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#1
Ok, so I either have this shit down finally or I am losing it.

So in a major chord progression in C, the VII is the diminished chord, VI is a minor chord (for the aeolian mode) and V is a major (or dominant) chord for mixolydian and so on an so forth.

So in a minor progression in A, would the II be the diminished chord? (for the locrian mode)
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#3
Yes is all correct. Not so sure about the minor progression in A and II being dminished but it seems to make sense.
#4
Disregard the modes entirely for what you're trying to understand. They hold no relevance in determining the chords you want to find.

In a major key, the chords go:

I-ii-iii-IV-V-vi-vii*

Capitals mean major, lowercase is minor, little asterick means diminished. That much you seem to get.

In a minor key

i-ii*-III-iv-v-VI-VII

So yes, the ii chord is diminished. Just throwin these at ya so you have a reference to look at.

EDIT: Holy coincidence v

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Last edited by valennic at Apr 26, 2011,
#5
If you're talking about harmonizing the major and minor scales? The harmonizing is generally different for minor scales.

Maybe It'll help to look at it this way, if we're basing our roman numerals off of the major scale then you have this for C Major

I - ii - iii - IV - V - vi - vii° - I
C- d -e - F - G - a - b° - C

For a minor scale, here we use A:

i - ii° - III - iv - v - VI - VII
a - b° - C - d - e - F - G


Yes, in a natural minor scale the ii° is diminished.

EDIT: Well you beat me to it haha. Mind jinx.
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Last edited by Zamorak at Apr 26, 2011,
#6
Quote by Sobriquet
Ok, so I either have this shit down finally or I am losing it.

So in a major chord progression in C, the VII is the diminished chord, VI is a minor chord (for the aeolian mode) and V is a major (or dominant) chord for mixolydian and so on an so forth.

So in a minor progression in A, would the II be the diminished chord? (for the locrian mode)


So when you apply all is said above, in particular the roman numerals and differences between upper and lower case, and the fact that modes are completely irrelevant in major or minor keys;

In the key of C major;

VII is a major chord built off the 7th note. It is B major.

VI is a major chord built off the 6th note. It is A major.

V is a major chord built off the 5th note. It is B major.

And so forth.

In the key of A minor;

II would be a major chord built off the 2nd note. It is B major.
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#8
Ok, I think I've got it. Now on to my next question. I learned modal shapes first, much like box forms for scales, before learning chords. I then learned how to build triads, 7ths, you-name-it, etc. buy apply the scale degree formula for those chords on the modal shapes (example: The 1, 3, 5, and 7 notes of the "lydian"shape for a given key form a major 7th, which checks out in said key's chord progression. I understand this is backasswords, but where will I get steered wrong since everything checks out?

I guess I see it as I=Ionian, ii=Dorian, iii=Phrygian, IV=Lydian, V=Mixolydian, vi=Aeolian, vii*=Locrian.
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#9
Quote by Sobriquet
Ok, I think I've got it. Now on to my next question. I learned modal shapes first, much like box forms for scales, before learning chords. I then learned how to build triads, 7ths, you-name-it, etc. buy apply the scale degree formula for those chords on the modal shapes (example: The 1, 3, 5, and 7 notes of the "lydian"shape for a given key form a major 7th, which checks out in said key's chord progression. I understand this is backasswords, but where will I get steered wrong since everything checks out?

I guess I see it as I=Ionian, ii=Dorian, iii=Phrygian, IV=Lydian, V=Mixolydian, vi=Aeolian, vii*=Locrian.


Wrong. Modes don't apply.
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#10
But my understanding of chords in a key based off that is right. Where am I off?
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#11
Quote by Sobriquet
But my understanding of chords in a key based off that is right. Where am I off?


You're confusing positions on the fretboard with modes. You're always playing the notes of the C major scale in the key of C major, so you are always playing the C major scale.

If there is a key, there is not a mode. They have different rules of functional harmony.

The roman numerals indicate: (a) the note which forms the root of the chord, (b) the type of the chord. Nothing more. They are not in itself indicative of a key, scale or mode, simply chords in relation to the parent scale.
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#13
Quote by jayx124
you are implying CST (chord scale theory) which means that each chord is built on a scale/mode - that's a legit way of looking at it


Oh really. Whilst that's an advanced concept and completely legitimate way of visualising accidentals to the major and minor scales AFTER you understand major and minor scales, keys and such, does this

Quote by Sobriquet
I learned modal shapes first, much like box forms for scales, before learning chords.


sound like someone who understands that concept?
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#14
The way I understand it is that if you take the major scale in whatever key and lay it out like

C d e F G a b*

Then the relative minor would be the exact same except the tonic would be the vi of the major scale and you can just start from the vi of the major scale and use the same notes. Like you take the vi, then the vii, and just start over from the start of the major scale and you have your minor scale.

So the relative minor of c would be Am which would be a b* C d e F G
#15
Quote by AlanHB
Oh really. Whilst that's an advanced concept and completely legitimate way of visualising accidentals to the major and minor scales AFTER you understand major and minor scales, keys and such, does this


sound like someone who understands that concept?


Well, I understand that modal harmony is something different. And I'll never confuse the two. CST-is this a more legit way of describing the way I visualize chords in a key?

And for the record, I am not "box-shape" limited. I can play scales/note collections many ways, what-have-you laterally and all that jazz. I always interpreted "modes" as playing licks going from note X to note X in the context of a modal progression vamp, going from something like Em7b5 to EM7, and playing, say, the E locrian over the Em7b5 and the E Ionian over the EM7. Is this true? Would this define E as the "tonal centre?". I never thought I was "right" or really cared, I'm not a ****ing jazz musician lol.
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Last edited by Sobriquet at Apr 27, 2011,
#16
Quote by Sobriquet
But my understanding of chords in a key based off that is right. Where am I off?



You are making things WAY WAY WAY too complicated.


Look at the staff.

THe bass clef of F clef has lines and spaces. THe lines are lettered G B D F A -- Great Big Dog's Fight Animals. The spaces are A C E G -- All Cows Eat Grass. Look that the Treble or G clef -- the Lines are lettered E G B D F - Every Good Boy Does Fine. THe Spaces are lettered F A CE .. that is easy. There is one line and two spaces between the F clef and the G clef -- the Line is C -- as in Middle C in a Piano (guitar plays up one octave to get most of the notes on the treble clef). The space below it is a B the space above is a D.

Triadic harmony -- chords based on thirds are ALL based off the staff.

What's an E chord?

If E G B are the lowest three lines on the F clef and the distance from E to G is a minor third -- E G B is an E minor chord -- no matter what key you are in that is ALWAYS true.

If you are in the Key of A, there are 3 sharps -- F#, C# and G#

E G# B is an E major chord -- exactly the same spelling .. you just look at they key to figure out if it is major or minor.

Forget the modes ... put them put of your mind once and forever .. all you ever need to know is the grand staff .. this will tell you everything about harmony -- what notes are in chords, what notes are in scales, how to harmonize any of the 22 distinct major and minor scales ... and so on and so forth. If you learn the grand staff and completely forget modes you will do yourself a HUGE favor and you will understand how to spell every major and minor chord in every key .. you can even do maj7, min7 and dominant 7 chords .. hell - you can even figure out how to spell the Tristan chord!
#17
^ you could of just said half diminished/incomplete major ninth. Let's not start a craze of theory newbies boasting about knowing tristan, Petruska, Mystic and Elektra chords
#18
Quote by Zen Skin
You are making things WAY WAY WAY too complicated.


No, I am not.

So far, everything I've deduced from looking at music from this perspective has checked out, and it seems far simpler than looking at the Grand Staff, although I understand that relationship as well. I'm getting the sinking feeling that I'm arguing semantics. I know that what I stated above isn't very far off of true modal theory, and I'm going to patch up the holes in that when I can actually name the way I see chords. What is CST specifically?
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Last edited by Sobriquet at Apr 27, 2011,
#19
Quote by Sobriquet
No, I am not.

...



Hold on and hear me out on this.

Which is easier.

Learn two diatonic scales -- apply them across keys and use the mnemonics of the grand staff or remember the particulars of 7 modes, what chords and and basic scales they are related to, how to move through all keys with them.

I certainly understand how and why you want to connect D to D with no accidentals. That's fine -- and getting that under your fingers is useful -- but it is still a pattern of half and whole steps -- so, why make it more complicated? It's based off of the major scale .. all you ever really have to know is the major scale to get most of the chords you want to play. You don't have to memorize 7 scales across 11 keys. Just learn a few ways of playing the major scale and a few ways of playing the natural minor scale and you can do a lot.
#20
Well, damn. What do I do now that I've memorized 7 scales across 11 keys and can apply said knowledge? I just want to be able to talk theory without getting yelled out for a perhaps quirky but non-the-less accurate way of perceiving things.

DAMN YOU ADAM KADMON! DAMN YOU!

And let me get this off my chest finally. Whether or not people understand modes in the "true" way, there is an unmistakable flavor invoked by starting a riff in C major on the E and ending on the E. Why can't we call this the Phrygian? What is a proper frame of reference?
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Last edited by Sobriquet at Apr 27, 2011,
#21
Quote by Sobriquet
Well, damn. What do I do now that I've memorized 7 scales across 11 keys and can apply said knowledge? I just want to be able to talk theory without getting yelled out for a perhaps quirky but non-the-less accurate way of perceiving things.

DAMN YOU ADAM KADMON! DAMN YOU!

And let me get this off my chest finally. Whether or not people understand modes in the "true" way, there is an unmistakable flavor invoked by starting a riff in C major on the E and ending on the E. Why can't we call this the Phrygian? What is a proper frame of reference?


There's a million and 1 melodies that start and end on a E that use the notes of C major, that are in the key of C major.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7n78rcVoIr8

0:58, melody starts on E...

Total Phrygianz
#22
Quote by Sobriquet
Well, damn. What do I do now that I've memorized 7 scales across 11 keys and can apply said knowledge?


You toil and toil and no one appreciates it .... * sigh *

Quote by Sobriquet
And let me get this off my chest finally. Whether or not people understand modes in the "true" way, there is an unmistakable flavor invoked by starting a riff in C major on the E and ending on the E. Why can't we call this the Phrygian? What is a proper frame of reference?


To me, that is just C or A minor depending on what chords you are using around it. The fact that you have these under your fingers just gives you more ways to play a major scale -- I think that is a good thing. Understanding how that simple scale can't be used to paint different shades is also really useful.

The reason it is not the Phrygian mode is we are using tonal centers in our music. If you are in the key of E minor, E is the tonal center and the mode is minor. We are not playing an E drone note and slavishly sticking to a scale with no sharps or flats while we sing a monophonic chant. Even if you play F in place of F sharp, the mode is still minor, the tonal center is still E. If you look at classical Indian music you will see where "modality" as gone ... Ragas are more than scales -- they are, like the 8 church modes, associated to certain times of the day, certain activities, certain instrumentation and certain accepted tempos and talas. Not only does the raga dictate the scale, but also the microtonal bends allowed in the scale for that given prayer and setting and time of day and tala. Western music does not sound like Sitar music because we have sharps, flats and keys. We are not using modes.

It is also a huge issue when guitarists talk to other musicians who do not play guitar and actually have some formal training on, say, brass or woodwind. They got modes for one hour as part of some class a few years ago and immediately forgot about them and got on with learning music. A guitar player walks in and says "Check out this G mixolydian riff" and they fall over laughing. most of the time the guitar player can't read a note, has never formally studied music and honestly thinks that dropping some ancient Greek word will make up for a lack of training.
#23
"I always interpreted "modes" as playing licks going from note X to note X in the context of a modal progression vamp, going from something like Em7b5 to EM7, and playing, say, the E locrian over the Em7b5 and the E Ionian over the EM7. Is this true? Would this define E as the "tonal centre?"

Ok, where was I wrong here. Is establishing a tonal centre the desired effect in modal music, or not. I'm not arguing, I'm getting my story straight.
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#24
TS, I actually agree with how you are thinking about the arrangement and relationships of harmonies based on modal concepts. And you are on the right path.

Harmony is modular. Think of a clock: no matter which number you are on, the other numbers stay the same and everything relays back to that number.

So if we think about the modes in which C is the ionian, D is always going to be the lydian, E the phrygian, etc. So in constructing the 4 part harmonies out of these modes, they, too, will remain the same. However, their RELATIVE position in relations to a tonic is what changes.

So just as you suspected, if we switch from C ionian (which was the tonal center before) to A aeolian (which is now the I), a B-7b5 is still constructed out of B locrian. But in relations to A, it is ii-7b5.

Does this help?

...modes and scales are still useless.


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#25
Quote by Sobriquet
Ok, where was I wrong here. Is establishing a tonal centre the desired effect in modal music, or not. I'm not arguing, I'm getting my story straight.
No, it's not. However, establishing a tonal center IS the desired effect in tonal music, so starting and ending on a scale degree other than the root isn't going to change a damn thing.
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#26
Quote by Sobriquet
And let me get this off my chest finally. Whether or not people understand modes in the "true" way, there is an unmistakable flavor invoked by starting a riff in C major on the E and ending on the E. Why can't we call this the Phrygian?


Is this the flavour you are referring to? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LcqHxnGfV7c
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#28
Quote by Sobriquet
You are very obtuse for a mod.


I'm not sure what that means, except if I'm over 90 degree angle wise.

By your definition, that song would be in phrygian. It obviously isn't.
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#29
Quote by AlanHB
I'm not sure what that means, except if I'm over 90 degree angle wise.

By your definition, that song would be in phrygian. It obviously isn't.


Well, yeah. I know this is a dumb question, but I haven't entirely ruled out the whole I-might-be-dumb thing. Why isn't that in E phrygian? And why is it obvious? Isn't the definition of Phrygian a series of whole-half steps, related to the major scale?
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#30
Quote by Sobriquet
Well, yeah. I know this is a dumb question, but I haven't entirely ruled out the whole I-might-be-dumb thing. Why isn't that in E phrygian? And why is it obvious? Isn't the definition of Phrygian a series of whole-half steps, related to the major scale?


Phyrigian is a mode. Modes have their own set of rules pertaining to them, but we can safely say the song in question was in a major key as it has a simple I - IV - V progression, with each chord diatonic to the resolving chord, which is a major chord. The melody simply started on the 3rd note of that major scale, nothing more.

Seriously you couldn't mistake it for anything except major.

You aren't "dumb", you've just been given a whole heap of misinformation. Now it's time to go back to the start and learn again.

www.musictheory.net
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#31
Quote by AlanHB
Oh really. Whilst that's an advanced concept and completely legitimate way of visualising accidentals to the major and minor scales AFTER you understand major and minor scales, keys and such, does this


This is not as advanced as you think it just formulates it differently using the 1 - 3 - 5 - 7 formula on the scale/mode to construct the chords. The CST makes it easier to analyze the harmony because you can figure out the parent key center.

Regarding improvisation using the CST this IMHO is just to complicated when improvising on a functional harmony
#32
Quote by jayx124
This is not as advanced as you think it just formulates it differently using the 1 - 3 - 5 - 7 formula on the scale/mode to construct the chords. The CST makes it easier to analyze the harmony because you can figure out the parent key center.


I may be misunderstanding you, but are you saying it's easier to use CST theory to find the key of a song than simply pointing out where it resolves? It sounds like a round-about theory to me, as the key would have to be found anyway to employ the CST....

Additionally CST works on the principle that each chord would be regarded in it's own world. So in the key of C major if there was an E chord played, over this chord you could use E major, E lydian or E phryg. If you were using CST and always played that E phryg, there would be no point to using this theory as you would simply be playing the C major scale. Using E major or E phryg you would also be playing the C major scale, but with added accidentals. Oh, the E phryg would clash with that chord and not sound great either (as would the C major scale)
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#33
^
It is just another instrument to figure out chord - scale/mode relations. It has it implementation in functional harmony but the implementation IMHO is to hard when you have lots of changing chords and need to switch mode for each chord. But it can become handy in different situations where you can not figure out the chord progression and thus do not know the parent key center. this may occur when there are multiple substitutions of dom7 chords. I would tackle this situation by just targeting the chord tones, but you can in this situation implement the relevant mode.

I'm not a fan of the CST - you can look it up on the net
you can start here:
http://www.berklee.edu/bt/121/chord.html
#34
So for you CST is a method of trial and error with notes if you can't figure out where a progression resolves.

But what does this have to do with the TS's misunderstanding in relation to modes?
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#35
Quote by AlanHB
So for you CST is a method of trial and error with notes if you can't figure out where a progression resolves.

How did you come up with that conclusion?

Quote by AlanHB

But what does this have to do with the TS's misunderstanding in relation to modes?

all I'm saying is that you can construct the chords by using the 1-3-5-7 on the modes
#36
Quote by jayx124
How did you come up with that conclusion?

all I'm saying is that you can construct the chords by using the 1-3-5-7 on the modes


Well you said if you cant figure out the key, or chords, use CST to figure it out. Obviously you'd cycle through some random selections of notes until you got to the end, and we're left with random guessing in effect.

You can create chords with major and minor scales too. Im really missing your point about harmonising modes.
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#37
Quote by AlanHB
Well you said if you cant figure out the key, or chords, use CST to figure it out. Obviously you'd cycle through some random selections of notes until you got to the end, and we're left with random guessing in effect.

You can create chords with major and minor scales too. Im really missing your point about harmonising modes.


what I said is that in that situation I would target the chord tones. but using the chord's mode can also achieve this although you may want to play a relatively safe mode for example you may want to play the lydian mode because the natural 4 is an avoid note of the I, and the #4 is a valid extension.

In any case I don't play like that but it's an option
#38
Quote by jayx124
what I said is that in that situation I would target the chord tones. but using the chord's mode can also achieve this although you may want to play a relatively safe mode for example you may want to play the lydian mode because the natural 4 is an avoid note of the I, and the #4 is a valid extension.

In any case I don't play like that but it's an option


Sorry, in which situation would you play the lydian mode?
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#40
How do you know what extentions you're playing if you don't know the root of the chord? Why play lydian when 99.9% of songs are in major or minor keys?

I agree that targeting chord tones is a great way to solo, but I dont know how you pick them if you dont know what chord it is, or what this has to do with modes at all.
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