#1
I just read the thread about modes and I have some questions.

If I have a chord progression that is in C major, what mode do I use over it to make it sound minor?

I tried playing A minor over it, but it still sounded like C major.
#2
you arent able to play different scales over other ones... different modes will have the same notes in them as others but you still have to play the progressions in the same key as the rest. the minor mode is aeolian by the way. that just means that the order of the notes changes. the equivalent to C major is A aeolian.
#3
find a chord without the major 3rd of C and play any mode with the minor third of C. You cant play a minor scale over a Maj chord because it will clash too much.(unless you want that)
C, Dm, Em, F, G, Am, and Bdim are the basic triad chords of the cmajor scale.... so go into any of those chords that dont have an E(the major third of C) and play any mode that has an Eb(the minor 3rd of C).

So, Dm, F, G, and Bdim are the chords that dont have the Maj third of C in them. so when those chords come along in the progression, play a lick in any mode that has the 1,3,5 of that chord and an Eb . Thats how i was taught in jazz improv, anway...

Dm for example...you need a minor mode in D that has the notes D,F, and A. all other notes are free game. The mode doesnt need to have a C, E, G, or B because they arent in that chord. I would use D phrygian and try to stay away from landing the A# for too long(to not clash with the A). Another good one is the D half-whole diminished scale.

When the chord changes, you need to change to a mode that fits THAT chord. Ive been doing it for years and recently learned that it is called the Chord-Scale theory. Its gonna sound weird and a little dissonant, but jazz ppl really like it. in rock music, i personally just stick to the key... maybe with a random little mode lick. thats just how i like my rock music. ill run blues pentatonic all day.

It gets really complex when you get into chords with 4-6 notes. like dom7 and dom13 chords.
Last edited by ciano16 at Aug 20, 2011,
#4
Quote by CrispyGuitar
I just read the thread about modes and I have some questions.

If I have a chord progression that is in C major, what mode do I use over it to make it sound minor?

I tried playing A minor over it, but it still sounded like C major.



You can't - you define a core misunderstanding of Chords and scales and keys. You'll need to start farther back - to understand what you are doing.

If its in C Major, the reason it sounds as C Major is it's in C Major.

How do you turn a blue painting red when your only color is Blue? You can't, blue will only be blue. To turn it red, use red paint. The same with music.

Best,

Sean
#5
wowww wait a sec...... I thought if you play a song in Cmajor, you could play a minor mode of C over it... like C Dorian = B major or you could say B ionian... it only might sound strange indeed..... Am i completely wrong or kinda right???
#6
Quote by CrispyGuitar
I just read the thread about modes and I have some questions.

If I have a chord progression that is in C major, what mode do I use over it to make it sound minor?

I tried playing A minor over it, but it still sounded like C major.

If the chord progression is in C major, then there's nothing you can do. No matter what you play over it, it will sound like C major with accidentals. You can try C (pentatonic) minor over it for a bluesy sound but it will still be in C major
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#7
Quote by Headphonehead
wowww wait a sec...... I thought if you play a song in Cmajor, you could play a minor mode of C over it... like C Dorian = B major or you could say B ionian... it only might sound strange indeed..... Am i completely wrong or kinda right???


Completely wrong. I teach this stuff for a living. The problem is I dont know what foundational understanding that you will have to support the detailed reasoning behind why. So Im not being short with you, but If you play a C Major With the notes C D E F G A B C - as the underpinnings of all the chords in the progression, what do you do when you have Eb playing against E or Bb playing next to B? You have dissonance. That creates tension. Most people until they understand the concept of tension notes and resolution notes (usually connected to a well developed understanding of theory) are not able to handle the tension resolution in a deliberate way.

Now lets say you chose C Dorian over C Major you have a b3 with a major 3rd - go play E and Eb simultaneously and come back and tell me how they sounded together, go play open 1st string with the 4th fret 2nd string at the same time. Come back and tell me what you've learned.

It's not gonna sound Minor after all. The person who suggested removing the 3rd would be closer, but, again you are talking about overall something requiring a level of sophistication that is well beyond/outside the scope of any theory knowledge that you currently have to be able to do this successfully.

Best,

Sean
Last edited by Sean0913 at Aug 20, 2011,
#8
hey yeahh I see know... :P thnx for your help.... But then I could play a D dorian over it not??? since the notes of D dorian are D E F G A B C D not??
#9
Quote by Headphonehead
hey yeahh I see know... :P thnx for your help.... But then I could play a D dorian over it not??? since the notes of D dorian are D E F G A B C D not??

Notes of D Dorian are D E F G A B C, but so are notes of C major. If the key is C major, then you can't play D dorian. It will sound like C major.
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#10
Quote by Headphonehead
hey yeahh I see know... :P thnx for your help.... But then I could play a D dorian over it not??? since the notes of D dorian are D E F G A B C D not??

If the key is C major, playing D dorian would be the same as playing C major because the notes are the the same. its like saying the fractions 1/2 and 2/4 are different. they look different, but they are the same. D dorian looks different because it starts on D, but when it comes down to it, its still just C major.
#11
Quote by Headphonehead
hey yeahh I see know... :P thnx for your help.... But then I could play a D dorian over it not??? since the notes of D dorian are D E F G A B C D not??


You're welcome, its what I do every day and all day! Thanks for checking it out yourself - that's a good sign that eventually you may one day better learn to understand what you are doing, as well as what you are talking about - that can only help you!

Sure could, and it would be all with the same function of C Major scale, and will not sound or function as a Dorian scale at all - all the modes in that will be just one lonnnnnng C Major scale - the word Dorian is an organizational and conceptual one in this context and is not a musical or modal one.

As long as you understand that you can name it whatever you want - just know that its only one looooooong C Major scale - same with E Ph over C F Lyd over C etc.

Best,

Sean
#12
and srry but if you play the Progression B minor, F# major, G5 (you know the power chord..)
you would have the notes: D, B, F#, C#, A, G.... so you could just play a G ionian lick over it not??
#13
Quote by Headphonehead
and srry but if you play the Progression B minor, F# major, G5 (you know the power chord..)
you would have the notes: D, B, F#, C#, A, G.... so you could just play a G ionian lick over it not??

srry for posting... i know it's right.... :P
#15
Quote by Headphonehead
srry for posting... i know it's right.... :P


Are you sure about this? If you play this G Ionian lick, whats the function?

Whats the resolution?

Bm F# and G If the key is G you have a iii VII and I

(that's not even diatonic.)

Where are the C# and A# in a G Ionian/Major scale? - please let me know if you know something I don't.

Best,

Sean
#16
Quote by Headphonehead
and srry but if you play the Progression B minor, F# major, G5 (you know the power chord..)
you would have the notes: D, B, F#, C#, A, G.... so you could just play a G ionian lick over it not??


Figure out what chord your progression resolves to, that will tell you the Key.

If your Bm F# G progression resolves to Bm, then its in B Minor. G Ionian is not related or derived from Bm, although, G Lydian is. The C# note in the F# chord is the deciding factor there. But you still wouldn't be using G Lydian because G is functioning as the bVI of Bm, not the I of G Lydian.
#18
As others have said in various ways, your question really has nothing to do with modes. If you have a chord progression in C major, you're playing in C major. Modes just don't apply. Unfortunately this is something that has to be clarified ad nauseum here (and elsewhere).

I understand, for example, why one may draw a mental association with D dorian when one sees a Dm7 chord in a C major progression, but this is just harmonic movement in the context of the key of C major. You aren't actually "switching to modes" over each chord, just melodically outlining different areas of C major to fit the chords.
Last edited by Brainpolice2 at Aug 20, 2011,
#19
Quote by Brainpolice2
As others have said in various ways, your question really has nothing to do with modes. If you have a chord progression in C major, you're playing in C major. Modes just don't apply. Unfortunately this is something that has to be clarified ad nauseum here (and elsewhere).

I understand, for example, why one may draw a mental association with D dorian when one sees a Dm7 chord in a C major progression, but this is just harmonic movement in the context of the key of C major. You aren't actually "switching to modes" over each chord, just melodically outlining different areas of C major to fit the chords.


Havent seen you before here but welcome, and congrats for having your facts completely straight on the matter!

^^^^

This guy is on the ball here. Respect.

Welcome, and hope to see more of your posts here!

Best,

Sean
#20
Thanks, Sean.

I'm a big advocate of introducing people to modes conceptualized in parallel to the major or minor scale and in terms of their distinctive intervals, rather than relative to and derivative of major/minor. The problem is that when people initially see modes in terms of the fact that they can technically be conceptualized as built from different degrees of the major scale, they don't learn how modes are actually used in their own right; it's just "a different box" of the same notes to them. This is apparently a very common error, especially for guitar players.
Last edited by Brainpolice2 at Aug 20, 2011,
#21
Quote by Brainpolice2
Thanks, Sean.

I'm a big advocate of introducing people to modes conceptualized in parallel to the major or minor scale and in terms of their distinctive intervals, rather than relative to and derivative of major/minor. The problem is that when people initially see modes in terms of the fact that they can technically be conceptualized as built from different degrees of the major scale, they don't learn how modes are actually used in their own right; it's just "a different box" of the same notes to them. This is apparently a very common error, especially for guitar players.

This.
Many guitarists rely on other people on the internet rather than their own ears on the subject of modes.
For example, I've seen some people suggesting playing D Dorian over a C major progression. They think that it sounds different. If they open their ears and try to listen to what they're playing, it's actually C major.
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Last edited by hames jetfield at Aug 21, 2011,
#22
Quote by hames jetfield
This.
Many guitarists rely on other people on the internet rather than their own ears on the subject of modes.
For example, I've seen some people suggesting playing D Dorian over a C major progression. They think that it sounds different. If they open their ears and try to listen to what they're playing, it's actually C major.

https://www.ultimate-guitar.com/forum/showpost.php?p=27942000&postcount=2

Where do people learn this stuff?
#23
Quote by Jesse Clarkson


It's an extremely dumbed down version of CST, I went in depth elsewhere about the applications of modes to major/minor keys and how the approach could have been developed, but think CST, but with no variation in the note choice.
And no, Guitar Hero will not help. Even on expert. Really.
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#24
What bothers me the most about these uninformed posters is that they never elaborate on what they, themselves, mean by ''learn the modes'' - there's never any embellishment of the idea, and it's possibly the most blatantly lacking sort of post anybody can make on a board like this.
The very much the same applies for posts resembling ''learn x'' or ''practice'' without any intellectual input, but I suppose we all abhor those as much as one another.
#25
Intellectual input? This is the internet. <.< Thinking just isn't in vogue these days.

I can't be bothered elaborating until I see the TS is actually listening. Alex, hope you saw the crit on your piece.
#26
Quote by Brainpolice2
Thanks, Sean.

I'm a big advocate of introducing people to modes conceptualized in parallel to the major or minor scale and in terms of their distinctive intervals, rather than relative to and derivative of major/minor. The problem is that when people initially see modes in terms of the fact that they can technically be conceptualized as built from different degrees of the major scale, they don't learn how modes are actually used in their own right; it's just "a different box" of the same notes to them. This is apparently a very common error, especially for guitar players.


I actually teach both ways as they have specific benefits derived from understanding them. In terms of teaching construction, I go all the way to the Parallel side (#4, Nat 6, b2 etc) Very useful. Its one thing to learn how to construct a pitch collection, its another all together to know how to use it.

Best,

Sean