#1
I remember reading somewhere about quartal voicings (chords). I asked a while back but I can't find the thread and I don't exactly remember the theory behind it. Can someone refresh my memory?
#2
Mmm a chord completely made up of stacked fourths.

I remember galvanise talking about them. I can't remember a use for them. The whole completely stacked fourths thing sounds gross and unusable to me.
        ,
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#3
The jazz pianist Bill Evans used a lot of quartal voiced chords in his accompaniment. The most famous is probably in the track "So What" by Miles Davis, where the main riff is based on quartal harmony
#4
Quote by demonofthenight
The whole completely stacked fourths thing sounds gross and unusable to me.




They've been used lots of times and sound great.
shred is gaudy music
#6
Quote by GuitarMunky



They've been used lots of times and sound great.

You wanna elaborate?
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        |\
[U]        | |                     [/U]
[U]        |/     .-.              [/U]
[U]       /|_     `-’       |      [/U]
[U]      //| \      |       |      [/U]
[U]     | \|_ |     |     .-|      [/U]
      *-|-*    (_)     `-’
        |
        L.
#7
Hmmm I really thought that this was just a concept for piano...its quite difficult to do on guitar and make it sound good. I use this on piano sometimes...because you can get a nice spacing to the notes...but really the chords you produce can all normally be described using standard "3rd-based-chord" theory.

Its great how jazz always finds complicated ways to see mundane things
#9
Quote by demonofthenight
You wanna elaborate?


What else is there to say? You want an example of a chord built in 4ths that sounds "usable"?


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Quote by chainsawguitar
.but really the chords you produce can all normally be described using standard "3rd-based-chord" theory.



True ........ good point.
shred is gaudy music
Last edited by GuitarMunky at Jul 7, 2009,
#10
Everything is usable in one way or another, IMO.
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#11
Quartal voicings make most sense when used in modal music as they can establish a tonal center without a reference to function, also the 4ths are less harmonically dense than chords built on 3rds therefore allow more freedom. Miles Davis also created what would become to be known as the 'So What' voicing, the so what voicing is simply a series of stacked P4ths with a third on top.
#12
Quartal voicings are easier to play on guitar than piano because you can essentially just bar strings to get a quartal chord except for the B string. These chords are often notated as Cm7/F or Fm7/Bb.
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#14
Quote by guitarbite1985
Thanks for the inputs...so I'm guessing that most of quartal voicings are mainly used in jazz.


You can use them anywhere, but yeah, you'll hear them played in jazz.
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#15
Without a decent understanding of functional harmony (despite quartal harmony being largely non-functional), we can't really explain to you what they're good for. Both because it's a necessary prerequisite, and because it's not really as important or versatile as harmony based on thirds anyway.
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#16
Quote by GuitarMunky

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well, i dont know near as much theory as other people in this thread, i just got done learning diatonic triad progressions in major and minor keys and 7th chords , yes i am a noob.

but i know that i love that chord, its in the easy-listening part of Dream Theaters' "A Change of Seasons", along with 2 other chords that are the same shape and type, but with a different root.
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Quote by OMMad
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#17
Yeah, I talked about the a while back, and in jazz (and really any music) in my personal oppinion, its one of my favorite types of harmony.

As you've already heard they consist of stacked fourths (perfect, augmented, and in the case of some melodic minor quartal voicings, diminished fourths ) whatever is descripted by the scale your working from.

Quartal Harmony is ambiguous a Quartal voicing consisting of C F and Bb can have multiple applications

Gm11, Gbmaj7#11, Dbmaj13, Dmin7b13, C7sus4 ect

This is because the voices have a less direct relationship to the root of the chord.

You can also take any given quartal voicing, and put under it a different bass note

One of my personal favorites for an ending I chord is:

G E A D G

-3-
-3-
-2-
-2-
--
-3-


Sounds really damn pretty

The biggest thing about quartal voicings is simple that they can move freely within a mode, and function appropriatley for single chords within that mode/scale

Any quartal voicing from D Dorian, can function as a ii chord, (this idea is especially great in modal tunes, So What)


They can also move outside of tonality, and function as parralell structures to harmonise a give melody, for instance you can harmonize a melody is non-diatonic perfect 4th stacks (Jim Hall does this on When Joanna Loved Me ) with paul desmond.

Try harmonizing any given scale or mode in strictly perfect 4ths (this implies ponytonality)

And check out So What for a nice Quartal Voicing

x55565

This is just basics, get Mel Bays Quartal Harmony and Voicings for Guitar and you'll be well on your way
#18
I'm making some cool progressions at the moment with chords like this:

--10--
--10--
--9--
----
----
--7--


Sounds really nice. Does it have to be all strictly 4ths to be quartal harmony? Like the "So What chord" contains a third, or is it considered a diminished fourth in this case? Until I read the post above I thought it had to be all perfect 4ths.
#19
Quote by Galvanise69
Quartal Harmony is ambiguous a Quartal voicing consisting of C F and Bb can have multiple applications

Gm11, Gbmaj7#11, Dbmaj13, Dmin7b13, C7sus4 ect



That's quite a rediculous statement. If only C F and Bb are present, it will always be either C7sus4, Bbsus2, or Fsus4, depending on the bass note. It seems very silly to start assuming it implies Gm11, when G and D aren't present, etc... That's like saying the notes C E G can be Am7, Abmaj7+, Fmaj9, Dm11, G13.
#20
Quote by isaac_bandits
That's quite a rediculous statement. If only C F and Bb are present, it will always be either C7sus4, Bbsus2, or Fsus4, depending on the bass note. It seems very silly to start assuming it implies Gm11, when G and D aren't present, etc... That's like saying the notes C E G can be Am7, Abmaj7+, Fmaj9, Dm11, G13.



It is not very ridiculous at all.

It is one of the main concepts to realize if one wants to theoretically analyze fourth voicings in a diatonic situation. Often at least two incomplete fourth voicings are needed in order to unambigiously establish the harmonic function of a single chord.
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#21
I've had this video in my favs for awhile...check it out.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bqW6w3G5ceo
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