#1
I am writing my own stuff, got a good set of chords, just wondering the relationship between the chords and solos, I've studied Sweet Child O' Mine and noticed that only the key and forms are similar, is that it?
#2
scales and chords are exaclty the same thing, just arranged differently - ultimately it all boils down to notes and intervals...sounds and the spaces between them.

Notes in a certain pattern form scales, chords are derived from scales etc etc
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#3
A solo is usually in the same key eith the chords.

For example if you are in G major:
Your notes are:

G A B C D E F#

The chords that fit together in Gmajor contain these notes, there are of cours exceptions but that goes a little deeper into the theory.

So you can build chords from the notes above such as:

Gmajor contains G B D
Aminor contains A C E
and so on.

So if oyu want to write a solo first find out in which key you are.

Example: Your chords are Cmajor Fmajor and Gmajor -->
your notes: C E G F A C G H D --> C D E F G A H C <-- this is a Cmajor scale.
To solo you can use all the notes above without worrying to much about anything else. It always sounds good if you rest on a note that is in the chord you are actually playing to. When the rhythm guitar plays Gmajor you can f.e. rest on the third (B), depending on which color you want to give your solo, you can try to rest f.e. on the ninth (A)

Hope this helps
#4
when soloing, do you always need to start on the tonic note (as in the key of the piece of music)?
#6
Watch all these....

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PnbOWi6f_IM

...now the second episode is Harmony and that directly addresses your question, but i'd definitely recommend watching through Melody first.
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#7
Quote by steven seagull
Watch all these....

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PnbOWi6f_IM

...now the second episode is Harmony and that directly addresses your question, but i'd definitely recommend watching through Melody first.


Just watched Melody Part 1, waaaay to basic, I've read a bit about music theory, I understand what they are trying to say, harmony fills the melody up. I am watching harmony now.

Also, is it the first chord that defys what key a song is in? Or can a song start anywhere?
#8
Quote by Nitro89
Also, is it the first chord that defys what key a song is in? Or can a song start anywhere?
No, yes.
Only play what you hear. If you don’t hear anything, don’t play anything.
-Chick Corea
#9
so to identify what key a song is in then, you have to do it by finding the key signatures? If not, how do you know what key a song is in (I play everything by ear)?

Wouldn't the I chord be the key of the song because its a tonic?
#10
Quote by Nitro89
so to identify what key a song is in then, you have to do it by finding the key signatures? If not, how do you know what key a song is in (I play everything by ear)?


The key comes from the notes used in the song. If you find out the notes to be CDEFGAB then it's in the key of C because that's the notes the C major scale comes from.

Quote by Nitro89
Wouldn't the I chord be the key of the song because its a tonic?


Yeah
Last edited by d1sturbed4eva at Nov 28, 2009,
#11
Quote by d1sturbed4eva
The key comes from the notes used in the song. If you find out the notes to be CDEFGAB then it's in the key of C because that's the notes the C major scale comes from.
You are right, but there's another step to it. Now you have the key signature, but you don't have the tonic. So you have seven possible tonics. The most common in that key signature would be C (major) and A (minor), but you have all of the rest of the modes in that key signature.

I'll give you an example, to see if you can hear how this riff resolves:
E C A D B G C A F B G E
Only play what you hear. If you don’t hear anything, don’t play anything.
-Chick Corea
#12
Quote by food1010
You are right, but there's another step to it. Now you have the key signature, but you don't have the tonic. So you have seven possible tonics. The most common in that key signature would be C (major) and A (minor), but you have all of the rest of the modes in that key signature.

I'll give you an example, to see if you can hear how this riff resolves:
E C A D B G C A F B G E


By looking at this, because the tonic and last notes of this sequence are E, I would've thought that the Key was in E, however, because there are no sharps of flats, this piece is either written in C MAJOR or A minor.

I am probably playing it wrong but if feels slightly unresolved.

Also, when identifying what key something is in, can you ever really identify what exact scale pattern the player is using?
#13
Quote by Nitro89
By looking at this, because the tonic and last notes of this sequence are E, I would've thought that the Key was in E, however, because there are no sharps of flats, this piece is either written in C MAJOR or A minor.

I am probably playing it wrong but if feels slightly unresolved.

Also, when identifying what key something is in, can you ever really identify what exact scale pattern the player is using?


Yes it has no sharps and flats so you could say it is in C major but there are other modes other then major and minor. Different modes of C major could be D dorian, E phrygian, F lydian, G mixolydian, A minor, and B locrian. They all consist of the same notes but they just start different ones. And since the tonic note is E you can say it resolves to E phrygian.

You're probably are better of having someone else explain this to you because they are waaayy more knowledgable on this then I am. So if someone notices that I'm wron please correct me.
#14
Quote by d1sturbed4eva
Yes it has no sharps and flats so you could say it is in C major but there are other modes other then major and minor. Different modes of C major could be D dorian, E phrygian, F lydian, G mixolydian, A minor, and B locrian. They all consist of the same notes but they just start different ones. And since the tonic note is E you can say it resolves to E phrygian.
I think there was a misunderstanding. I meant for you to play the chord progression and add a note to the end that resolved it. I wasn't meaning to say that it was resolved (so, it's not in E phrygian).

Quote by Nitro89
By looking at this, because the tonic and last notes of this sequence are E, I would've thought that the Key was in E, however, because there are no sharps of flats, this piece is either written in C MAJOR or A minor.
Again, we aren't on the same page here, and I apologize. It neither starts nor ends on the tonic (it's not E). I did this on purpose so you would look away from the first and last notes and rather look at the key signature and "resolve" it, or so to speak by adding a note at the end and then determining based on that tonic that you discovered to determine which of these modes/keys it was in: C major, D dorian, E phrygian, F lydian, G mixolydian, A minor, and B locrian.
Only play what you hear. If you don’t hear anything, don’t play anything.
-Chick Corea
Last edited by food1010 at Nov 29, 2009,
#15
I was plucking the notes lol.

I believe the riff resolves in a D major chord?

In a way, doesn't this "riff" belong to all these scales:
C major
D dorian (the riff belongs to this one)
E phrygian
F lydian
G mixolydian
A minor
B locrian

How would I know what exact scale a song belongs in?

Furthermore, I am using a few backing tracks at the moment, taking out the chords and discovering their key signature, however, while improvising, I know what notes to use, but do I need to know what scale to use?
#16
Quote by Nitro89
I was plucking the notes lol.

I believe the riff resolves in a D major chord?

In a way, doesn't this "riff" belong to all these scales:
C major
D dorian (the riff belongs to this one)
E phrygian
F lydian
G mixolydian
A minor
B locrian

How would I know what exact scale a song belongs in?

Furthermore, I am using a few backing tracks at the moment, taking out the chords and discovering their key signature, however, while improvising, I know what notes to use, but do I need to know what scale to use?
Eh, I was thinking A (minor), but that example was misleading as well. I was hoping for a single note, not a chord. Sorry about that.

You don't really need to know what scale you're using, but you are going to want to emphasize the chord tones of the chord you are playing over. For example, in C G Am F, over the C, you're going to emphasize C E and G, over the G - G B D, over the Am - A C E, and over the F - F A and C.
Only play what you hear. If you don’t hear anything, don’t play anything.
-Chick Corea
#17
Quote by food1010
Eh, I was thinking A (minor), but that example was misleading as well. I was hoping for a single note, not a chord. Sorry about that.

You don't really need to know what scale you're using, but you are going to want to emphasize the chord tones of the chord you are playing over. For example, in C G Am F, over the C, you're going to emphasize C E and G, over the G - G B D, over the Am - A C E, and over the F - F A and C.


So If I was improvising (soloing), and a C major chord appeared, I'd play a succession of notes but highlighting C E and G (which are all part of the C triad)?
#18
No, you'd play whatever you want, you're thinking about this way too much.

You just choose what to play based on what it sounds like, chord tones are going to sound more consonant and will help hold everything together so you need to know what they are and where they are. You just need to listen to what you're playing and hear the tension and resolution for yourself. If you want things to become a little unstable or dissonant then go for it, but as soon as you feel it's time to bring everything home that's when you'll head back to your chord tones.
Actually called Mark!

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#19
So you're saying I can choose to play the notes I want, the chord tones help structure the solo but its also good to break away from that to create tension.
#20
Quote by Nitro89
So you're saying I can choose to play the notes I want, the chord tones help structure the solo but its also good to break away from that to create tension.


Exactly. Use non-chord tones for more dissonance, but don't use so many that you lose the sense of tonality. Ultimate goal is it sounding good. Remember there is nothing you can play that is wrong according to theory. Theory just names what you do, and it can name any notes over any chord.
#21
Quote by Nitro89
Just watched Melody Part 1, waaaay to basic, I've read a bit about music theory, I understand what they are trying to say, harmony fills the melody up. I am watching harmony now.

Also, is it the first chord that defys what key a song is in? Or can a song start anywhere?


It couldn't be too basic if you couldn't determine the key of a song.
And no, Guitar Hero will not help. Even on expert. Really.
Soundcloud
#22
can anyone give me more information on chord tones please? I've made a few small chord tone melodies, they just need to be filled in by extra notes, is there a special way of doing this?

Also, whats their relationship to scales?
#23

have even looked at any of the things you've been told to look at?

I'm out, short of learning the bloody stuff for you there's nothing more I can do.
Actually called Mark!

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Last edited by steven seagull at Dec 21, 2009,
#24
Quote by Nitro89
I am writing my own stuff, got a good set of chords, just wondering the relationship between the chords and solos, I've studied Sweet Child O' Mine and noticed that only the key and forms are similar, is that it?


I'm not sure what you mean by that question. But for a solo to sound most "in key", the scales are going to be built from the same notes that make up the chords. Lots of chords happen to share the same notes as found in the key.

For example the notes which make up the chords: C Am F and G7

They all have notes in common with C D E F G A B - The C major scale, so they sound great together when playing leads.

There is a definite connection between chords and scales.

Quote by Nitro89
can anyone give me more information on chord tones please? I've made a few small chord tone melodies, they just need to be filled in by extra notes, is there a special way of doing this?

Also, whats their relationship to scales?


I'm going to suggest that you not worry about "outside" notes. Once you learn how to play diatonic (scales with chords in a Key) then you can learn how to go outside. Right now learn to walk before you try and run.

Chord tones, to be simple are the 1 3 and 5 of whatever chord is suggested over the key. A "special way of doing it" is stack thirds. How do you know if they are major 3rds or minor thirds? Well it helps to know the chords in any key right, so if the iii in a key is minor and you have a D then you'd harmonize (fill) it in with an F (minor 3rd)

Their relationship to scales are, they come from the scale.
Last edited by Sean0913 at Dec 21, 2009,
#25
Quote by Nitro89
can anyone give me more information on chord tones please? I've made a few small chord tone melodies, they just need to be filled in by extra notes, is there a special way of doing this?

Also, whats their relationship to scales?


There is no magic formula. Other scale tones will probably sound best, and you can put whatever in that you like. Whatever you like the sound of. You probably don't want to just make it sound like a scale, but you probably do want to have those non-chord tones for dissonance, and interest.
#26
Quote by Sean0913

Chord tones, to be simple are the 1 3 and 5 of whatever chord is suggested over the key. A "special way of doing it" is stack thirds. How do you know if they are major 3rds or minor thirds? Well it helps to know the chords in any key right, so if the iii in a key is minor and you have a D then you'd harmonize (fill) it in with an F (minor 3rd)

Their relationship to scales are, they come from the scale.

It's not a "special way of doing it", it's "the way to do it"...it's "how it was done when they invented bloody chord progressions". You don't need to know the chords in the key at all, you just need the scale - harmonising the scale gives you the chords.
Actually called Mark!

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Last edited by steven seagull at Dec 22, 2009,
#27
Quote by steven seagull
It's not a "special way of doing it", it's "the way to do it"...it's "how it was done when they invented bloody chord progressions". You don't need to know the chords in the key at all, you just need the scale - harmonising the scale gives you the chords.


I'm not gonna waste time splitting yet another irrelevant hair with you.

His words were "special way" so I used his own vocabulary to answer his question.

I've never ran across so many nitpickers in a community where all they want to do is argue and proofread and parse words for the sole purpose of showing how much they know and others don't.

There's 2 part and three part harmony. Chords are triads and above, or have I conducted a fatal error? Two notes don't make up a chord, however they can suggest a chord type, if they involve the third. Still this guy doesn't appear to know that and can make absolutely no use of that information (harmonizing scales) given where his knowledge appears to be RIGHT NOW.

Do you guys even take into account the relevant background knowledge some of these questions have, or is your answer to thump them with a theory book, and pull out the red pen and mark up everyone's paper that doesn't agree with your approach to something?

Last edited by Sean0913 at Dec 22, 2009,
#28
Quote by Sean0913
I'm going to suggest that you not worry about "outside" notes. Once you learn how to play diatonic (scales with chords in a Key) then you can learn how to go outside. Right now learn to walk before you try and run.

Chord tones, to be simple are the 1 3 and 5 of whatever chord is suggested over the key. A "special way of doing it" is stack thirds. How do you know if they are major 3rds or minor thirds? Well it helps to know the chords in any key right, so if the iii in a key is minor and you have a D then you'd harmonize (fill) it in with an F (minor 3rd)

Their relationship to scales are, they come from the scale.
ok a lot of conversations are starting to make sense now lol

Stacking 3rds doesn't mean you've got a couple of thirds on top of each other and you don't know what they are without working it out some other way - to stack 3rds you start with the scale, and stack 3rds from that scale - so if you're in C Maj forming a chord from the root you've got C, and you know a 3rd above that is E, which is a major 3rd, and G is a minor 3rd above E - so you got a Major chord. So you know whether the 3rds are major or minor as you stack them - you don't need to work it out after. The formula for chord scales comes from stacking 3rds, not the other way around.

@TS - learn the Major scale so you understand it - and I mean how its constructed in terms of steps and intervals and notes, not just how to play it. Then learn to harmonise the scale - that will teach you chord construction and how chords fit with scales, as well as giving you enough understanding of the major scale to make all your other scales a darn sight easier to learn
Last edited by zhilla at Dec 22, 2009,
#29
Quote by Sean0913
I'm not gonna waste time splitting yet another irrelevant hair with you.

His words were "special way" so I used his own vocabulary to answer his question.

I've never ran across so many nitpickers in a community where all they want to do is argue and proofread and parse words for the sole purpose of showing how much they know and others don't.

There's 2 part and three part harmony. Chords are triads and above, or have I conducted a fatal error? Two notes don't make up a chord, however they can suggest a chord type, if they involve the third. Still this guy doesn't appear to know that and can make absolutely no use of that information (harmonizing scales) given where his knowledge appears to be RIGHT NOW.

Do you guys even take into account the relevant background knowledge some of these questions have, or is your answer to thump them with a theory book, and pull out the red pen and mark up everyone's paper that doesn't agree with your approach to something?


No, I only do that to you
Actually called Mark!

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#31
Quote by zhilla
ok a lot of conversations are starting to make sense now lol

Stacking 3rds doesn't mean you've got a couple of thirds on top of each other and you don't know what they are without working it out some other way - to stack 3rds you start with the scale, and stack 3rds from that scale - so if you're in C Maj forming a chord from the root you've got C, and you know a 3rd above that is E, which is a major 3rd, and G is a minor 3rd above E - so you got a Major chord. So you know whether the 3rds are major or minor as you stack them - you don't need to work it out after. The formula for chord scales comes from stacking 3rds, not the other way around.

@TS - learn the Major scale so you understand it - and I mean how its constructed in terms of steps and intervals and notes, not just how to play it. Then learn to harmonise the scale - that will teach you chord construction and how chords fit with scales, as well as giving you enough understanding of the major scale to make all your other scales a darn sight easier to learn


I understand everything about scales and chord tones etc It's just using them to make melodic blues music, I can get a good sound here and there but wondering if I missed anything out. What is meant by harmonizing the scale? That maybe what I need help with?
#32
"Scales and chords are exactly the same thing" ?

But what about Medieval and Renaissance music? I don't think one could see it adequately from such a point of view.
#33
Quote by Nitro89
I understand everything about scales and chord tones etc It's just using them to make melodic blues music, I can get a good sound here and there but wondering if I missed anything out. What is meant by harmonizing the scale? That maybe what I need help with?


If you understand "everything" about chords and scales and such, do you mean you understand it "up here" in the head, or do you have the ability to use what you know already and apply it to the guitar? Your question makes it sound as if you DONT understand everything.

Harmonizing the scale, has to do with taking the notes in a key and adding notes to them which also sound good, played at the same time. For example, in the key of C, E sounds good with it. We are adding another note, in effect, "harmonizing" the C note.

So harmonizing a scale, involves taking each note of that scale, and adding a note to it that sounds good with it.

Forgive my bluntness, but if you don't understand this, then you don't "know everything" as you put it. This is a good checklist, and by this I mean, not only "know" but "know and be able to play"

Musical Alphabet
Notes on the Neck
Intervals
Major Scales
Major Keys
Triads - be able to call them out or say the letters in them, and find them on the guitar (become your own walking Chord Book)

Hope this gets you started.
#34
Quote by Sean0913
If you understand "everything" about chords and scales and such, do you mean you understand it "up here" in the head, or do you have the ability to use what you know already and apply it to the guitar? Your question makes it sound as if you DONT understand everything.

Harmonizing the scale, has to do with taking the notes in a key and adding notes to them which also sound good, played at the same time. For example, in the key of C, E sounds good with it. We are adding another note, in effect, "harmonizing" the C note.

So harmonizing a scale, involves taking each note of that scale, and adding a note to it that sounds good with it.

Forgive my bluntness, but if you don't understand this, then you don't "know everything" as you put it. This is a good checklist, and by this I mean, not only "know" but "know and be able to play"

Musical Alphabet
Notes on the Neck
Intervals
Major Scales
Major Keys
Triads - be able to call them out or say the letters in them, and find them on the guitar (become your own walking Chord Book)

Hope this gets you started.


I actually just realized the stupidity of my question, I know what I need to do, just didn't realize it earlier.
#35
Quote by Nitro89
I understand everything about scales and chord tones etc It's just using them to make melodic blues music, I can get a good sound here and there but wondering if I missed anything out. What is meant by harmonizing the scale? That maybe what I need help with?
By learning to harmonize the scale I basically mean learn to form chords from the scale by stacking 3rds. Take a note from the scale, add a 3rd above it (which will be 2 notes along in the scale), then add another 3rd above that and you have a triad. Add another 3rd on top and you have a 7th chord. What type of chord it is will be determined by what type of 3rds you get - for example

Take C Major

C D E F G A B

Starting from the root you get C, a Major 3rd above C is E, and G is a minor 3rd above E - so C E G is a Maj 3rd plus a min 3rd, which gives you a major chord

From the 2nd degree of the scale - D - a minor 3rd above D is F, and a Major 3rd above F is A - so D F A is a min 3rd plus a Maj 3rd, which gives you a minor chord

Maj 3rd + min 3rd = Major chord
min 3rd + Maj 3rd = minor chord
min 3rd + min 3rd = diminished chord
Maj 3rd + Maj 3rd = augmented chord

That way you know what chords will go with a scale so you can experiment with your own chord progs and the full scale or the pentatonic scale over it and see what you like
#36
TS, all your questions are being answered very well, so I'm not going to chip in. You did say you were interested in blues, so if you start a thread about blues harmony I'm sure myself and others will gladly jump in and help you out.
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