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Old 10-06-2013, 08:16 PM   #1
nignog
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Quick question about modes (to see if I have it down correclty)

Yes, I've read the sticky. I've watched and read through plenty of written tutorials to understanding modes, and I think I've only gotten pieces here and there, but not the full picture. Back when I took lessons years ago, I understood how certain chord progressions fit into a modal chord progression; but I still have yet to understand how a scale fits into any of this. So my question is, if I'm playing to the root of A minor, would playing the diatonic scale in A minor starting and ending on a different part of the scale (essentially ignoring the tonic of the scale entirely) be playing in a modal manner? Playing any of the 7 modal shapes starting and ending on the root to a preconstructed chord progression just sounds awful (because I'm definitely doing it wrong).

Any help would be great. Thanks.
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Old 10-06-2013, 08:37 PM   #2
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^^^ The mode sticky is not very good. If you play the notes of an A minor scale over the key of A minor, you'll be playing the A minor scale irrespective of what note you start or end on.

Can you listen to a song and identify the key?
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Old 10-06-2013, 09:00 PM   #3
nignog
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AlanHB
^^^ The mode sticky is not very good. If you play the notes of an A minor scale over the key of A minor, you'll be playing the A minor scale irrespective of what note you start or end on.

Can you listen to a song and identify the key?

I can identify what key and major/minor instantly. I would have a harder time distinguishing as to which mode the progression is structured around until I had a few minutes to figure it out. I hope I answered your question properly.
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Old 10-06-2013, 09:20 PM   #4
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Cool stuff. I wrote this blog http://profile.ultimate-guitar.com/AlanHB/blog/100719/ which may help you.
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Old 10-06-2013, 09:58 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by AlanHB
Cool stuff. I wrote this blog http://profile.ultimate-guitar.com/AlanHB/blog/100719/ which may help you.


Dude, THAT should be in the sticky. That is the best I've seen anyone explain the problems people have with modes. I've tried explaining that to a few people and always have a hard time and eventually give up. I will be bookmarking that for future use.
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Old 10-07-2013, 03:23 AM   #6
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Why don't you read what satriani says about modes:
http://www.desktopmetronome.com/c5/...ory-for-guitar/
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Old 10-07-2013, 04:59 AM   #7
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^ I didn't read all the details in the article but what I didn't like was that it said D dorian is C major scale that starts with D. And that's what confuses many people. It doesn't matter which of the notes "starts" the scale (and that's why TS is confused - he thought that if he played C major scale and ended it with a D note, he was playing D dorian scale which is not true - it's all about the chords you are playing over). You can play the notes in any order and it's still the same scale. What matters is what chords you are playing over. If you play the D dorian scale over a C major chord progression, what you are actually playing is C major scale. It won't even sound like D dorian, it will sound like C major. If you want to play D dorian scale, you need to play it over a progression that resolves to D. I wouldn't think D dorian scale as C major scale that starts with D but rather as D minor scale with a major 6th (B) instead of a minor 6th (Bb).

In the article it said: "One day, back when was in my first year of music college, I was taking a piano lesson when my teacher and I came to a particular section of improvisation. I said, “This is in the A Dorian mode.” My teacher said, “Well, it’s really the same as playing in G major,” but I disagreed. I said that if I’m playing in A Dorian, I’ll emphasize the notes differently than if I were thinking G major."

I'm not sure if Satch or the teacher was right. If the chord progression was in G major, the teacher was right. But if the chord progression was something like Am-D or Am-Bm, Satch was right, it is not in G major. But Satch says he's thinking in A dorian... I don't know. It is true that playing in A dorian is different than playing in G major. But I don't know about the situation. Satch didn't say what chords he was playing over and he doesn't even talk about chords in the article which IMO is not a good thing. Because the chords you are playing over pretty much define the function of the notes you are playing.
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Last edited by MaggaraMarine : 10-07-2013 at 05:01 AM.
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Old 10-07-2013, 05:48 AM   #8
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Getting a virus alert when I click on that article.
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Old 10-08-2013, 02:12 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MaggaraMarine
^ I didn't read all the details in the article but what I didn't like was that it said D dorian is C major scale that starts with D. And that's what confuses many people. It doesn't matter which of the notes "starts" the scale (and that's why TS is confused - he thought that if he played C major scale and ended it with a D note, he was playing D dorian scale which is not true - it's all about the chords you are playing over). You can play the notes in any order and it's still the same scale. What matters is what chords you are playing over. If you play the D dorian scale over a C major chord progression, what you are actually playing is C major scale. It won't even sound like D dorian, it will sound like C major. If you want to play D dorian scale, you need to play it over a progression that resolves to D. I wouldn't think D dorian scale as C major scale that starts with D but rather as D minor scale with a major 6th (B) instead of a minor 6th (Bb).

In the article it said: "One day, back when was in my first year of music college, I was taking a piano lesson when my teacher and I came to a particular section of improvisation. I said, “This is in the A Dorian mode.” My teacher said, “Well, it’s really the same as playing in G major,” but I disagreed. I said that if I’m playing in A Dorian, I’ll emphasize the notes differently than if I were thinking G major."

I'm not sure if Satch or the teacher was right. If the chord progression was in G major, the teacher was right. But if the chord progression was something like Am-D or Am-Bm, Satch was right, it is not in G major. But Satch says he's thinking in A dorian... I don't know. It is true that playing in A dorian is different than playing in G major. But I don't know about the situation. Satch didn't say what chords he was playing over and he doesn't even talk about chords in the article which IMO is not a good thing. Because the chords you are playing over pretty much define the function of the notes you are playing.


I dunno. To a certain extent I agree with you. At the same time, you can certainly solo in a certain scale/mode with no backing at all, and it should be clear what scale/mode you're playing in. Assuming you always resolve to the root.
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Old 10-08-2013, 03:37 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave_Mc
I dunno. To a certain extent I agree with you. At the same time, you can certainly solo in a certain scale/mode with no backing at all, and it should be clear what scale/mode you're playing in. Assuming you always resolve to the root.

That's true. But most of the time you'll have a backing track. And I didn't say you couldn't tell if you are playing in C major or A minor if there's no backing track.
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Last edited by MaggaraMarine : 10-08-2013 at 03:39 PM.
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Old 10-08-2013, 04:27 PM   #11
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True.
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Old 10-08-2013, 05:25 PM   #12
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I was gonna try and explain, but then I read what Alan posted and gave up.
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