Dec 01 - 12:29 PM
M.Ted 04 Dec 01 - 12:17 PM
English Jon 04 Dec 01 - 10:25 AM
Gary T 04 Dec 01 - 10:03 AM
English Jon 04 Dec 01 - 08:44 AM
M.Ted 04 Dec 01 - 08:42 AM
Mary in Kentucky 04 Dec 01 - 08:37 AM
GUEST,Roger the skiffler 04 Dec 01 - 04:11 AM
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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: katlaughing
Date: 19 Sep 02 - 12:54 AM

I dropped out of this one early on. Juts have revisited it after talking to someone else. I want to say

THANK YOU TO JON W!! I finally got it, after re-reading your explanation!!*BG*

kat


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: M.Ted
Date: 14 Dec 01 - 02:28 PM

GUEST,

Interesting as they are,these points step out way beyond the scope of the discussion here, since the method for deriving the value pitch really has nothing to do its place in the chord(though it certainly has a lot to do with its sound in the chord)--

The point that you make, at least by inference, is a good one, though, and that is that that last note in a four note diminished chord does muddy the sound siginificantly--in my playing, as mentioned above, I tend to use what, on reflection is probably best called a -7b5 in place of a diminished chord, and for chord melody arrangements, would use a diminished triad--

Thirds, major and minor, are ambiguous intervals, and a chord that is nothing but minor thirds is going to be a bit dodgy, in the best of circumstances--and on top of that, the flatted fifth is probably the least reliable note in the whole 12 TET scale--


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: GUEST
Date: 14 Dec 01 - 01:56 PM

1, 3b, 5b, 7bb is correct for a diminished 7th. But 7bb isn't really close to a note in a 12 tone equal tmperament scale. Either (24/25) squared (double flat) times 15/8 (the 7th of the just intonation scale), or 6/5 cubed times the chord base frequency gives 1.728 times the chord base frequency for the last of the 4 notes of the diminished 7th chord.

In the 12 TET scale one has the 6th at 1.681792 times the chord base frequency, and 6#/7b at 1.781797 time the chord base frequency. The ideal note (1.728) is slightly closer to the 6th than the 6#/7b of the 12 TET scale, but neither choice is very good.


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: Mark Clark
Date: 13 Dec 01 - 07:32 PM

I didn't mean to cause any damage. <g> The reason I was asking specifically about F#7 was because of a post of mine in the most recent “As Time Goes By” thread. I constructed a diagram for F#7 using the Online Guitar Chord Dictionary and the diagram it returns isn't a valid diagram. While trying to figure out why—I finally decided it was an arbitrary omission—I realized that they always seem to spell F#7 as F# A C Eb and was simply curious as to the choice of names for the note I was calling D#.

A side benefit of the discussion, though, has been a thorough airing of the theory surrounding diminished seventh chords and the naming of notes in odd scales such as F# and Gb.

I think the discussion has been very helpful. Thanks to everyone who added to it and to Rick for starting this thread—although he had no intention of inviting such a discussion as this. <g>

      - Mark


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: M.Ted
Date: 13 Dec 01 - 02:20 PM

Oh, my head is spinning--Why are we talking about this using an F#dim--it makes it very hard to figure out examples!

First, note that F#-7b5 is a different chord than the Fdim(sorry, but everytime I try to hit the degree sign, it starts AOL Instant Messenger) One has an E, the other is a half step lower--

Second--the use of enharmonic note names is determined by the key that you are in(names of chords, too)--When you are in Ab for instance, the note is called Eb, but in the key of E, it is D#-in the naming of notes, it makes a difference whether the note is in the scale or not--you wouldn't call an D# an Eb in the key of E--

A couple things to keep in mind--at least as far as Leon White is concerned, his concern is that you understand what is expected when certain chord symbols appear in music, and what they indicate--on occasion, the symbols are not precisely right, for one reason or another--For instance, many times you will see a C-Edim-Dminor progression, when what is really wanted is C-C#dim-D minor, a small point, perhaps, but important to say, the person playing the bass line, whose part moves up from C by half steps--

Again, the rule is that the naming of notes and chords is based on the key signature, and it's related keys, so our F#-7b5 may be called an Am6 in another key, and those damned full diminished chords can each have, well, at least eight names each(A guess, I haven't time to figure it out right now)--

The critical thing to understand is that the chords changes really highlight motion in the melody, and the same chord, in a different key, provides a different kind of motion. A move from, say, G to F#dim is a completely different effect than from F to F#dim, and F# to F#dim is different again--


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: Mark Clark
Date: 12 Dec 01 - 09:07 PM

M.Ted, Yeah, I thought the A# looked like a typo. Someday when I've gone a year or two (or maybe even a day) without a typo, I'll start worrying about other people's typos. What is the quotation about getting the log out of my own eye before trying to remove the mote from someone else's. <g>

But I still have a question. You wrote:

First, I was writing about a different chord, F#A C E, which logically would be the F# dim7...

See, that's where I don't understand what you're trying to teach me. It seems clear to me—supported by two different authors—that the F# chord must be spelled F# A C (Eb or D#). If I understand Evans and Baker (quoted above) correctly, naming the note D# is the enharmonic spelling sometimes used for clarity instead of the more conventional Eb. In either case, the named note must be a minor third above C or a diminished third above C#, the perfect fifth above F#.

F# A C E must properly be called F#-7(b5) as follows. A is the minor third of F# making it a minor chord, E is the dominant seventh of F# making it an F#-7 (minor seventh) and since C# is the perfect fifth of F#, C must be the flatted fifth, ergo F#-7(b5).

But then you wrote:

In F#, you would probably write it as F# A C D#, which is to say, your sharps are in the key signature, so you'd put natural signs next to the A and the C--in F, with one flat in the key signature, you'd put a accidental sharp next to the F and an accidental flat next to the E--

which exactly agrees with my enharmonic spelling for F# and places each note a minor third above its predecessor.

I understand about the diminished triad occurring naturally in music without the diminished 7th. It's only by the convention of jazz and popular music that a diminished chord on a leadsheet is always assumed to refer to a diminished 7th. What I don't understand is a diminished 7th chord spelled with the diminished 7th note raised a half step to the dominant or minor 7th.

Where has my understanding gone awry?

      - Mark


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: M.Ted
Date: 12 Dec 01 - 05:25 PM

First, I was writing about a different chord, F#A C E, which logically would be the F# dim7-and then I wrote an A# where I meant A- mistake again--didn't mean to confuse--

As per the definitions above, even though a diminished chord features notes that are a minor third apart, because of the funny way that the note names in the scale are set up, it is not possible to spell them so that the notes reflect that--you have to squeeze the extra half step out somewhere, and that would vary, depending on which chord and which key you were using--

In F#, you would probably write it as F# A C D#, which is to say, your sharps are in the key signature, so you'd put natural signs next to the A and the C--in F, with one flat in the key signature, you'd put a accidental sharp next to the F and an accidental flat next to the E--

One thing to remember is that that in a major scale, the diminished triad does occur naturally, extending from the 7th step (B D F) but the four note diminshed chord(B D F Ab) has to be constructed with an out of scale note, written as an accidental--

This means that, in many cases where a diminished chord is used, the accompaniment actually passes into another key, and the notation has to reflect that-


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: Gary T
Date: 12 Dec 01 - 04:36 PM

Mark, thanks for the tip on the circle and other characters. That's good stuff to know.

I don't see a flatted third in M.Ted's post. I see A# twice, even when referring to the notes you posted. It may be a typo, but neither A# nor E are found in the chord you asked about. Without the flatted third, I wouldn't use the word "minor" in naming the chord. F sharp seventh flat five would make sense to me ("seventh" being understood to mean the flatted seventh note of the scale, as opposed to "major seventh" meaning the seventh note).


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: Mark Clark
Date: 12 Dec 01 - 04:05 PM

Gary T, you can make the little circle () by holding down the Alt key while typing 0176 on your numeric keypad. Another method is to click Start/Run, enter "charmap" and click OK. This will give you a lot of characters that aren't on the standard keyboard. If you click on the little circle (4 rows down directly under the zero) and look in the lower right-hand corner of the dialog box, you'll see the keyboard sequence that produces the character. You can also just copy the character and paste it into your text.

I must have been preparing my response while you were posting yours. I think the chord M.Ted was describing might properly be called F#-7(b5) or F sharp minor seventh flat five. Don't forget that he included the flatted third. Otherwise, as you can see, my analysis is similar to yours.

      - Mark


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: Mark Clark
Date: 12 Dec 01 - 03:32 PM

M.Ted, Thanks for your input, maybe one of these days I'll have it all straight.

Still, I think I need further explanation of your spelling for F# (F#dim7). I have understood diminished seventh chords to be spelled as tonic, flatted third, flatted fifth, flatted flatted [sic] seventh. One notable characteristic of the dim7 chord is that each note in the chord is a minor third from the note above and below it and, since that is true, a diminished seventh chord may be named for any one of the four notes it contains. For this reason, any given closed fingering for a diminished seventh chord played one fret higher, and then one more fret higher, will have produced some inversion of all possible diminished seventh chords.

Since E is the dominant seventh note of the F# scale, it must be flatted (diminished) for use in the F# chord. To quote Lee Evans and Martha Baker in their book “How to Play Chord Symbols in Jazz and Popular Music,”

A diminished chord is a chord built in minor 3rds from the root up, and appears in the leadsheets as any of the following chord symbols: C, C7, Cdim, Cdim7.

A diminished chord occurs most frequently in jazz and popular music as a four-note chord, as shown above, regardless of whether the symbol says C or C7. The 7th of the chord is a diminished 7th but is sometimes spelled as a major 6th. Enharmonic spellings are frequently used in jazz to facilitate reading, as seen in the following...

They go on to explain the harmonic spelling of C as C Eb Gb Bbb. In “The Musician's Guide To Harmony And Theory” by Leon White the author states:

When a MINOR interval is reduced one half step, the new resulting interval is also known as “DIMINISHED.” A to C is a Minor third. A to Cb is a Diminished third.

Since the interval from the perfect fifth to the dominant seventh is a minor third, I think that again argues for the diminished seventh being Eb in the F# scale. Mr. White also spells Cdim7 as C Eb Gb Bbb adding as a footnote, “This is a special chord with a double flatted 7th note: flatted two times, from B to Bb, and then from Bb to A.”

I'll be very interested in the explanation supporting the use of E in the F# chord.

      - Mark


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: Gary T
Date: 12 Dec 01 - 03:07 PM

I just spent some time looking at some chord resources on the internet (enter "diminished chord" into the box at Google).

One source showed a diminished chord to have three notes: 1, 3b, & 5b. However, others mentioned that a dimished 7th chord, which has four notes, can be written as Xdim, Xdim7, or X(little circle that I don't have on my keyboard). Mark's question, and my answer above, are both referring to the diminished 7th chord, even though he wrote F#dim7 and I wrote F#dim.

M.Ted's response above seems to be talking about an F#7 with a flatted 5th--F#7b5?

Now to the meat of Mark's question about naming the notes in F#dim:

The definition I saw for a dimished 7th chord is: 1, 3b, 5b, 7bb (that's note 7 double flatted). Even though note 7bb is the same as note 6 (in the F# major scale, D#), when we're talking about the dim chord the reference for this note is based on note 7 (in the F# major scale, E#), so it would be logical to use its name. Hence, F#-A-C-Eb is consistent with the theoretical derivation of the chord.


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: M.Ted
Date: 12 Dec 01 - 01:30 PM

The answer to Mark Clark's questions are 1) Whoever listed the F#dim7 as F#A#C Eb made a mistake, the note is an E not an Eb, so the chord would be F#A#C E--Eb(D# is the 6th of F#, and if you played a chord with that note in it, it would not be aF#dim7--and the note *would* be written as D#--so there is no problem here-

2)Yes, you can write in either the key F# or Gb--E# and Cb are OK to use, when you need to use them.The fact that are enharmonic with F and B doesn't make any difference--When you write in the F#, there are six sharps noted in the staff, which means that every note (except B)is played a half step higher than it would be in the C scale.

It isn't merely possible to write in F#, Irving Berlin wrote everything in the key of F#, leaving the transposition to others--given the quality of his work, it might be one of the best keys to write in--


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: GUEST
Date: 11 Dec 01 - 01:57 PM

Chords are defined by frequency ratios in a just intonation scale, and with a 12 tone equal tempered scale they don't always work out well. The 12TET approximation seems to be nowhere worse than for a diminished 7th where the ideal ratio is 1.20 between the notes. F# A C Eb is correct (366.67, 440, 2*264, 2*316.8 in just intonation)


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: Gary T
Date: 11 Dec 01 - 01:53 PM

Mark, you're probably technically right about the notes in F#dim. Possibly people write it the other way because in general, Eb gets mentioned a lot more often than D# does, and just springs to mind sooner.

I addressed your second question in a post above, as follows:

The key of F#/Gb is a bit trickier than the others. If you call it F#:

F#--G#--A#-B--C#--D#--F-F# or F#--G#--A#-B--C#--D#--E#(=F)--F#

You either have to use "F" twice and not use "E" or use E# to indicate F.

If you call it Gb:

Gb--Ab--Bb-B--Db--Eb--F-Gb or Gb--Ab--Bb-Cb(=B)--Db--Eb--F--Gb

You either use "B" twice and not use "C" or use Cb to indicate B.

I would say the second choice in each of the above is more technically correct, as the key signature will have either six sharps (F#) or six flats (Gb).


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: Mark Clark
Date: 11 Dec 01 - 12:13 PM

I realize this thread has an official continuation at “Your best musical advice in one post!,” but the new thread really has a different subject and I have a theory question that really doesn't fit in the continuation thread.

Why is the spelling of F#dim7 listed as F# A C Eb? I would have thought it should be F# A C D# because key signatures seem to contain either all sharps or all flats.

Of course a key called F# would have to have six sharps including E# (F) and a key called Gb would have to have six flats including Cb (B). Can there be major keys by those names?

      - Mark


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: Bert
Date: 09 Dec 01 - 02:13 PM

Rick, What was that thread you started about practicing with open tunings?


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: katlaughing
Date: 08 Dec 01 - 05:11 PM

I think I am on a "need to know" basis...read it all, played and sang all of my life and I still don't feel I need to know the whys and wherefores. HOWEVER, it IS fascinating and I HOPE, RICK, that you will go on with another progression to a new thread, as this one if getting rather long.**BG**

Thanks everyone!

kat


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: GUEST,Frank
Date: 08 Dec 01 - 04:44 PM

To compound the problem (this is why it's dangerous to talk about music without playing it) in Nashville recording studios they use arabic numerals to refer to chord positions rather than roman numerals.

Frank


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: GUEST,Night Owl
Date: 08 Dec 01 - 12:30 PM

whooops above post was mine......I MISS Loki!!!!


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: GUEST
Date: 08 Dec 01 - 12:29 PM

Just wanted to thank you all for the info here. I've been straight out with work etc. and haven't had time to sloooowly read. It's good to see OTHER students have an incomplete in Prof. Fielding's "starter" homework assignment on the guitar. Maybe today.....


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: Marion
Date: 06 Dec 01 - 07:04 PM

Gary wrote: " When referring to NOTES, use Arabic numerals--thus 1, 3, & 5 are the notes of a major (or tonic) chord. When referring to CHORDS, use Roman numerals--thus I, IV, & V are the chords in a typical three-chord song."

The spoken equivalent to this convention is to use ordinal numbers for notes or intervals, and cardinal numbers for chords. That is, in the key of C you would say that C major chord is the "one", F major is the "four", and G major is the "five"; whereas if you're talking about the chord C major then the C note is the "first" (or tonic), the E note is the "third", and the G note is the "fifth".

I also want to reiterate what Gary said about transposing: "You can also transpose a song's chords by moving EVERY chord up (or down--but not both) the SAME number of half steps. To go from Eb to C, everything would go down three half steps. To go from Eb to g, everything would up four half steps."

This is really simple, but it changed my life the day I realized I could transpose chord progressions just by moving everything up or down a certain number of semitones, just like I had learned to transpose melodies in my childhood piano days. This is really useful if you're too cool to use a capo or if you want to lower somehing slightly (i.e., to go from E to D you'd have to capo ten frets). It can also help you avoid chords that you don't like.

Marion

PS to Rick re: "The most irritating player in the world to me is the one who can play flashy complex leads, and still can't keep a solid rhythm."

You'd better not have still been thinking about me when you wrote this! I wasn't dropping a beat, you were adding one.


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: M.Ted
Date: 06 Dec 01 - 01:55 PM

To paraphrase someone, "I can't define dissonance, but I know it when I hear it"

Generally, when the term "dissonance" is used, it refers to any interval that is not part of a major/minor triad, or its inversions. The triad is based on the interval of either major or minor thirds, so seconds and sevenths would be "dissonant".

The problem, of course, is that there are dissonant sounding intervals within the diatonic triads--for instance, the interval between E and C, which is an augmented fifth--

Of course, this even ignores the fact that in some kinds of music, most notably Balkan music, the major second is a widely used harmony, and often, a melody will end on this interval.

In 20th Century Music, the term "dissonant" often refers to any music system(like Shoenberg's 12-tone system) that doesn't use major/minor triads as a basis.

Anyway, you don't really need the word, particular if you play folk music, so, "Fergedaboutit"--


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: GUEST,Frank
Date: 06 Dec 01 - 01:55 PM

1-3-5 designates the spelling of a major chord. I-IV-V is a chordal progression.

There is a difference between spelling an individual chord (ie: spelling an individual word) and fitting a chord into a chord progress (ie: fitting a word into a sentence).

It's important to keep these two functions separate.

1-3-5 are taken from the first, third and fifth note of a major scale.

I-IV-V are taken from triads (three note chords) built on each note of a major scale.

In a pure major scale (no alterations of the notes) the I chord will be a major chord. The IV chord will be a major chord. the V chord will be a major chord. The rest will all be minor chords or in the case of the chord built on the seventh note, that's a diminished chord. I-IV-V (major chords and traditionally used more than the others which are called "secondary chords". (Simplified general statement with lots of exceptions particularly in the world of jazz).

This being said, the best way to learn theory is to be able to hear it first. The best way to learn scales in every key is to be able to sing them. That's why every music theory course in school is taught with another along with it called ear training.

If you try to separate music theory from hearing it, it's bound to drive most people nuts. When I have taught it, I always insisted that the student was able to sing the chord, sing the scale, then find them on the instrument. It doesn't matter if you have a great voice or not but the best musicians regardless can sing what they play or write.

Best approach, take a musicianship course with a good teacher or enroll at a local community college.

Frank


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: Rick Fielding
Date: 06 Dec 01 - 12:14 PM

To the folks who did (and can do) "charts". I envy you! You can put in one picture, what I need a thousand (often confusing) words to describe. I use LOTS of charts in real life!

Cheers

Rick


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 06 Dec 01 - 06:22 AM

Night Owl

If we assume we're talking about "musical" noises, each "tone" (or note, or pitch) has (or is) a vibration at a particular frequency.

Any time that two "tones" mix together, you actually hear four pitches - or frequencies.

When you pluck a guitar string, you're actually making a "kink" in the string. When you turn it loose, that kink travels along the string, until it hits the bridge or the nut, where it is reflected, turns around, and runs back the other way on the string.

When the "kink" hits the bridge, it shakes it, and some of the "noise" gets out of the string and into the air - so you hear it.

If you pluck two strings at the same time, the "kinks" in the two strings may hit the bridge at the same time on one trip, but at different times on the next.

If the strings are tuned alike - to the same frequency - the kinks in the two strings stay the same distance apart as they travel back and forth, so they make the same "noise" everytime they get to the bridge.

If their tuned to different notes, they may arrive together one time and "add" to each other, or they may "arrive" going opposite directions, and cancel each other out.

Probably by coincidence - the frequency with which they go through the "add - subtract - back to add" cycle is the difference between the frequencies of the two strings.

Example: If one string is at A, 440 Hz, or 440 cycles per second, and the other is at A#, 466 Hz, or 460 cycles per second, 466 - 440 - 26 Hz. They will arrive at the bridge together 26 times per second, and you will "hear" each time this happens. Thus there is a "tone" at 26 Hz.

Probably because this tone is caused by the interference of one string's frequency whipping against the other against the other string's frequency, it's commonly called a "beat."

Since 26 Hz is also about 4 octaves down from the "notes" we usually play, it may be hard to recognize as a "tone," and you may hear it just as a "modulation" of the loudness of the other two original notes. It sounds like the notes "throb" - kinda like a heartbeat.

If you tune one of the strings so that they come closer together in pitch, the difference between the frequencies of the two strings decreases - so the "beat" note gets lower in pitch, or the perception that the note is "throbbing" decreases. When the two strings are tuned exactly the same, the "beat" frequency is zero - and a zero frequency don't make no noise.

The fourth note you hear (theoretically) happens because the bridge gets a shake whenever either of the strings slaps it. This happens once for each cycle of either string, so the "frequency" at which the bridge actually gets hit with something is the sum of the two string frequencies. In the example, 440 + 466 = 906 Hz. This "note" is up in the area where the "harmonics" of the original notes make things cluttered enough that it is very difficult for most people to "hear" the "upper beat" tone, although the "feeling that there's something there" can be used by most of us to adjust things until it sounds "better." That's called "tuning."

John


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: Night Owl
Date: 06 Dec 01 - 12:59 AM

Mary.."wholistic"???? "balanced"???? awwwww shucks ma'am.....thank you......I put the straws back in my desk. (Trying to keep a POSITIVE attitude here).

John-I want to make sure I understand this terminology. In your last post (THANKS btw) and only in THIS context, does "beat" equal "vibration"?? When I'm tuning, I hear the string dancing around the one I'm tuning to. I raise or lower the string until it stops "dancing". (Not sure if I've ever heard a third note in there.) Soooo, for THIS conversation do........dancing; vibration; beat; beat frequency.....all mean the same thing??

I also just noticed a neat thing you did Gary.....you put more advanced info in parentheses. If I ignore what's in the parentheses, I can grasp what you said. People with more knowledge can INCLUDE the info...pretty coool!!


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: marty D
Date: 05 Dec 01 - 11:30 PM

Gary T. Thank you. Your chart puts a lot of this all together. I've never been SCARED of theory Rick, but I sure was bored by it. I think I'm picking up some good things here.

Another reason to be glad for Mudcat.

marty


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: Big Mick
Date: 05 Dec 01 - 11:22 PM

One of the very best threads yet. I am devouring all of the wonderful information that you are all providing. Keep it coming!!

Way to go, Rick. I want you to give yourself a 100% increase in your salary from Fielding, Patterson, Swan and Lane, Layabouts at Large and For Hire.

All the best,

Mick


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: Mary in Kentucky
Date: 05 Dec 01 - 05:39 PM

Les, this is a VAST oversimplification, but I used it with piano students and could identify extreme cases of right/left brain thinkers.

THE TEST: Ask the student to count how many letters in the alphabet that rhyme with E. Then ask them to count how many letters that have a curved portion in the printed capital letter. There is no right or wrong answer, just ask them which process is easier. Left brain people like the rhyming better, right brain people like visualizing the letters better.

As far as your question, I think if the student is aware of differences in ease of learning, they can identify what helps them most.

IN TEACHING: Left brain people read well and are sequential in their thinking. (like my husband, disgustingly logical, one track mind!) They can learn from explanations and sheet music. They often need more help with flow, timing, expression; feeling the music.

Right brain people are more wholistic and what I call divergent (in computer jargon, random access) thinkers. They can multitask. They often learn better by feeling the chord shapes and imitating what they hear. Sometimes they are poor readers. They can transpose just by moving the pattern or shape of the notes to another place on the keyboard or fret. They often understand a melody as chord chunks played one note at a time.

I like to first learn (and teach) using the preferred or dominant learning style. Then later reinforce or strengthen weaknesses with familiar material.

Remember, this is a VAST oversimplification. Most of us are pretty much balanced in our right/left brain preferences. Then there are other types of learning styles: kinesthetic, aural, visual, etc. A good teacher uses all the tricks. As a student, I like Socrates' advice: KNOW THYSELF


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: GUEST,Les B
Date: 05 Dec 01 - 04:07 PM

Sorry, my computer has a mind of its own today!!

What I started to type was; Is there any way - using a guitar & a series of chords, perhaps - to identify the different kinds of learners ?? Those who have to hear, or be told first, or feel it under their fingers ?

It seems like there would be a simple little musical exercise that would sort this out, and then you'd know which approach to take. (of course there's probably a "paper & pencil" test that does this easily!)


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 05 Dec 01 - 11:45 AM

Night Owl

Re the tuning thing: yes - when it's in tune it sounds better.

The "dissonance" is a characteristic of the sound. What makes it "dissonant" is the presence of a "beat" between two notes that is in an "unfriendly" frequency range.
If you fret one string to the same "note" as the adjacent open string and play them together, you hear an additional note - the difference between the two you played - that shouldn't be there. You can exagerate this by "mistuning" them a little, just to see if you can recognize the "beat frequency."

When you are in tune, the difference frequency is zero - and the "bad noise" goes away.

The whole of our "Scale Systems" is actually based on using only those "notes" that don't produce noticeable "beats" when played together. But that's Physics, and we probably don't want to talk about that here yet.

John


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: Night Owl
Date: 05 Dec 01 - 02:50 AM

yes, Mary??? You remember how to make them?? bg

I'm so focused on trying to learn here, it didn't occur to me, until after reading Joan's post, that teachers may need help to teach. This hopefully will be brief and helpful.

I learned to play guitar in college by watching, listening and playing with other people. I learned AFTER I heard the music, felt it and fell in love with it.

My brother was learning to play guitar at the same time, by taking "Music Theory" classes at MIT in Cambridge. He was "labeled" early in life as having a "genius" IQ, received scholarships to MIT, got his degree as an Electrical Engineer and later became staff in the computor labs there.

We were both new to the music and played our guitars together during holiday visits and school breaks. I came home one year with a 12 string guitar and had JUST learned to play "San Francisco Bay Blues" on it....excited about how the bass runs I was doing in the song SOUNDED. He stopped me and asked "why" I did something.(still no clue what) and had me slow the song down. He then informed me that I had added something in the beginning of the song, and "theoretically" it made no sense. He taped my playing and back we went to our respective schools.

About a week later, I received a phone call from him, telling me that he had figured out how I "got away" with what I was doing. Evidently, later in the song I omitted something to make up for what I had stuck into it at the beginning...so I ended in the right place.

It took him years to FEEL the "heart" in the music.

This is already wayyy to long a post for this thread, but I found it sad to think learning to play music for him was another Mathematical challenge that required solving. But that was HIS truth and the way he learned..mathematically and theoretically, pages of equations, paper etc. My truth, I think, is that I need to hear it, and see it...and this little Casio keyboard I have here is helping a LOT to understand a bit of the stuff in this thread.

Apologies for being long-winded...


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: Gary T
Date: 05 Dec 01 - 01:57 AM

Before we move on to chord progressions, let's review (oh, what fun!).

We know that our music (music of Western civilization, as opposed to say, much Oriental music) is based on certain tones which, by definition, comprise the notes of the chromatic scale.

From those notes, certain groups can be selected by a set formula to form major scales.

From the notes of a given major scale (and other notes defined in relation to that scale--for example, the flatted 3rd note used in a minor chord), we can form various chords, each of which has its own formula or definition.

Okay, so now we got all these chords, what do we do with them? Lay down the framework for songs and tunes.

In discussing chords, we can save a lot of effort by using a number system that applies to any key, rather than talking about each of the twelve possible keys individually. We numbered the major scale with Arabic numerals to talk about the notes used to form chords. Now we'll number it with Roman numerals to talk about chords themselves.

Let's look at our good friend, the C major scale.

C D E F G A B C

The notes of this scale can be numbered thus:

 C  D  E  F  G  A  B  C
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 1 (or 8, if continuing)

If I mention 1, 3, 5, it means those NOTES, which can form a chord.

Now we're going to number it this way:

 C   D   E   F   G   A   B   C
I II III IV V VI VII I (no need to ever go above VII)

Now, if I were to mention I, III, and V, it would mean a C chord, an E chord, and a G chord. We know that each of those chords is made up of several notes taken from the C, E, and G scales, respectively, but we're not talking about those notes. We're referring to the chords themselves.

Now "3" and "III" are both forms of "three", and obviously based on the fact that E is the third note of scale here. But other than that, the "3" and the "III" have nothing to do with each other. One's a note, the other's a chord. Apples, oranges. When I talk about chords as units, rather than about the notes used to construct chords, I use Roman numerals. When I use Roman numerals, I'm talking about chords.

A jillion songs use the I, IV, & V (or V7) chords. On Top of Old Smokey, Amazing Grace, Oh Suzannah, etc., etc. etc. In folk, bluegrass, and country music, it's by far the most common grouping of chords. These songs are the "three chorders."

A lesser number use I & IV (Wild Mountain Thyme), or I & V(7) (Short'nin Bread).

There are lots of typical chord groupings that are used in a great number of songs. Some of these are:

I-VIm-IV-V(7)--classic "doo wop" progression--Silhouettes, Santa Catalina

I-IIm-V7--Don't It Make You Want To Go Home

I-VI7-II7-V7--classic ragtime--Salty Dog

I-VIIb--Old Joe Clark, Little Maggie

That's just a tiny sample. There are booklets available that listen many common chord progression.

So why talk about, say, I, IV, & V? You can't play a "IV" on an instrument--you can play a C chord, or a D chord, or an A chord, but what's a IV chord?

Talking about these numbers helps you see patterns. Grasping patterns helps to make sense out of things.

Say you usually play a song in the key of C, and the chords are C, F, & G. Someone says they're going to play that song now, in the key of G. What are the chords to play along in G?

In the key of C, C is the I chord, F is the IV chord, and G is the V chord. The G scale is:

 G   A   B   C   D   E   F#   G
I II III IV V VI VII I

The I chord is G, the IV chord is C, the V chord is D. So this song uses the chords G, C, & D.

Any song can be played in any chosen key. If it uses I, IV, & V in one key, it will use I, IV, & V in every other key, and in the same respective places in the song. You can transpose it to any desired key so long as you know the scales of the "from" key and the "to" key.

Say you have a book that shows chords for a certain song, as follows:

Eb, Gm, Cm, Bb, Ab, Bb, Eb

This is almost certainly in the key of Eb (the I chord is the first chord in a song more than half the time, and the last chord more than 95% of the time). Suppose your vocal range, or the fact that you play guitar, or the fact that you have an autoharp without half of those chords, dictates that you do it in the key of C or G. Just look at the scales:

 I   II  III IV  V   VI  VII I
Eb F G Ab Bb C D Eb
C D E F G A B C
G A B C D E F# G

The sequence is I, IIIm, VIm, V, IV, V, I.
In Eb, that's...Eb, Gm, Cm, Bb, Ab, Bb, Eb.
In C, that's....C, Em, Am, G, F, G, C.
In G, that's....G, Bm, Em, D, C, D, G.

You can also transpose a song's chords by moving EVERY chord up (or down--but not both) the SAME number of half steps. To go from Eb to C, everything would go down three half steps. To go from Eb to g, everything would up four half steps. You don't need to know the keys involved to do this, but knowing them could help ensure you get into the right key with one attempt.

This may sound tedious, but I suggest charting out a number of songs you currently do and identifying the chord sequence with Roman numerals. Do it with songs in various keys. I'll bet you start to see some patterns in terms of the chords used (not necessarily the exact order of the chords, but the selection of chords in the piece). Keep an eye out for these patterns, especially in songs you run across in oddball keys. When various patterns start becoming second nature, things tend to get a lot easier to understand and work with.

Here's a chart of chords commonly found in songs and tunes, along with the actual chords in the keys of C and A. These are in roughly estimated order of frequency of use in popular styles of music:

 I IV V V7 I7 VIm IIm IIIm II7 VI7 III7 IVm VIIb IIIb VIb
C F G G7 C7 Am Dm Em D7 A7 E7 Fm Bb Eb Ab
A D E E7 A7 F#m Bm C#m B7 F#7 C#7 Dm G C F

Sometimes if I'm trying to work out a song's chords by ear, and the more common choices don't fit, going through a chart like this helps me find the right chord.

Next--tying it all together with the cycle of fifths.


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: GUEST,Joan
Date: 04 Dec 01 - 08:44 PM

What a good thread!!

Great to see theory laid out so clearly with explanations of why we play what we play. I'd taught guitar (with theory in small, easy-to-swallow doses) for years. It took me a while to understand about the different learning styles of the people who came for lessons: the kinesthetic and global learners who must feel the chord shapes with their fingers, do the right hand picking, and listen to the sounds they make. Then there are those who do best with methodical step-by-step instruction and charts, who only THEN can go on to play.

Vive la difference!


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: Mary in Kentucky
Date: 04 Dec 01 - 04:34 PM

Mow Night Owl, algebra isn't a dirty word. A really dirty word is trigonometry or...calculus!

I have a theory that nearly any discipline can be understood on some level once the vocabulary is familiar. The concepts in algebra or chemistry or polymers or music are really simple...it's just the vocabulary that inhibits our thinking. And if you're intellectually curious (and patient) the vocabulary becomes familiar with time.

Knowing a little jargon certainly doesn't subsitute for real understanding, but it's up to you to realize your limitations. Now about those spitballs...


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: Night Owl
Date: 04 Dec 01 - 03:39 PM

whoooops sorry...JoHn


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: Night Owl
Date: 04 Dec 01 - 03:33 PM

Thanks Jon......I missed your post while I was typing here. I'm gonna repeat back what you said..HOPEFULLY!

When I'm tuning my guitar,I can hear when the "vibrations" (note) is right on or not (usually..bg) When the string is tuned, there is NO "dissonance" right??


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: Night Owl
Date: 04 Dec 01 - 03:07 PM

Thanks for the giggle here Gary!!! What IS clear is that you said "Good thinking. That works". Enough for me..the rest looks tooooooo much like Algebra!!! (I must not chew gum in class...I must not chew gum in class.........I must pay attention in class......I must NOT let my imagination run wild in class...I must NOT play with the squirrels.) bg

btw....just read your apology above. Just because some of the information posted in here is over my head, does NOT invalidate the info itself. I CAN recognize some GOOD info here and will harvest it IF and WHEN I can accept it as English!!! I'm sure there are others reading who DO understand more than I can now. and even the stuff I don't understand is interesting to read - different approaches and corrections. Some of the posts I want to understand NOW......but haven't even done my homework on the guitar yet. ( Anyone got a straw??) Thank you ALL again!!!


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 04 Dec 01 - 02:25 PM

Night Owl

For working purposes, you've got it right. A dissonance is simply two notes that don't sound good together.

When you play two notes together, you will usually hear the two notes and also two other notes - one with a frequency equal to the sum of the original two frequencies and one with a frequency equal to the difference between the original two.

The difference frequency is usually perceived most clearly - and is the "beat" many folk use to tune one string to the other.

If the "beat" frequency doesn't fit with the original two notes - it sounds bad. As an example, an A at 440 Hz and an A# at 466 Hz will produce a beat at 26 Hz - which is fairly strongly perceived, and "it don't sound right." Hence the half-step interval is dissonant.

John


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: Gary T
Date: 04 Dec 01 - 02:10 PM

Night Owl--RE the 8 note which for some reason is a problem here. I had decided that I would just translate it to 8/1 to help absorb some of this info.

Good thinking. That works.

Gary...are you saying it would be 1b for the high do instead of my 8/1??

Actually, if you say 1-7, then 1a-7a, then 1b-7b, the 8/1 would be 1a and the 1b could be 15/1. I hope that's clear.


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: Night Owl
Date: 04 Dec 01 - 02:01 PM

Thank you Mary and MTed for the SIMPLE explanations!! My ear and heart in the music understands EXACTLY what you said...and it's encouraging to know it's there just because it SOUNDS good and wants to be...(right??) Could you just give a brief definition of what "dissonance" means?? I thought it was the sound I hear when I hit a wrong note and it clashes against a prior note. A negative thing!!

Mary..can we make a "rule" here?? NEVER, never mention the word "Algebra". lol

RE the 8 note which for some reason is a problem here. I had decided that I would just translate it to 8/1 to help absorb some of this info. Gary...are you saying it would be 1b for the high do instead of my 8/1?? If so, works for me!

Rog....I have a box of kleenex in my desk here. I just moved my seat away from the window cause I started watching a squirrel play in a tree. Blow your nose and take my seat there. Anyone remember how to make spitballs??


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: Gary T
Date: 04 Dec 01 - 01:49 PM

M.Ted, more confusing is quite the opposite of my intent, so thanks for the alert.

I'm trying to keep things in the realm of what I believe the average person can find practical application for, which I think was Rick's intent. As you may have figured, I really don't know music theory, which you and some others apparently do know rather well. But I do have a working knowledge of some basic conventions and definitions "on paper" (hence loosely referred to as theory) that have helped me do things with my instrument. I hope sharing what I know will likewise be helpful to others.

In the matter of using a V chord vs. a V7 chord, I don't doubt that there are technical and theoretical considerations that apply in many instances, and I imagine composers give it careful thought. My approach was related to my experience in jams and song circles with other amateur musicians, where the basic I-IV-V song is sometimes done with a V, sometimes with a V7, and more often than not with no obvious or compelling difference between the two. I often feel that one is preferrable to the other when I listen closely, but the songs seem to flow as well either way, so I don't see it as a significant point in those circumstances. I was not attempting to actually say why a V7 might be called for rather than a V, and I apologize if I muddied up that issure.

I am aware that there are an infinite number of possible notes between B and C, but I was referring to there not being a piano key or a guitar fret that produces such notes.

So there's my rationale. I don't hold to be an expert. I'm trying to keep things fairly simple in the hopes others can get their heads around the basics. I certainly don't want to give wrong, misleading, or counterproductive information. Feel free to keep me honest.


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: English Jon
Date: 04 Dec 01 - 12:29 PM

The whole I, IV, V is slightly bogus anyway.

I, II, V is more reasonable, as II is V of V, hence perpetuating the tonic/dominant relationship.

(Note that II is the equivalent minor of IV)

Instant calypso...

EJ


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: M.Ted
Date: 04 Dec 01 - 12:17 PM

If you are looking up these things, trying to interpret them, and then passing them on, Gary, I think you have to be very careful not to overstep what you understand--You have made some good points, but you have also said a number of things that, if not exactly wrong, are not exactly right either--

There is a difference between situations that use a V chord, and situations where a V7 chord is used--often, the V is followed by a V7--Any song whose melody falls within a diatonic major scale(The C scale, for instance) is a three chord song, because an accompaniment can always be written using only three chords--the I,IV, and V. the IV7 and IVm technically take you into another key--Not that you can't use these things alternately as a matter of taste, but that they have rules and reasons--

For that matter, there *are* notes between E and F and B and C, but the reason that there are half spaces in two places in the scale simply is that if you use all whole steps, you only get six notes to the octave, and no perfect fifth or fourth--

Anyway, and this should extend to everyone, don't speculate on things that you aren't sure of in your explanations, because it only makes things more confusing--


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: English Jon
Date: 04 Dec 01 - 10:25 AM

...that's because I to IV is the same relationship as V-I.

Hence I (in C is CEG) + 7 =CEGBb, the Bb wants to resolve to the 3 (A) in IV (FAC)

Or:

I (in G is GBD) + 7 =GBDF, the F wants to resolve to the 3 (E) in IV (CEG)

Cycle of fifths again.

It still sounds crap

EJ


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: Gary T
Date: 04 Dec 01 - 10:03 AM

I'm still planning to post on chord progressions, when I have a long enough block of time to do so--should be soon.

But for now, I'll tie up a few loose ends and address a few questions that have been raised.

I did see a book that used the terminology X minor major seventh chord, written Xmin(maj7). Means the same thing as X minor sharp seventh--Xmin#7.

I don't know if the 11th and 13th chords I talked about earlier lack certain notes because that's the definition of the chord or because the book I was looking at was accomodating the fact that guitars offer a maximum of six different notes. I'm sure there are texts that have the info, for those who are curious. The main point in my mentioning those chords was that they (and 9th chords) are built on 7th chords. Sometimes a plain old 7th chord is a reasonable substitution for a 9th, 11th, or 13th chord. Other times it's not satisfactory--trust your ear.

Now, about that #8 note:

It's significant in terms of an octave (A to A, C to C, Db to Db, etc.)--our word octave stems from the Latin word for eight. "Do-re-mi-etc." back to "do" comprises eight notes.

In 9th, 11th, & 13th chords, you're obviously going to pass 8 on your way to those numbers, so you've got to have a #8 note.

BUT--in terms of major, minor, seventh, suspended, diminished, etc. chords, it's just a repeat of note #1. Another way to look at a C scale is this:

 C  D  E  F  G  A  B  C  D  E  F  G  A  B  C  D  etc.
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 1 2 etc.

Sometimes you'll see the second course labeled "1a, 2a," etc. and the third course "1b, 2b," etc. This is because they are different notes--that second C is a higher pitch than the first C. But for our purposes, we're concerned about the essential character of its being a C, rather than a D or an E.

In an earlier post, I mentioned that a typical guitar F chord has the notes F, C, F, A, C, F. The important thing is that the F major chord has the notes F, A, & C (notes 1, 3, & 5 of the F scale) and ONLY those notes. Whether it has one, or two, or three F notes (or A notes or C notes) doesn't really matter. It's still an F major chord. You could call the F notes in that chord 1, 8, & 15, which is technically correct, but for our purposes irrelevant. Look at the seven different notes of the scale, look at the definition of the chord in question, and select notes with the correct note name. For most chords, there is no need to count above 7.

Some mention has been made of the fact that there are no notes between B & C or between E & F, while there is a note (black piano key) between A & B, C & D, etc. Well, here's the explanation:

Because.

I'm sure there's a history of music text that explains how and why this came to be, but in terms of practical application, there is no more definitive nor satisfying answer than--because. That's the way it is, it ain't gonna change, we just gotta learn it and deal with it.

Now, about that V or V7 chord:

When a three chord song is said to have the I, IV, & V chords, those numbers are often meant in a general sense. It might have a I, I7, IV, IV7, IVm, V, V7--the point is it has a I-something chord, a IV-something chord, and a V-something chord.

In a great many songs found in folk, Irish, bluegrass, country, etc. music, it really doesn't matter much whether it's a V or a V7. I notice that bluegrassers hardly ever use seventh chords, whereas folksingers use them a fair amount. You can even find that one book use the V chord in a given song where the next book uses a V7. So often, either one is fine, and it comes down to personal preference.

Sometimes, using the seventh chord is significant. Play I--I7--IV (in C, C--C7--F), and you'll see that it's just not the same as playing I--I--IV. And in blues, often the IV7 is used instead of IV, and sometimes even I7 instead of I. Other blues patterns use V7 in the main phrasing, but use a V as a turnaround between verses. These uses of seventh vs. major chords are part of the character we associate with blues music, so it can matter which one we use.

These distinctions tend to become easier to pick up with experience.


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: English Jon
Date: 04 Dec 01 - 08:44 AM

7 of V resolves downwards to 3 of I

Hence, G7 - C, the F in the G7 chord has a strong harmonic pull towards the E in the C chord.

Sounds crap though.

EJ


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: M.Ted
Date: 04 Dec 01 - 08:42 AM

Nightowl,

Yes, there is a simple explanation, and that is that the G7(G-B-D-F) chord has tension in it that can be resolved only by moving back to the C (C-E-G). The tension is a strong dissonance between the G and the F in the chord.

If you don't understand what I mean, just play the two chords--Play C, and it sounds like you can stay on C--Play G and it sounds like you need to go somewhere.

This tension/resolution is a basic element in music. In classical western music(and in western folk music), we resolve it in by moving back to the fundamental (C).

Some composers a long time ago liked working with musical tension in this way, and so almost all of our music is built around it--it isn't the only way you can do it, and other musical traditions do things differently(though they still work with the tension/resolution thing).

That is music theory.


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: Mary in Kentucky
Date: 04 Dec 01 - 08:37 AM

Now Roger, I taught teenagers algebra, so I know you can learn a little music! As I told my sister when she was taking algebra, the first thing to do is to NOT THROW THE BOOK ACROSS THE ROOM when you first read an explanation.

Night Owl, in the key of C, the G chord IS the V (Five) chord. We use the V7 because it sounds good. Correct me here historians if this explanation is not quite right...historically people just started using what sounded good and then it got to be familiar to them they continued to use it. (Western music). I taught beginning piano students (even 4 year-olds) how to play the tonic chord then the V7 chord in the first 6 easy keys so they could play "Mary Had a Little Lamb" in 6 different keys. (In the key of C, the tonic chord is just the home chord, C...and the V7 chord is the G7 chord) I would also tell them to "drive Mom crazy" by playing a V7 chord and then walking away from the piano. It seems that our ear wants to hear it "resolve" or go to the home/tonic chord after it's played.

Hang in there. This stuff makes sense as we hear it explained in different words again and again.


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Subject: RE: Scared of Music theory? Faggggedaboudit!
From: GUEST,Roger the skiffler
Date: 04 Dec 01 - 04:11 AM

(sobbing quietly in a corner) Before I read this I thought I'd never understand music theory. Now I know I never will.
RtS (back to the kazoo, I guess)


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