#1
Hey I really like Lydian, but i'm having trouble with chord progressions that give an a lydian feel, as opposed to say a relative minor feel, but just anchoring on the lydian mode.

Confusing much?

Hope you guys can help
UG's New Zealand Resident!
#3
I II III IV V VI VII
Ionian maj min min maj maj min dim Major Scale (Diatonic)
Dorian min min b maj maj min dim b maj
Phrygian min b maj b maj min dim b maj b maj
Lydian maj maj min # dim maj min min
Mixolydian maj min dim maj min min b maj
Aeolian min dim b maj min min b maj b maj Minor Scale
Locrian dim b maj b min min b maj b maj b min

Major maj min min maj maj min dim Ionian Mode
Minor min dim b maj min min b maj b maj Aeolian Mode
Harmonic Minor min dim b aug min maj b maj dim
Melodic Minor min min b aug maj maj dim dim

So use:

Lydian - Imaj IImaj IIImin IV#dim Vmaj VImin VIImin
Last edited by Ultima2876 at Jul 23, 2011,
#4
I use the lydian mode a lot, it's tricky coz of the chord IVdim. you can always just skip over it and have like a I-ii-V progression for instance, or you can substitute the diminished chord for a minor chord, or just use powerchords so like, let's say C lydian you could just have C5-E5-F#5-G5 or something. other than that, all i can really say is **** around until something sounds good, same as any other scale/mode
#5
Quote by ippystratman
I use the lydian mode a lot, it's tricky coz of the chord IVdim. you can always just skip over it and have like a I-ii-V progression for instance, or you can substitute the diminished chord for a minor chord [...]


First of all, in Lydian, the chord progression would be a I - II - V. Second, this looks just like a IV - V - I in a major key, which pretty much strips any chance of this thing being Lydian. Remember, it has to resolve to the Lydian tonic over every other possibility; you can't just arbitrarily label one chord the I and hope it works.

If you substitute the diminished chord with a minor chord, you'd just be using borrowed harmony and it would destroy your purely modal application.

supersac's idea is good. In a modal setting, you're likely only got to get one-three chords in before it starts resolving to the Major or Minor key. Plus, these chords have to be used well, e.g. that I - II - V likely wouldn't help you.

Why not play in a major key with a Lydian influence instead? It'll be much easier, you'll have more possibilities and you can still get some of that characteristic sound.
Nothing that is worthwhile in life will ever come easy.
#7
Quote by ippystratman
I use the lydian mode a lot, it's tricky coz of the chord IVdim. you can always just skip over it and have like a I-ii-V progression for instance, or you can substitute the diminished chord for a minor chord, or just use powerchords so like, let's say C lydian you could just have C5-E5-F#5-G5 or something. other than that, all i can really say is **** around until something sounds good, same as any other scale/mode


not modal. just because of the F#5. if it was F# diminished, i might have agreed with you, because if you're smart about it, you can sometimes get a V-I to work in lydian without sounding major. but that F#5 contains C#, and you're just bringing in accidentals, which are just going to make it feel like it's tonal. i know that generally the fifth is just there for strengthening the root, but it's still there. and sovietska already touched on the minor chord thing. and the I-II-V (since I-II-V in C lydian is C - D - G, which is exactly the same as a IV-V-I in G, so that's going to destroy your modality). quite frankly, everything you have here is not modal, but tonal. remember -- just because you're using an F# and resolving to the C doesn't make it lydian (normally it would, but other factors are involved, too).

if you really want to stay true lydian, go with supersac's idea -- a I-II seldom fails.
Anfangen ist leicht, Beharren eine Kunst.
#8
Quote by Darkmessiahnz
Hey I really like Lydian, but i'm having trouble with chord progressions that give an a lydian feel, as opposed to say a relative minor feel, but just anchoring on the lydian mode.

Confusing much?

Hope you guys can help

I suggest you work on your tonal harmony first before getting into modes.
^^The above is a Cryptic Metaphor^^


"To know the truth of history is to realize its ultimate myth and its inevitable ambiguity." Everything is made up and the facts don't matter.


MUSIC THEORY LINK
#10
i have a question. you know the standard Ionian and Aeolian chord families and how the V chord wants to resolve to the I chord the most etc. well does the same thing apply to the other modes of the major scale? Like for the harmonised Dorian scale...would it be as simple to create a sense of Dorian resolution as easy as it would be for say Ionian?

Or are the modes harder to work with...?
Last edited by Unreal T at Jul 23, 2011,
#11
Modes are quite harder to work with.

There aren't really progressions with modes because it is all to easy for them to become either major or minor. They are usually static two (maybe three) chord vamps because going too far will result in a tonal sound. You can make a modal progression, but usually it must involve a drone note and highlighting the color tone of the mode to prevent it from going tonal.

By the way, when referencing to the major and minor scales, call them major and minor. Saying Ionian and Aeolian only indicated that you don't know what you are talking about.
^^The above is a Cryptic Metaphor^^


"To know the truth of history is to realize its ultimate myth and its inevitable ambiguity." Everything is made up and the facts don't matter.


MUSIC THEORY LINK
#12
Quote by rockingamer2
I suggest you work on your tonal harmony first before getting into modes.

I meant the minor mode of the key. Plus, yeah I was noodling round before and the I-II chord vamp sounds pretty lydianish.

Also, do you consider changing tonal centers within a key modulation? EG I'm playing with an obvious minor scale i-iv-v chord progression - Eminor, Aminor, Bminor...
Then I go to 'modulate' to lydian and start playing I-II eg Cmaj, Dmaj. Would that actually be modulation and do you consider that sort of thing actually playing in Lydian?

Like my problem is I understand what Lydian is, but I try to do something with it and then someone tells me it's not Lydian - you know the usual modal problems.
UG's New Zealand Resident!
#13
Quote by Darkmessiahnz
Also, do you consider changing tonal centers within a key modulation? EG I'm playing with an obvious minor scale i-iv-v chord progression - Eminor, Aminor, Bminor...
Then I go to 'modulate' to lydian and start playing I-II eg Cmaj, Dmaj. Would that actually be modulation and do you consider that sort of thing actually playing in Lydian?


in this case? no. why? Cmaj and Dmaj are both in the key of E minor, the resolution to which the listener has already heard. so you'll still be playing in E minor. unless you could find a convincing way to modulate to C lydian (Gmaj -> Cmaj won't work, remember?) for the I-II deal, it's not going to work here.

see why modes are so restrictive? i mean, they're worth knowing, but they're extremely limited.
Anfangen ist leicht, Beharren eine Kunst.
#15
You could just vamp a major 7 chord with a #11
The guy's a beast, but he uses 8s. So he's shit.
-juckfush on Alex Hutchings.
#16
Quote by ibanez1511
Imaj7 to VIIm7 is a good solid lydian harmony

so with a tonic of C :
|cmaj7|Bm7|


I find this one generally pulls towards the Bm7, making it a Phrygian idea. But, hey, if it sounds right, it sounds right.
Nothing that is worthwhile in life will ever come easy.
#17
Quote by Darkmessiahnz


Like my problem is I understand what Lydian is, but I try to do something with it and then someone tells me it's not Lydian - you know the usual modal problems.


Tell you what, we'll make it easy. Use the Lydian in a Major Key, because thats what your'e going to be doing anyways, and play with it using the off notes as color or passing tones. Just become skilled at knowing how to do it, because some tones, if you aren't skilled are going to sound BAD if you just land on it ignorantly. Just work the process out by ear.

Here's the thing, you'll use the Lydian scale, but you won't be playing in the Lydian mode. That's the best I can do for you, if you don't have the requisite background knowledge. No one wants to rain on your parade, but no one wants you to be ignorant either, or to spread that ignorance to others in this forum that may be reading your topic.

If you really want to have a somewhat immediate chance at understanding theory and Modes, read Mike Dodges sticky in the Modes sticky. If you follow it and understand it, voila, then you're golden. If you can't, and it all flies over your head, well then...I've proven my point then, haven't I?

Best,

Sean
Last edited by Sean0913 at Jul 24, 2011,
#18
Wait I've got the way I did it at the point where I finally knew how to create modes.
To first capture the true feel of lydian, you must loop a major chord.
For instance, in the material of Cmajor, our F note is the lydian mode.
So loop a F chord and look up all the arpeggios for F major.
Well all I did was have 1 shape, you can do that too.
So like you're basically going to play over that F major chord, with those/that arpeggio(s).
But if you're playing just the F major arpeggio no-one will ever be able to say that's lydian.
You need to add some other notes to color it up.
I soon noticed that that lydian sound comes from the augumented 4th, well, in my case it was the B note, because I lacked interval knowledge at the time.
But the most important notes is your arpeggios and you need to add up some shizzle.
#19
I know for sure how to play a lydian scale (what ever I don't give shit if it's not scale tha'ts what I'm calling it, I know it's the 4th mode of major scale) over a major progression. I want a lydian progression( IE a modal feel,not major) and I think I have it. To me this sounds like it resolves on Lydian.

Someone mentioned it before IM7 - VII m. Also does this sound modal to anyone IM7+11 - VIm7 - VM7>
UG's New Zealand Resident!
#20
Quote by Darkmessiahnz
Someone mentioned it before IM7 - VII m. Also does this sound modal to anyone IM7+11 - VIm7 - VM7>


Nope.
And no, Guitar Hero will not help. Even on expert. Really.
Soundcloud
#22
Quote by Darkmessiahnz
Can you explain?


Well it's basically an I - vi - V progression, an extremely common major progression with an extremely strong pull to the I, a major chord. It's simply major.

As mentioned above, you can play the lydian SCALE over it, but it'll never be modal.
And no, Guitar Hero will not help. Even on expert. Really.
Soundcloud
#23
Since we are on the topic of the Lydian mode. Has anyone read up on the Lydian chromatic concept by George Russell? I found it in my local library and it is quite interesting. Although I don't fully understand it.
#24
Basically, there is no such thing as a modal "chord progression" in the same sense that harmony functions in tonal music. The very nature of modal music is that you're essentially droning on the character of the mode, which is why it naturally lends itself to things like two-chord vamps and chord-scale stuff that isn't really a progression at all.

It is of course true that you can build chords out of the notes of a mode in the same way that you can with the major or minor scale, but the more you keep adding something resembling harmonic movement away from "home" the more it starts to resemble tonal music.
#25
Ahhh yeah I see that now. So any ideas on how I can actually use it?

Also if I said it had a 'lydian feel' especially that M7#11 chord. Would that be accurate? Farer out when people say modes are hardly 'actually' used they are right.
UG's New Zealand Resident!
Last edited by Darkmessiahnz at Aug 16, 2011,
#26
I don't think it's wrong to have a mental association with lydian whenever you see a major7 with a #11, or be reminded of lydian dominant when you see a dominant 7 with a #11. But it really depends on the context in which the chord is being used. If it's in the context of a chord progression, it wouldn't make sense to say you're playing "in lydian" (say, an Bbmajor7#11 followed by A7 followed by Dmin11; clearly you're in D minor). If it's more or less droned or played as one shape among many over a drone, then you would be playing "in lydian".
#27
If you've never messed with tunes that are considered modal you most likely won't know this until you do...modal progressions that are written for one mode can be very drab and stagnant. IOW, creating "progression" using nothing but chords derived from nothing but one mode isn't usually any more fulfilling than just using a static one chord vamp (a maj7/#11 in the case of Lydian). Most times the more chords you use from a mode end up giving you the sound of the Major or Minor scale they are derived from more than a mode itself.

For a real modal progression, try building a progression that moves through different modes and resolves back to Lydian, and in your case have it landing on a Lydian mode or two through the progression.

For instances and this is a great Lydian progression...not every chord is built from the Lydian scale, but it all resolves back to Lydian...


||: Eadd9 | Eadd9sus#11 | Eadd9 | Eadd9sus#11 | Gadd9 | Gadd9sus#11 | Gadd9 | Gadd9sus#11 | Aadd9 | Aadd9sus#11  Aadd9 | Aadd9sus#11 | Eadd9 | Eadd9sus#11 :||


With that you use 3 Lydian scales: E Lydian, G Lydian, and A Lydian.

Here's a trimmed down backing track: http://test.mikedodge.com/mvdmusic/miked/LydianAbility_Backing.mp3

It's Lydian heaven, and it'll bust your chops you play over something that moves instead of something that's stagnant, or stuck in one scale.

I have a good amount of lessons on the Lydian mode if you really want to dig in...

A 4 Part Series (ala Satch, Vai, Johnson):

Part 1: http://lessons.mikedodge.com/lessons/Lydian/LydianPatterns1.htm
Part 2: http://lessons.mikedodge.com/lessons/Lydian/LydianPatterns2.htm
Part 3: http://lessons.mikedodge.com/lessons/Lydian/LydianPatterns3.htm
Part 4: http://lessons.mikedodge.com/lessons/Lydian/LydianPatterns4.htm

Lydian Fodder: http://mikedodge.freeforums.org/lydian-fodder-t31.html

That will take you a bunch of Lydian approaches to some different types of music.
Last edited by MikeDodge at Aug 16, 2011,
#28
Quote by Darkmessiahnz
Farer out when people say modes are hardly 'actually' used they are right.


No they are not.

Modes aren't used every where, and you need a strong background in Key, cadences, interchange, borrow chords, etc, etc...to get a clear idea when you might even want to consider thinking modes or not. IOW, "modes" is not a "blanket" type theory, "modes" are specifically used when they are needed.

But beware, you just went from asking about the Lydian modes to asking about all modes. Just pick a mode and milk it for all it's worth learning when and when you don't need to be concerned. Since it's not a blanket type scale like many players think the Blues scale is, learn to use each mode individually instead or all the modes globally.
Last edited by MikeDodge at Aug 16, 2011,