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-   -   is there a formula to determine what key a chord progression is? (https://www.ultimate-guitar.com/forum/showthread.php?t=229763)

 Punk as atticus 07-05-2005 05:01 PM

is there a formula to determine what key a chord progression is?

also is there a way i can with like a riff or solo? and could you give examples w/scales too? sry i'm trying to get oriented w/all of this theory to actually get better. other words, tell me everything on tht.

 NowTheWorld 07-05-2005 05:14 PM

take the notes of each chord (in most cases it'll be a triad of root, 3rd and 5th) and see what scale all the notes fit into

 Corwinoid 07-05-2005 05:19 PM

^ How tedius.

Generally whatever the progression resolves to (finishes on) is the key. It's that simple 99.9% of the time.

 slash_pwns 07-05-2005 05:20 PM

Don't forget to look for a V7.

 low_slinger 07-07-2005 01:50 PM

 `NeXxuS` 07-07-2005 06:45 PM

Quote:
 Originally posted by Corwinoid ^ How tedius. Generally whatever the progression resolves to (finishes on) is the key. It's that simple 99.9% of the time.

it doesnt take that long...

i do it that way... the more you get used to it the faster it goes... i generally dont trust your method...

it works... but i think about that .1%

 UnderTheGroove 07-07-2005 07:01 PM

Look at the chords in the progression and plug them into the harmonized major scale. Here are the chord types and distances between the root notes:

1 chord = Maj
(w)
2 chord = min
(w)
3 chord = min
(h)
4 chord = Maj
(w)
5 chord = Maj (dom7)
(w)
6 chord = min
(w)
7 chord = dim
(h)
1 chord

The major scale formula (Whole steps and Half steps):

1 (w) 2 (w) 3 (h) 4 (w) 5 (w) 6 (w) 7 (h) 1

Look at the intervals between the root notes of the chords and the chord types. Using the two patterns above you can figure out the key of the music.

Also realize that some songs use chords from outside of the key, or switch to different keys.

 Zamboni 07-07-2005 07:18 PM

Quote:
 Originally posted by low_slinger how bout your ear?

How 'bout that's the fucking cheap way out. How 'bout you try and learn something and better yourself instead of relying of guessing and checking.

 `NeXxuS` 07-07-2005 07:38 PM

^mmm no, its actually good exercise... its in no way a cheap way out.

 Zamboni 07-07-2005 07:41 PM

^ Of course it is. I don't consider guessing at what sounds good to be a good way of doing things.

That's like saying: Oh, I'm going to build this bridge the way I think it looks good, and if it falls, hey, it looked good!

It'll catch up with you soon if you don't know why certain things sound good together.

 `NeXxuS` 07-07-2005 07:43 PM

yes ok... lets just stick to the textbook then...

seriously music is more about you ear, and what sounds good than it is theory...

and anyone who has trained in theory will attest to that.

honestly, would you rather write something thats theoretically sound... or something that kicks absolute ****ing ass...

IMHO a musical ear > all the music theory in the world.

 Zamboni 07-07-2005 07:47 PM

Yes, music is about your ear. But what you don't realize is that your ear picks certain things up BECAUSE of theory. The theory behind music explains why it sounds good.

 Zamboni 07-07-2005 07:48 PM

Quote:
 Originally posted by `NeXxuS` honestly, would you rather right something thats theoretically sound... or something that kicks absolute ****ing ass...

Oh. My. God.

The REASON it would kick ass, is BECAUSE it is theoretically sound. Holy christ, is that such a hard concept?

 `NeXxuS` 07-07-2005 07:51 PM

wrong.

the reason it would kick ass is because it sounds good...

i know John Petrucci for example likes to throw alot of chromatic runs over top of his ****... now a chromatic run is not theoretically sound over top of a progression that is not chromatic correct? but it sounds ****ing awesome....

someone help me out here, and explain to this kid, that you dont have to follow theory... in fact you should strive to be able to break the rules youve learned after you have learned them.

EDIT: Alot of players are baffled by composers like paganini and Petrucci, who use alot of chromatics in their work... the truth is that all they are doing is using their ears... you gotta experiment to be able to do it.

 Zamboni 07-07-2005 07:59 PM

Quote:
 Originally posted by `NeXxuS` wrong. the reason it would kick ass is because it sounds good... i know John Petrucci for example likes to throw alot of chromatic runs over top of his ****... now a chromatic run is not theoretically sound over top of a progression that is not chromatic correct? but it sounds ****ing awesome.... someone help me out here, and explain to this kid, that you dont have to follow theory... in fact you should strive to be able to break the rules youve learned after you have learned them. EDIT: Alot of players are baffled by composers like paganini and Petrucci, who use alot of chromatics in their work... the truth is that all they are doing is using their ears... you gotta experiment to be able to do it.

I'm not even going to argue with you anymore. You're obviously too ignorant to realize that writing with theory doesn't necessarily mean: OK, I have a Cm7b5 chord, I MUST solo to it in Locrian.

It means, that you KNOW how to write music that sounds good, because you KNOW what sounds good together. You KNOW that: OK, here, in this part of the song, I will change key quickly and go back into key, and just slightly adjust my solo by adding a flat 3rd, etc. etc.

Theory doesn't mean sticking to the rules, it means knowing when you can break the rules effectively and efficiently to make a good song.

 `NeXxuS` 07-07-2005 08:04 PM

you dont need theory to write a good song...

take DIMEBAG ****ING DARRELL for instance... he knew no theory, yet owned his guitar... why? because he spent years training his ear... not studying scales.

 Zamboni 07-07-2005 08:06 PM

^ That doesn't mean he was worth shit as a musician. Any fucking monkey can pick up a guitar and practice picking a scale fast, but it takes a MUSICIAN to realize what and why he does things.

And yes, theory does assist in writing good songs.

 `NeXxuS` 07-07-2005 08:08 PM

ugh, your missing the point entirely...

im not saying that theory doesnt assist you... it sure as **** does if you learn it...

but if you dont learn it... its not a big deal... you can write just as good songs using your ear...

and insulting dimebag darrell's musicianship? you ARE ignorant...

and btw... dime didnt know he was picking a scale fast... all he knew was he was hitting some good notes fast... he didnt have any clue about scales.

 donnie_darko14 07-07-2005 08:24 PM

both are equally needed to write a song

-DD :cheers:

 Corwinoid 07-07-2005 08:26 PM

NeXxus, you wouldn't know that .1% if it kicked you in the nuts while eating out your sister.

Chromatic runs are indeed theoretically sound. *yawn* Indeed... paganini was using his ear when writing chromatic runs for an entire orchestra. Real ****ing bright. And Rachmoninoff wasn't thinking about how each note was acting when he wrote 5 minutes of music based mostly on halfsteps, I'm sure.

You are the epitamy of the little kids who know a few scales and think they understand theory. LOLZ OMGZ STAY IN KEYZ DEWD, AND BREK TEH ROOLZ!! Right?

Yes... let's take DIMEBAG FUCKING DARREL for instance. The man was a great guitarist. Absolutely **** song writer.

If I asked 99.9 of the guitarists in the world when C# was in the key of C (and indeed, it sometimes is), I'll get a wrong answer in response. Or even better, what's a Neopolitan 6th, and when do you want to use it?

Most guitarists have **** clue about sound construction; and it shows in the complete lack of depth in the music they write. LOLZ, y wud u evr want a clarnut in a song? Uhh, wut hpnz if my bass is higher than my gutars?

DUD F IT DUSNT HAV 6 STRINGS AND A TUNIN PEG TEN IT DUSNT MAK MUSCI!!!!!!!

Right?

And I'll bet you're one of those people that bitch about pop music sucking also.

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