(Title) Any lick, riff or whatever.
I know the notes around the neck, but people always make me look like an idiot (Music Theory wise) any advise would be great.

sorry if I'm doing something wrong, i just joined :P
play a note and if it rings out nicely then you got your key
R.I.P Jon Lord, Rory Gallagher and Jimi!
Quote by stef123
play a note and if it rings out nicely then you got your key

Tell me thats a joke?
This may help you TS.
Originally Posted by Chromeproguitar
they make horrible noises in the middle of the night (is it sex?)

Quote by CliffIsAngry
I guess she's pretty hot if you're into that "having a good music video, but not better than Beyonce's" kind of thing...
Alot of the time the key can be the first/last note/chord in a progression. If you know the notes used you can narrow it down to a number of keys, you then need to learn how to feel what the tonic is i.e feel which note/chord the music pulls towards. Then there are going to be songs that break the rules (blues is a good example) so you need to learn how/why the rules can be broken.

This all easier said than done. You'll get better as you practise and improve your theory. I am terrible at this, but I'm sure I'll get there.
Quote by Jonjy2
Keys are made up of (usually seven) different notes. These notes will sound familiar if played over the song. They may not sound perfect but they won't sound like someone dropped a mirror.

I'm sure there are multiple lessons around UG for this, look around. Good luck.

That's a scale, not a key. I think...
I usually just play over a song up the neck, improvise it I mean, and I'll end up finding key(s) that really mesh with it.

But yeah, research root notes.
well, an easy way that normally works is to find out which scales the notes fit into if you actually have all seven notes, then it's easy, you just have to figure out if it's the major, or the relative minor.

mostly, it's just figuring out which note everythin resolves to.
1. Find where the riff/lick resolves (where it feels like it ends).
2. Write down notes in riff.
3. See if the notes fit best in the major or minor scale of the note it resolves to (the root).
4. Usually, this will give you the key.
5. Use the searchbar.
6. Read the sticky.
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I always thought that it was the first chord under whatever progression the singer sings on.

Often, the "root" chord is either the first or last chord in a chord progression. For example, in the 12-bar I-IV-V progression (see Chapter I-3) I made for you, the first chord (A Major) is the root... In other progressions, the last chord in the progression is the root. A better general rule is: the chord that "resolves" the progression best is the root chord. For example, in the "Knocking on Heaven's Door" video, the last chord played is F# Major, and this chord "resolves" the progression...

A better way to determine the key of a song, however, is to look at ALL the chords in the progression, and trying to fit them in a certain harmonized scale. For example, "Knocking on Heaven's Door" has a B Major and a C# Major in it. These are 2 Major chords that are 2 semitones apart... That means, they HAVE to be chords IV and V of the harmonized scale, because that's the only place in the scale where 2 Major chords are adjacent! So, if B Major is IV, just count backwards (5 semitones) and you'll find that F# Major is the root note... You can use "orientation points" like this in other progressions as well to determine the key, it just takes a little puzzling!

This is a better way of determining the key of a song, because it takes less "guesswork". However, it's not always possible to determine the key of a song with a 100% certainty using this method... For example, some songs use chord progressions with only 2 chords, without even using the root chord. This makes determining the key even harder!

Like I said, determining the key of a song takes some getting used to. In many cases, you're not able to say right away what key a song is in. This is made even more difficult by the fact that Major scales have their relative Minors! For example, Eric Clapton's "Layla" (unplugged version) uses a Dm-Bb-C progression in the chorus. Bb and C are, again, adjacent Major chords, which would lead you to the conclusion that the song is in F Major (Bb and C being chords IV and V in F Major harmonized!). However, in this case it's more logical that the key is D Minor, the relative Minor scale of F Major, simply because there's no F chord in the progression, but there is a Dm chord.


That helped me a bit.
Use your ear.

Whatever note or tonic the song, lick or progressions sounds finished on will be the key.
[U]        | |                     [/U]
[U]        |/     .-.              [/U]
[U]       /|_     `-’       |      [/U]
[U]      //| \      |       |      [/U]
[U]     | \|_ |     |     .-|      [/U]
      *-|-*    (_)     `-’
I usually just break out Virtual MIDI Keyboard and play notes until they match up. Pretty easy way to learn.
Quote by alkalineweeman
Tell me thats a joke?
This may help you TS.

Thought I wouldn't follow their advice of "giving" up if you have bad pitch recognition.
I couldn't even sing a single note in tune when I picked up the guitar. But I trained, and now, even I am nowhere near where I want to be, I'm atleast good enough to beat 90% of all the other noob guitarists I socialize with

Oh, and http://www.musictheory.net/trainers/html/id90_en.html is nice, if you want to better your aural skills.