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Old 01-15-2013, 07:51 PM   #1
白い雲
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Strange chord progression

D/F# - G - Bm - E - G - D/F# - Bm - Bm

Analyzed as being in B minor:

III (1st inversion) - VI - i - IV - VI - III (1st inversion) - i - i

The main problem is that pesky IV chord. In natural minor, it would be iv. If the passage was B dorian, the VI chords would be vi diminished chords. No matter how you cut it, the passage contains mostly G naturals, and one G#. If you play this on your guitar, that G# really gives the passage power. So, what's the deal? The melodic minor ascending explanation doesn't work either, because there isn't an A# for the G# to go to in the next chord.

This is the first (and last) 8 bars of a piece called Yokan from the Evangelion (anime) soundtrack. The song's on youtube, and you can also find the sheet music with a google search, but I can't post them here. I think that E major chord sounds great, but I don't understand why. Maybe someone knowledgeable in jazz theory would know? Thanks!

Last edited by 白い雲 : 01-15-2013 at 07:53 PM.
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Old 01-15-2013, 07:54 PM   #2
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E is a borrowed chord from B major
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Old 01-15-2013, 07:56 PM   #3
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So, just a very brief mode mixture? I think my theory book (Tonal Harmony, Kostka and Payne) confused me on this by saying that the only note that minor can borrow from major is the major 3rd scale degree. (Because the raised 6 and 7 are part of harmonic and melodic minor). EXCEPT WHEN THEY"RE NOT. haha
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Old 01-15-2013, 08:01 PM   #4
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It has nothing to do with modes. I suggest you go back and learn your harmony. While I haven't heard the song I'd wager that the g# in the e major chord is a necessity for supporting the melody.

edit : just listened, it's supporting the melody like I thought.
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Old 01-15-2013, 08:03 PM   #5
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"Mode mixture" is an unfortunate name that some theory people use to describe a minor chord progression borrowing a chord from the parallel major, or vice versa. It's really got nothing to do with modes per se, I agree. It's just a specific type of borrowed chords.
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Old 01-15-2013, 08:07 PM   #6
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Supporting the melody is also ruled out, unfortunately. The only melody to speak of at this point in the song is a series of arpeggios that end on half notes, and the G# isn't in these arpeggios at all, just the chords behind them (and the following arpeggio doesn't have an A or A#).
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Old 01-15-2013, 08:07 PM   #7
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^ I don't know who those "some people" are but they're wrong lol, its called borrowing a chord and has nothing at all to do with modes. Just like any other chord its placed where it to provide harmony to the melody.

And its obviously there to support the melody, the melody doesn't have to have a g# in it . Go back to and start over with music theory man, you missed some important stuff it sounds like.
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Old 01-15-2013, 08:10 PM   #8
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Those some people are Kostka and Payne, who wrote my (fairly well respected) theory textbook. I'm not trying to show you up; I think it's dumb too, but it's out there..

Telling me to go back to the beginning doesn't help anything. I'm the most proficient person I know in theory other thank my teachers, and I teach it too. I think you're underestimating my ability. If you can give me a specific pointer, ok. Maybe I missed something?

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Old 01-15-2013, 08:19 PM   #9
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They can be well respected and use inaccurate terminology to describe what's going on musically. I still suggest you go back to basics. No condescension inferred but try music theory for dummies (or maybe its the complete idiots guide to music theory) I keep a copy of it around and its a pretty easy read and really a good start if you do the exercises. If anything ever led you to think music theory is made up of rules then you're already in the wrong mindset. Theory simply describes why music sounds the way it does.
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Old 01-15-2013, 08:24 PM   #10
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Great. I'll keep that in mind.

Anyone else?
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Old 01-15-2013, 08:28 PM   #11
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Anyone else?

I agree with this:
Quote:
Originally Posted by z4twenny
E is a borrowed chord from B major
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Old 01-15-2013, 08:44 PM   #12
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Mode mixture is (one of) the proper term(s) and tons of theorists use it. In textbook classical harmony you'll hear mode mixture more often than you'll hear borrowed chord. They're referring to mixing the major and minor modes (major and minor keys, basically).

The E major (or any major IV in minor) is modal mixture/primary mixture/mixture/a borrowed chord.
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Old 01-15-2013, 09:25 PM   #13
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^ I've read a couple books and have never run across that term, any suggestions on some sources that might have it? I'm all for a different objective perspective if there's one to be had.
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Old 01-15-2013, 09:36 PM   #14
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The aforementioned Kostka, I'm almost positive Piston uses it, the for-some-reason-published-textbook-that-only-my-university-out-of-every-university-in-the-world-uses Harmony through Melody uses it, and I had another one in mind, but I've forgotten what it's called.

In any case, it's not really a big deal. It's just another term for borrowed chords that some theorists use. The important thing is that they're primarily using modes in the sense of major/minor modes, not in the sense of "i lyk phrygian b9 dominant B7 69 lel."
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Old 01-15-2013, 09:54 PM   #15
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^ yeah I get that, I'll check out that kostka and Ive flipped through parts of pistons harmony years ago but don't recall seeing it. The reason I've got an issue with the naming convention is its not REALLY modal in the general sense. I'm curious what their explanation for the naming would be.
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Old 01-15-2013, 11:33 PM   #16
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Their reason for naming it that way is because they define modes as a collection of notes arranged in a scale form that form the basic tonal substance of a piece of music. Thus the key of C major defines the key centre as C and the "mode" as major.

While the term "modes" can also be used to describe the church modes specifically, it is commonly accepted that the only two modes used in Western Music over the last 200+ years are the major and minor modes, with the odd rare exception.

Hence when your key centre is C but you are mixing major and minor they call it "mode mixture". Nothing to do with the church modes though and because the church modes are relatively rare they are not often discussed or enter the thought process. That said they are also not frowned upon or despised or avoided but used in the appropriate setting.

In the context of MT however, and with guitar players in general, the term mode usually refers specifically to the church modes. In doing so it is so widely abused and misused that it results in some understandably ill feelings toward any reference to, or use of the word "mode".

At least that's how I understand the state of the situation.
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Old 01-16-2013, 01:29 AM   #17
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Yeah my understanding of it is that "mode" in this case simply refers to major key vs. minor key. It has nothing to do with modal music.
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Old 01-16-2013, 02:33 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by 20Tigers
Their reason for naming it that way is because they define modes as a collection of notes arranged in a scale form that form the basic tonal substance of a piece of music. Thus the key of C major defines the key centre as C and the "mode" as major.


+1.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 20Tigers
While the term "modes" can also be used to describe the church modes specifically, it is commonly accepted that the only two modes used in Western Music over the last 200+ years are the major and minor modes, with the odd rare exception.


and it's an extremely valid (and possibly superior) argument that they aren't even being used as modes at all.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 20Tigers
Hence when your key centre is C but you are mixing major and minor they call it "mode mixture". Nothing to do with the church modes though and because the church modes are relatively rare they are not often discussed or enter the thought process. That said they are also not frowned upon or despised or avoided but used in the appropriate setting.


+1.
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Old 01-16-2013, 02:58 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by z4twenny
^ yeah I get that, I'll check out that kostka and Ive flipped through parts of pistons harmony years ago but don't recall seeing it. The reason I've got an issue with the naming convention is its not REALLY modal in the general sense. I'm curious what their explanation for the naming would be.

You should really think harder before being a giant dick to a dude that's...using the correct terminology.
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Old 01-16-2013, 04:54 PM   #20
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