#1
Does anyone have good tips on how to change key in a song? Whether it be major to minor(or vise versa) or to a different scale altogether.. I just recently started trying to write my own stuff, and I have the most trouble on this... ><

Any help is much appreciated!!
#3
Pretty much the point of key changes is to make things different so really there are no rules.
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#4
hello sir

think i might be able to semi answer your question so i'll give it a shot ;p
there are 5 keys people usually change to in a piece of music (if changing) that is relative minor (3 semi tones down) the dominant (5th note of the scale) the relative minor of the dominant, the sub-dominant (4th note of the scale) and the relative minor to the sub-dominant - this is becuase each of these keys only has either 0 or 1 more sharp or flat than the original so it doesn't sound too wrongish
sometimes people use accidentals to transition between keys but whatever it's worth just experienting, there are no set ways to do it necessarily

sorry if that was a load of bull you didn't care about :P hope it works
#5
And here's where I wish my teacher's didn't like quit out on me, x.x, Wait! I understood what matt means after a second read, but i'm more asking for like tips, as in, just change, or a smooth mold into it? cause most of what I do sounds bad...
#6
Just throw in the V7 or IIm-V7 of the new Key before changing it.

So regardless of the Key you're on, playing G7 or Dm-G7 will lead you to C. Playing F7 or Cm-F7 will lead you to Bb. Playing C7 or Gm-C7 will lead you to F. And so on.

Works every time. It's so free that you can try every Key and choose which one sounds the smoothest or the most deranged...but they ALL work.

I swear this is a reoccurring thread.
#7
i know exactly what you mean but it's one of those things that's pretty hard to explain without a method of showing you.
ultimately it depends what type of stuff you're playing, and what effect you want it to have, for example i'm a pianist so playing mellow piano stuff i use smooth transitioning stuff, often using weird chords like argmented fifths, again hard to explain with words :P but if you're playing rock etc sometimes it sounds good to just go straight into a different key
#8
I'm personally a fan of The Ramones' 'I Wanna Be Sedated' modulating the key up one whole step. Myself and my band were kinda stuck with one song we were writing, and we wanted to extend it and make it a bit more intense, and so we used a key change of this nature, and it worked out pretty well actually =P. That's a nice place to start if you've never dealt with harmonic modulation before, and if your songs are relatively simple, IMO.
#9
Quote by Slash_is_a_God
I'm personally a fan of The Ramones' 'I Wanna Be Sedated' modulating the key up one whole step. Myself and my band were kinda stuck with one song we were writing, and we wanted to extend it and make it a bit more intense, and so we used a key change of this nature, and it worked out pretty well actually =P. That's a nice place to start if you've never dealt with harmonic modulation before, and if your songs are relatively simple, IMO.
Yes, "shift modulations," usually by a half-step or a whole step are some of the simplest, most common types of modulations.

Outside of shift modulations, your main focus should be to try to find "pivot chords," (chords that occur in both keys) and use these to smoothly transition between the two keys. Another thing you can do is you can modulate through a few different keys before ending up in the desired key.

Going from the key of C to A for example, you could start off with a C major progression (C F G), then an A minor progression (Am G F E) and then from there you can use a picardy third to bring you to an A major chord and into the key of A major. This is a really simple example, but it demonstrates how to use chords and other keys as "pivots."

If you have any examples in specific, I can help you out with those.
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#11
quite a few ways, most are already mentioned.
first way is the all too common shift. Which is just move everything up a halfstep or a wholestep, Its used in a lot of popular music, and a good place to practice modulations.

another way is using the Dominant chord, just throwing in the V7 of the key you want to modulate to. It can be rough, but it can work in most cases.

Pivot chords are my favorite way. You look for a common chord in both keys, and just 'pivot' with that chord. Say you are in the key of Aminor, and you want to go to Gmajor. You could go Amin -> Fmaj -> Cmaj(Pivot) -> Dmaj-> Gmaj

And lastly, but I believe to be the least used, is shifting using a Dim7th chord, a 1 b3 b5 bb7 chord. These are commonly used to shift, but I forget exactly how.
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#12
^The dim7 chord is made up of two tritones and as such can resolve to a chord with a root that is one semitone above any of the four notes in the chord by acting as a kind of substitute for a V7 of the target chord.

Adding to the dominant you could, at some point, simply jump on to a cycle of fifths and get off when you reach your target key.

You could also use other kinds of "non diatonic" patterns, for example some kind of chromatic chordal sequence that steadily moves up or down to transition from one tonal centre to another.
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Last edited by 20Tigers at Sep 29, 2010,