#1
Can anyone help me with this?
Assuming I want to write chords for a song, how do I know which chords fit the best?
Should I go by root notes?
Quote by tattyreagh
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#2
You could start with root notes, then also see which other chords the particular vocal line note falls in.

For example, if the melody is in C major and the note is a C, you could use a C major chord, or any of the following to give more suspense:

Am (A C E)
F (F A C)
Dm7 (D F A C)

Including suggesting non-diatonic chords like:

Eb6 (Eb G Bb C) - obviously this would be a bIII chord, so be careful with that
Ab (Ab C Eb) - a bVI chord, which could work in eg. I - bVII - vi - bVI
Bbadd9 (Bb D F C) - gives a more Mixolydian flavour

Of course, you should let taste guide you - don't feel the need to play a different chord for every melody note unless it sounds good.
#3
But what if he changes the notes every time, for instance what if he sings:
C D D# F In one bar.
Should the chord have the notes C D F In it?
Quote by tattyreagh
He's the hero The Pit deserves but not the one it needs right now. So, we'll hunt him, because he can take it. Because he's not our hero. He's a silent guardian. A watchful protector. GbAdimDb5m7.


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Free Will Swanson
#4
Quote by GbAdimDb5m7
But what if he changes the notes every time, for instance what if he sings:
C D D# F In one bar.
Should the chord have the notes C D F In it?


If he started the song like that, I'd probably assume that the song was in C minor. Accordingly over this phrase you could play the C minor chord, but there's a lot of different options available to you.

Use this guide;

1. Identify vocal scale.

2. Identify key

3. Use chords commonly associated with that key whilst incorporating the vocal melody to create a chord progression.

There's a little trial and error involved, for instance over your singer's line above you could play a D# maj chord and it would be perfectly acceptable (relative major).
And no, Guitar Hero will not help. Even on expert. Really.
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#5
Quote by AlanHB
If he started the song like that, I'd probably assume that the song was in C minor. Accordingly over this phrase you could play the C minor chord, but there's a lot of different options available to you.

Use this guide;

1. Identify vocal scale.

2. Identify key

3. Use chords commonly associated with that key whilst incorporating the vocal melody to create a chord progression.

There's a little trial and error involved, for instance over your singer's line above you could play a D# maj chord and it would be perfectly acceptable (relative major).


Ah I see now, Ill get my friend to sing his song and Ill find the notes he sings then Ill start putting chords together.
I have another question:
What is the difference between a key and a scale?
I never understood, If you say that he is in the key of C he plays scales that are on C?
Like C Minor Harmonic or C minor/major?
Quote by tattyreagh
He's the hero The Pit deserves but not the one it needs right now. So, we'll hunt him, because he can take it. Because he's not our hero. He's a silent guardian. A watchful protector. GbAdimDb5m7.


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Free Will Swanson
#6
Quote by GbAdimDb5m7
But what if he changes the notes every time, for instance what if he sings:
C D D# F In one bar.
Should the chord have the notes C D F In it?

No - the general rule of thumb is that diatonic notes will sound decent over any diatonic chord, but you can use non-diatonic notes to make things more interesting - see how the melody notes relate to the underlying chord.
#7
Quote by GbAdimDb5m7

What is the difference between a key and a scale?
I never understood, If you say that he is in the key of C he plays scales that are on C?
Like C Minor Harmonic or C minor/major?


A "key", err, is basically a template for the song. So it prescribes what notes belong to it, as well as pointing out where the song resolves to.

The notes that belong to this key are what also creates the scale which goes over the key. And all chords within the key are created by notes of that scale prescribed by it.

I'm sure some theory dude can explain it better than I can for those two.

When I say "key of C MINOR" (not just key of C), I mean that he's using the notes of the C minor scale, so it was implying that the key was C minor. Vocalists will often stick to the notes of either the major or minor scales, and keep to them throughout the song. And that's just one scale, it's not too common to jump between the major and minor.

If you want a better grasp of what I'm talking about, learn some theory, you're in the right place.
And no, Guitar Hero will not help. Even on expert. Really.
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#8
Quote by AlanHB
A "key", err, is basically a template for the song. So it prescribes what notes belong to it, as well as pointing out where the song resolves to.

The notes that belong to this key are what also creates the scale which goes over the key. And all chords within the key are created by notes of that scale prescribed by it.

I'm sure some theory dude can explain it better than I can for those two.

When I say "key of C MINOR" (not just key of C), I mean that he's using the notes of the C minor scale, so it was implying that the key was C minor. Vocalists will often stick to the notes of either the major or minor scales, and keep to them throughout the song. And that's just one scale, it's not too common to jump between the major and minor.

If you want a better grasp of what I'm talking about, learn some theory, you're in the right place.


So assuming that someone is in the key of C Major and the notes are:

C D E F G A B C

So the only thing that fits here is the C major scale, I am still not sure about the difference between key and scale.

I have learnt some theory, I was just never sure about keys.
Quote by tattyreagh
He's the hero The Pit deserves but not the one it needs right now. So, we'll hunt him, because he can take it. Because he's not our hero. He's a silent guardian. A watchful protector. GbAdimDb5m7.


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#10
Quote by Sean0913
Yeah, have you ever looked or studied what a Harmonized major scale is? You might start there. That will answer a lot of questions for you.

I know what a major scale is And If I take a major scale I know which chords fit to it if that's what you mean by harmonizing.
Quote by tattyreagh
He's the hero The Pit deserves but not the one it needs right now. So, we'll hunt him, because he can take it. Because he's not our hero. He's a silent guardian. A watchful protector. GbAdimDb5m7.


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Free Will Swanson
#11
That's right, so those chords are what we'd call the Key. But the key is also seen as other things, like where the notes ultimately want to resolve. Those chords in that Major scale, are what makes up chords in that key form a purely diatonic sense. Its best to understand that as primarily what it means before taking on outside chords and tones and trying to make sense of it all.

Best

Sean
#12
Quote by Sean0913
That's right, so those chords are what we'd call the Key. But the key is also seen as other things, like where the notes ultimately want to resolve. Those chords in that Major scale, are what makes up chords in that key form a purely diatonic sense. Its best to understand that as primarily what it means before taking on outside chords and tones and trying to make sense of it all.

Best

Sean


So if Im in the key of C major, the notes ultimately want to resolve to the C major chord?

I am still not sure about the difference between a scale and a key:

C major scale: C D E F G A B C

C Major key: C D E F G A B C

What is the difference?
Quote by tattyreagh
He's the hero The Pit deserves but not the one it needs right now. So, we'll hunt him, because he can take it. Because he's not our hero. He's a silent guardian. A watchful protector. GbAdimDb5m7.


Free Jani92jani

Free Will Swanson
#13
When I first started songwriting...I would start with the Open Root chord I like for the key (can always move it around later with a capo to get "right key").  Go online and find the chords that go with that Root Chord.   Start singing your melody to that chord then when you feel the vocal melody needs a change, test out the other chords to find your next chord.  Then do the same again.  You may find that it only needs 2 chords or is better with a lot of changes.  Usually, keep it simple to build the frame and record quick demo.   Listen back and see where you may want to switch out a few chords to give a little more excitement to song.  

Over time, your ear will develop a memory for chord changes and vocal changes.  A vocal melody will pop in your head, and instantly know the affect an A will have in the key of D for instance.

Chris Cornell mentioned this when he did his Audioslave then his solo album...he mentioned with each album, the time to write songs decreased exponentially because he could match chords to the vocals in his head faster. 
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#14
nemjeff13

When somebody necrobumps an old thread, I often make the joke that they either figured it out already, gave up, or died with in those X number of years. In this case however I won't make that joke because TS did in fact die during his time in the Israeli military (though I personally do not know the cause of death).
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