#1
Hello UG, I've been trying to write music on guitar. I think it would be cool if you could change keys/scales during a song, but whenever I try to change keys during a song, it doesnt sound very "pleasing". Like, the transition from key to key sounds really unfitting. Is there any way to transition keys during a song and make it sound good? Is there any way to get a smooth transition between keys?
#2
There are a lot of techniques...a few common ones:

Common Chord Modulation
Chromatic Alteration
Common tone Modulation
Sequential Modulation
Enharmonic modulation
Parallel Modulation

This wiki article is actually a pretty good explanation, and will save me a lot of typing, let me know if you need a clearer explanation of any of the above.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Modulation_(music)#Parallel_key_modulation
#4
The easiest way to modulate is this:

Go to the V7 chord of the key you want to be in, then go to the 1 of they new key.

So, for example, let's say you are in C and want to go to G. Rather than play a Dm, you would play a D7 ... then you would play a G and bam, you're in G major.

You can heighten this feeling by going Dm - D7 - G.
This trick also works to go into minor keys: you could go from D7 to Gm.

There are other ways, but this is probably the easiest. It's also easiest to move between keys which are close to each other on the circle of fifths. That is to say, from C it's easy to go to G or F, not too difficult to go to D or Bb, starts to get tricky if you want to go to A or Eb, etc.

When making large jumps in keys, composers often go into an intermediate key. eg, rather than go from C to Gb, you might go to D, and from D to Gb.

There are lots of other ways to modulate, but using the V7 technique is probably the easiest way.
#5
^^^ I'm all for the wham bam dom7 method as described above.
And no, Guitar Hero will not help. Even on expert. Really.
Soundcloud
#7
Quote by SomeRandomCrack
Is there a way I can change keys using just powerchords?


All of the above mentioned work with power chords. Power chords are simply voicing the root and fifth of a larger chord.
And no, Guitar Hero will not help. Even on expert. Really.
Soundcloud
#8
So, just so I understand. If I wanted to go from C to A, and the powerchord progression Im using goes C-G#-D#. What do I do?
#9
Quote by SomeRandomCrack
So, just so I understand. If I wanted to go from C to A, and the powerchord progression Im using goes C-G#-D#. What do I do?


do you want me to write the song for you? or do you want to write it?

if you want me to write it for you, then first off, you're not in C, you're in C minor. and it's not G# or D#, it's Ab and Eb. what you can do is use a G7 chord and tonicize C major, then use an E7 chord tonicize Am (or A, can't tell which you mean since you don't specify the quality of the key). so the implied harmony would be Cm - Abmaj - Ebmaj - Cm - G7 - Cmaj - E7 - Am. and that's just some bare bones stuff -- throw in more chords between the modulation to C major and the modulation to A minor to really make it set in, because those modulations occur very quickly. play over it, and tell your friends some guy online wrote it for you.

or, alternatively, you could start studying theory and training your ear, which will allow you to do what i just did for you yourself.

the choice is yours.
Anfangen ist leicht, Beharren eine Kunst.
#10
Quote by SomeRandomCrack
So, just so I understand. If I wanted to go from C to A, and the powerchord progression Im using goes C-G#-D#. What do I do?

If you want to change keys using power chords, then think about how the root is moving.
--------
--------
------8-
-10-6-8-6-7
-10-6-6-7-7
-8--4---4-5

The second to last chord isn't strictly a power chord, but it fits stylistically.

C5 - Ab5 - Eb5 - E/G# - A5
Last edited by mdc at Feb 21, 2012,
#11
Oh no Im just stating an example so I understand it better. I dont want anyone to write anything for me. Thanks for the help everyone, I think I understand it now.