#1
Alright so I have been noticing lots of music lately that doesn't seem to be in any key... So I was wondering, do artists use scales as more of a guideline than a definite thing you must stick to?
#2
that's what scales are.... a guideline, nothing more.
music has no rules. as long as it's sounds cool, everythings possible.
#3
Quote by spacewasp
music that doesn't seem to be in any key
Most music is in a single defined key, whether or not it stays within the scale.

That said, key changes are pretty common in a lot of music.

Quote by jesus3000
that's what scales are.... a guideline, nothing more.
music has no rules. as long as it's sounds cool, everythings possible.
Truth right there.
Only play what you hear. If you don’t hear anything, don’t play anything.
-Chick Corea
Last edited by food1010 at Jan 1, 2010,
#4
Quote by spacewasp
Alright so I have been noticing lots of music lately that doesn't seem to be in any key... So I was wondering, do artists use scales as more of a guideline than a definite thing you must stick to?


Most music is in key, just because you use accidentals doesn't mean the tonal centre is lost.

Scales are just a guideline.
#5
Most rock type writing hardly ever stays in what we think as the "Key" based in a straight Diatonic Theory...except from the aspect of a Tonal Center. A Tonal Center can change harmonic aspects and still be considered a Tonal Center, or even a Tonic.

IOW, many songs are written with the Major Diatonic and the Minor Diatonic chords, together.

Major Diatonic Chords in G Major: G Am Bm C D Em F#mb5

Minor Diatonic Chords in Gm: Gm Amb5 Bb Cm Dm Eb F

These chords are, or this concept is, called "Borrowed chords" since the song might 'borrow' from both the Major and Minor Keys.

So, in the Key of Key G you could find

G Gm Am Am5b Bb Bm C Cm D Dm Eb Em F F#mb5

This straight line of chords are also called "Neighbor" chords, or even "Modal" chords.

But you see plenty of songs in G Major that use G Bb F and C. You can also find these chords in C Major and C Minor borrowed chords for the songs that contain these chords but are relative to C Major.

Now go back and examine some songs you find that don't stay on Key. This concept explains a lot.
#6
Quote by spacewasp
Alright so I have been noticing lots of music lately that doesn't seem to be in any key... So I was wondering, do artists use scales as more of a guideline than a definite thing you must stick to?


I get what you mean, sometimes I just come up with something that sounds nice while I'm prattling on with my guitar, then I think 'what the HELL key is that in?!'. But hey, atonal music does exist! XD

Funnily enough I played a chord shape wrong by accident once, but it sounded lovely so i kept it in the piece i was writing, and I always wondered what shape I'd actually played. Turns out it was a Sus4 :P

Xxx
I would rather be flawed and wise, than perfect and blind.
Last edited by Ravenix at Jan 1, 2010,
#7
Quote by spacewasp
Alright so I have been noticing lots of music lately that doesn't seem to be in any key... So I was wondering, do artists use scales as more of a guideline than a definite thing you must stick to?


Music Theory helps you understand, but it shouldn't always dictate what you do.

It just means you aren't flying blind. At the end, your own ears re what helps determine if something works or not. You can then use theory to identify what's going on and why it may work. It's simply playing with intelligence.
#8
Quote by MikeDodge
Most rock type writing hardly ever stays in what we think as the "Key" based in a straight Diatonic Theory...except from the aspect of a Tonal Center. A Tonal Center can change harmonic aspects and still be considered a Tonal Center, or even a Tonic.

IOW, many songs are written with the Major Diatonic and the Minor Diatonic chords, together.

Major Diatonic Chords in G Major: G Am Bm C D Em F#mb5

Minor Diatonic Chords in Gm: Gm Amb5 Bb Cm Dm Eb F

These chords are, or this concept is, called "Borrowed chords" since the song might 'borrow' from both the Major and Minor Keys.

So, in the Key of Key G you could find

G Gm Am Am5b Bb Bm C Cm D Dm Eb Em F F#mb5

This straight line of chords are also called "Neighbor" chords, or even "Modal" chords.

But you see plenty of songs in G Major that use G Bb F and C. You can also find these chords in C Major and C Minor borrowed chords for the songs that contain these chords but are relative to C Major.

Now go back and examine some songs you find that don't stay on Key. This concept explains a lot.



Mike, just a question, Have you studied George Van Epps chord approach style?

Your explanation sort of got me thinking about this idea in a George Van Epps way.
#9
I don't know if this is relevant, but on rare occasions, I think I hear what I know as pitch control. A slight "speed" adjustment done in the studio to make a song sound faster/slower than it was actually performed. I haven't tested it, but I do believe I've heard some songs that have been altered in that way. Faster=slightly sharp, slower=slightly flat. Maybe it's just me.
#10
Quote by MikeDodge
Most rock type writing hardly ever stays in what we think as the "Key" based in a straight Diatonic Theory...except from the aspect of a Tonal Center. A Tonal Center can change harmonic aspects and still be considered a Tonal Center, or even a Tonic.

IOW, many songs are written with the Major Diatonic and the Minor Diatonic chords, together.

Major Diatonic Chords in G Major: G Am Bm C D Em F#mb5

Minor Diatonic Chords in Gm: Gm Amb5 Bb Cm Dm Eb F

These chords are, or this concept is, called "Borrowed chords" since the song might 'borrow' from both the Major and Minor Keys.

So, in the Key of Key G you could find

G Gm Am Am5b Bb Bm C Cm D Dm Eb Em F F#mb5

This straight line of chords are also called "Neighbor" chords, or even "Modal" chords.

But you see plenty of songs in G Major that use G Bb F and C. You can also find these chords in C Major and C Minor borrowed chords for the songs that contain these chords but are relative to C Major.

Now go back and examine some songs you find that don't stay on Key. This concept explains a lot.


Thanks for the explanation. That explains some of the rock stuff I was talking about, although there is some black metal I listen to that doesn't follow the rules.
#11
well the key really determines what notes you can use, you could say this gives you an inside sound. But you can use chromatic notes which are not in the key so you can use whatever you like as long as you come back to a stable note such as the root, fifth, 3rd
#12
Quote by Sean0913
Mike, just a question, Have you studied George Van Epps chord approach style?

Your explanation sort of got me thinking about this idea in a George Van Epps way.


No I'm not familiar with it, can you link me to something about it? I'd like to check it out.
#13
Quote by spacewasp
Thanks for the explanation. That explains some of the rock stuff I was talking about, although there is some black metal I listen to that doesn't follow the rules.


There's a lot of metal based on the Harmonic Minor scale/Phrygian Dominant scale. So the chords used are based on some of the chords from them. This leads you in the dim7 and augmented area's of metal too.

Like an E Phrygian Dominant would give you these Power Chords (no reference to M3 or m3's here, JUST Root and 5th power chords):

E F G#b5 A Bb5 Caug5 D E

So, from this scale you get a darker sound.

Here's a tutorial that covers some of it more from an 80's metal view: http://mikedodge.freeforums.org/cop-some-of-that-yngwie-and-harmonic-minor-diminished-sound-t29.html

That tutorial is more on the Yngwie stuff but covers where to find some of these chords in the Harmonic Minor/Phrygian Dominant scale.
Last edited by MikeDodge at Jan 1, 2010,