#1
Hello.

I used to be good at theory but I havent revised, looked at, or read a book or done practice questions in over 3 years because I was too busy studying for my chem degree. So music theory took a back seat for... well ages.

I have a set of questions about the song Slippery Wonderful Thing by Guthrie Govan.

The song starts on the E7 chord and the progression goes Bm7 D9 Gmaj7 F#alt and then back to Bm7 and repeat.

On analysis, the song starts on the IV of B minor (melodic form) and then the progression goes I III VI V... Howver, I do not understand what the F#alt chord should be. To me, the F#alt chord should be some kind of VII chord and not a V chord. I do not understand its function.

Also, the key signature is D major so wouldnt the actual progression starting on Bm7 be VI I IV VII?
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#2
An altered chord is a 7th chord with any of the following extensions: b5, #5, b9, #9

The altered chord does act as a V chord into the i chord which is Bm7.

More appropiate in this instance it's actual V7 - i7

B minor is the relative key of D Major so that would make sense.

The alteration is just to add more melodic possibilities, cause the 3rd in F#alt acts as the leading tone into Bm7. This is called an Harmonic minor convention.

What is an Harmonic minor convention?

An Harmonic minor convention came as followed. A perfect cadence in a major key is strong because of the leading tone resolves to the root of the I chord. (It's a half step away from it).

In C this would be G7 - C (B note is leading tone of G7 chord into the C note which is the root of the I chord).

Now in a minor key there's no leading tone, because the 7th is flattened. (Major 7th note becomes minor 7th note)

To make the resolution stronger, they took the minor key but raised (#) the 7th note back into a Major 7th note (a leading tone).


This note comes from the harmonic minor scale and hence it is called an harmonic minor convention, when the harmonic minor scale is briefly used to get the leading tone for a V7 to i.

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Last edited by xxdarrenxx at Jul 13, 2011,