#1
Quick question, if I'm writing a piece where the intro is in E mixolydian (so containing an F sharp, C sharp and G sharp) do I put four sharps in the key signature to relate the mode to the key of E, or do I put 3 sharps in the key sig and make it look like its in A major (except for E being the apparent root note of the piece)

Thanks in advance
#2
3 Sharps, you make any D sharps in the song natural. The song *is* in E, not A.
#3
E Maj has 4 sharps, so...

If the piece is in they key of E, you would use the E Maj key signature (4 #s) and then flat the D (with a nat. accidental) in the line you are using E Mixo.
Last edited by stondagain at Jan 9, 2009,
#5
Quote by Myung-trucci
Quick question, if I'm writing a piece where the intro is in E mixolydian (so containing an F sharp, C sharp and G sharp) do I put four sharps in the key signature to relate the mode to the key of E, or do I put 3 sharps in the key sig and make it look like its in A major (except for E being the apparent root note of the piece)

Thanks in advance



Key signatures tell you what's consistently sharp or flat in a piece. In this case 3 sharps is appropriate. (not 4 as has been suggested).

"The purpose of the key signature is to minimize the number of accidentals required to notate the music"

- Wiki
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Last edited by GuitarMunky at Jan 9, 2009,
#8
:| im answering this based on what I've seen in music when I used to play classical piano, but if the song's in E, then you definitely use the key signature of E, which is and F# C# G# D#. If you choose to write lines in E mixolydian, you simply put a natural sign beside your D#s, not remove the D# from the key signature. The key signature also signifies what key the song is in, which, in this case, is E, not A major or F# minor. A mode is not a key, after all.
#9
It depends entirely on the context. Where does the song modulate after the introduction?
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#10
Key signatures are more orientated towards major/minor tonal music than modal music, or so I've been told. Basically every solution to the problem is pretty ugly

EDIT: Here's a discussion http://www.thesession.org/discussions/display/15435. Don't know if they are on the right track, but they have generally said you should keysig E Mixo as A major to minimise accidentals.
Last edited by Roast Beef at Jan 9, 2009,
#11
Quote by Roast Beef
Key signatures are more orientated towards major/minor tonal music than modal music, or so I've been told. Basically every solution to the problem is pretty ugly


Not really. The only real purpose of a key signature is to spare the composer having to notate a huge number of sharps and flats. You most certainly aren't restricted to key signatures denoting keys (plenty of composers have used non-standard key signatures).
Someones knowledge of guitar companies spelling determines what amps you can own. Really smart people can own things like Framus because they sound like they might be spelled with a "y" but they aren't.
#12
On the other hand if you're writing in say, E minor, seeing as it's the 6th mode, you wouldn't put the key signature of E major and then flat all the C#s, G#s, and D#s, so I guess it would make sense to just make the key signature whatever is most convenient.
#15
Quote by Roast Beef
^ But E minor isn't a mode


The term mode is frequently used to refer to major and minor as well as modal music. It can be slightly confusing unless you specify the sense in which you're using it.
Someones knowledge of guitar companies spelling determines what amps you can own. Really smart people can own things like Framus because they sound like they might be spelled with a "y" but they aren't.
#16
sorry, E Aeolian, from my understanding of modes I didn't think it really mattered.
#17
What I was getting at was that E minor isn't a modal keysig. When you see 1 sharp, it's E minor (or G major, and the difference should be obvious). It's a non-issue because natural minor keysigs are so common. E Phrygian, say, is the sort of problem OP was having, facing the alternatives of using an E minor key signature and using accidentals or using the C/Am key signature.
#18
When you see 1 sharp, it's E minor


I should point out that is more of a convention within most genres of music than an actual property of standard notation. It's entirely possible to notate a piece with a non-standard key signature that doesn't correspond to any diatonic scale. Still, this is rare enough that you don't really need to consider it when reading a key signature. If you're playing the kind of music that actually uses non-standard key signatures, you're probably well versed enough in the music to recognize them.
Someones knowledge of guitar companies spelling determines what amps you can own. Really smart people can own things like Framus because they sound like they might be spelled with a "y" but they aren't.