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#1
I know you guys were really looking forward to explaining modes again to another pathetic amateur. However, my question is pretty simple: Can you change modes in the middle of a song, and if you can, when? I'm sure that if you don't make it obvious it would sound like shit
#2
Yes, you can. You can do so anytime you want. All you have to do is change the harmony.

What do you know about keys, chord progressions and scales?
^^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
#3
Yes you can, however without a firm understanding of keys it's more likely that you were never in a mode to begin with.
And no, Guitar Hero will not help. Even on expert. Really.
Soundcloud
#5
So depending on the chord in the progression, you just change what mode your playing?
#6
Quote by Dix Stirbt
Not much lol.

Stay away from modes. Modes come from an older system of music that has since been replaced with our current tonal system. Unfortunately, based on some connections people have made between modes and the major scale, the names of modes have been co-opted to specify positions and orderings of the standard major scale, but all they are is a fretboard organizational tool. Too often, people think they are playing with modes when they are just playing with the major scale and end up screwing up their understanding of music theory.
It's sort of like wanting to get better at English by studying Old and Middle English instead of working on the English we already use. Only after you have an understanding of modern English can you study the older versions without having to worry about screwing up your skills in the modern version.

The music theory link in my sig is a good place to start.

EDIT: Hit the edit button when you want to add something to your post to avoid double-posting. To answer your question, no. One, modes have nothing to do with it. Two, if your progression is in the key of C major, your solo, no matter what notes you play, will be in the key of C major.
^^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
Last edited by rockingamer2 at Jan 1, 2013,
#7
Quote by Dix Stirbt
So depending on the chord in the progression, you just change what mode your playing?


No, without understanding harmonic context no matter what note you play it will most likely be in a key, not a mode.
And no, Guitar Hero will not help. Even on expert. Really.
Soundcloud
#8
So its just the chords you play over that makes it whatever mode it is, but its still the same scale? Thank god, that seems a lot simpler than switching complete scales..
#9
if you're looking for a quick easy way answer: yes

if you're serious about understanding music correctly: no, because there's no such thing as modes

...modes and scales are still useless.


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#10
Quote by Xiaoxi

if you're serious about understanding music correctly: no, because there's no such thing as modes


I was waiting for this post from Xiaoxi as soon as i saw the title
#11
You're starting to see it. Just stop using the word "mode."

Let's just focus on two aspects of music: harmony and melody. Melody is the the tune that catches your ear and is the singable or hummable part of the music. The harmony is the musical background to that melody, it's what gives it context. This is done with chords and those chords are the ones that dictate what key the song is in, not the melody.

Let's say you have the progression C Am F G. This chord progression is in the key of C major. If you play it, you'll notice that the G really wants to pull itself somewhere. Then play a C major chord and you'll get that release of tension your ears are begging for. C is where the progression resolves, or feels the at home. All the other chords in the key want to move somewhere else. Now the melody will be in that key as well, and we use the major scale as a starting place when choosing notes of the melody because it contains the "safe" notes that won't clash too hard (and the major pentatonic scale cuts out two of the seven, making it even "safer.")
^^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
Last edited by rockingamer2 at Jan 1, 2013,
#12
I'm sorry to ask all these questions, but I'm just curious. If modes are in your opinion "out-dated," then what should I use instead to give my sound a little more flavor? I don't want to settle with just major/minor scales because they can get boring and repetitive if that's all I use.
#13
Quote by Dix Stirbt
I'm sorry to ask all these questions, but I'm just curious. If modes are in your opinion "out-dated," then what should I use instead to give my sound a little more flavor? I don't want to settle with just major/minor scales because they can get boring and repetitive if that's all I use.

I can see the allure of modes, but really, our tonal system gives you plenty of options. This is because you can use notes outside the major and minor scale and still be in key. These notes are called "accidentals."

Too many people fall into this trap of getting bored and jumping on modes when they are not ready for them at all. Besides, you'll get bored of actual modes rather quickly because they are pretty restrictive. Sure it may sound cool or different, but each mode is stuck with that sound and it gets old quick. Why do you think we moved on hundreds of years ago?

Work on expanding your skills and knowledge with tonal theory before going back in time.
^^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
#14
Quote by Dix Stirbt
I'm sorry to ask all these questions, but I'm just curious. If modes are in your opinion "out-dated," then what should I use instead to give my sound a little more flavor? I don't want to settle with just major/minor scales because they can get boring and repetitive if that's all I use.


It's not the scale that's boring, it's how you use it. In keys there's 7 notes (arguably 8 if you include harmonic minor as a key) of 12 that are classified as "in key". Then we have 5 other notes that you can use whenever you want. That covers all the notes available on the guitar.

Do you need more? Perhaps you should look at some of your favourite guitar solos and figure out how they use major/minor scale and accidentals (if any).
And no, Guitar Hero will not help. Even on expert. Really.
Soundcloud
#15
Quote by Dix Stirbt
I'm sorry to ask all these questions, but I'm just curious. If modes are in your opinion "out-dated," then what should I use instead to give my sound a little more flavor? I don't want to settle with just major/minor scales because they can get boring and repetitive if that's all I use.

Scales/modes aren't boring in the same way that the letters of the alphabet aren't boring. They're inherently there, no matter what you do.

What's boring is that you use them to dictate what you should do musically.

...modes and scales are still useless.


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Hey guys could you spare a minute to Vote for my band. Go to the site Search our band Listana with CTRL+F for quick and vote Thank you .
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Voted for Patron Çıldırdı.

Thanks
Quote by PhoenixGRM
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#16
Gotcha. I'll just run along now and learn some more music theory lol. Thanks for clearing things up
#17
Yes you can modulate between modes in the same song.

One elegant example of this is Norwegian Wood (This Bird Has Flown) by the Beatles.

Note the direct modulation from the mixolydian mode to the dorian mode. (about 0:32 and again at 1:21) And it modulates back to the mixolydian mode for the start of the following verses.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PxxGVjLNpek
Si
#18
Quote by Dix Stirbt
I know you guys were really looking forward to explaining modes again to another pathetic amateur. However, my question is pretty simple: Can you change modes in the middle of a song, and if you can, when? I'm sure that if you don't make it obvious it would sound like shit

Yeah you can switch to what ever you want mate.

You got Mixolydian and Phrygian Dominant modes and keys everywhere. lol

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sErcGctrwyc
#19
the words "mode" and "progression" should never be used within the same context
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#21
Quote by Dix Stirbt
I'm sorry to ask all these questions, but I'm just curious. If modes are in your opinion "out-dated," then what should I use instead to give my sound a little more flavor? I don't want to settle with just major/minor scales because they can get boring and repetitive if that's all I use.
Accidentals. Rhythm. Phrasing. Silence, maybe?

If major/minor scales are getting boring, you really just don't have enough experience with them. You have plenty of note choice options just taking the major scale and adding accidentals as you please.
Only play what you hear. If you don’t hear anything, don’t play anything.
-Chick Corea
#22
Quote by food1010
Accidentals. Rhythm. Phrasing. Silence, maybe?

If major/minor scales are getting boring, you really just don't have enough experience with them. You have plenty of note choice options just taking the major scale and adding accidentals as you please.


By doing that, you pretty much have all the notes as an option
#23
Quote by macashmack
By doing that, you pretty much have all the notes as an option
Precisely.
Only play what you hear. If you don’t hear anything, don’t play anything.
-Chick Corea
#24
listen, pathetic amateur, i'm really looking forward to explaining modes to you

and my explanation is this

don't

just don't

i can't even believe

where's the pillsbury doughboy award
Anfangen ist leicht, Beharren eine Kunst.
#25
The closest thing to modality normally found in modern music is the "flamenco mode" also associated or called, "Andalusion Cadence".

A classic example is Bob Dylan's "One more Cup of Coffee". The basic chord Progression is Am, G, F, E, and the scale is a "Phrygian major". You can try to argue this song into the key of Am all night, but in the end, you'll realize the the E major is functioning as the "I" or tonic, and hence is the true resolution.

With that said, true early modal music contains "tetrachords", while the "Andalusian Candence" is a fully chord harmonized scale. So, it can't be truly modal either.

"Modes" start the best, most long winded arguments here at UG, and while it's a cool for a while, modes are sometimes either alluded to, generated in a faux manner, or only appear as "snippets" in modern music, when the reality is, you're still dealing with keyed music.

The Beatles "Norwegian Wood" is the perfect example of an almost purely modal piece due to the drones that exist in the verse, and the technical absence of anything that could be considered a true chord change. The minor or "Dorian" part is a little more ambiguous, as there is a more changing chord progression in that section.
(Dm, Em, Dm, G, A) A is the V chord of D major, so that does offer a direct major key type resolution to the Mixolydian (verse) section.

( A major is also the "V" chord as used in the Dm harmonic minor scale. Just thought I'd toss that in there for yuks).

Van Morrison and the Jefferson Airplane loosely worked some tentatively modal devices into their songs. Morrison's "Moondance, and the Airplane's "White Rabbit" and "Martha", come to mind. That only extends or aggravates to argument, as one has to wonder, "does getting very stoned and allowing some pedal notes to drone, really constitute a dlligent attempt to resurrect the archaic modal discipline....

Perhaps these 2 Wiki pages will give you food for thought: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Andalusian_cadence And http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flamenco_mode
Last edited by Captaincranky at Jan 2, 2013,
#26
It's actually pretty easy to argue that the chord progression Am G F E is in a key. The E major is derived from the harmonic minor, it features the strongest cadence possible. Key is A minor.
And no, Guitar Hero will not help. Even on expert. Really.
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#27
Quote by AlanHB
It's actually pretty easy to argue that the chord progression Am G F E is in a key. The E major is derived from the harmonic minor, it features the strongest cadence possible. Key is A minor.


Quote by Captaincranky
The closest thing to modality normally found in modern music is the "flamenco mode" also associated or called, "Andalusion Cadence".


As you can plainly see, I said it was close to modal, not truly modal. If it was actually Phrygian, the tonic would be Em.

Yes, there are V7 chord resolutions and they are very powerful. But, the ones I'm thinking of, sound more,"out of key" than, "in key".

B7 in the open position, (when we're talking about the key of Em), is one of those resolutions. But here, that particular chord voicing almost falls into the category of "idiomatic expression for guitar. It gets pounded away on in "The House of the Rising Sun", and "Diamonds and Rust".

In the Andalusian Cadence, none of the chords ever truly function as they would in Am. The outro to "Stairway to Heaven", while it uses the same chord progression, clearly resolves to Am. (of course without the E major).

So, I believe the links I gave you mention that for every "Andalusion mode", there is a minor key equivalent.

And since we're on the topic of dispelling myths, I think what everybody is calling "Dorian" in "Norwegian Wood", is pretty much D harmonic minor as well. (The A major chord is that self same "V" chord, in either D major or D minor).

Happy now? You have me on board with the whole, "every modern song is in a key dogma"?.

Except when such and such an "expert" says it isn't. Unfortunately, those opinions vary from day to day, and expert to expert, and even my non-expert self...
Last edited by Captaincranky at Jan 2, 2013,
#28
The 'Andalusian mode' (lol) is a set of chords descending a tetrachord. It's not in a mode, it's in a key.
#29
Quote by griffRG7321
The 'Andalusian mode' (lol) is a set of chords descending a tetrachord. It's not in a mode, it's in a key.
And I agree. And I also never said it was purely modal. So why are you driving this point home? Wait, I know the answer, you're trying to make me shout, "Uncle A minor"...


But, the descending "tetrachord", gives the "impression of modality", and you never have the reassurance of a true resolution to the equivalent minor key tonic.

In the case of "One More Cup of Coffee", there's also a bunch of noodling around from F major to E major, a time tested Flamenco device. Which I'm guessing you're going to call, "VI > V", and I of course, am still stinking to my "I> II" story.

Spanish music tends to sound a bit eccentric at times. They even put reed banks on their pipe organs. Go figure.
Last edited by Captaincranky at Jan 2, 2013,
#30
Quote by AlanHB
It's actually pretty easy to argue that the chord progression Am G F E is in a key. The E major is derived from the harmonic minor, it features the strongest cadence possible. Key is A minor.
Yeah i bVII VI V is one of the most common minor progressions. It would be pretty difficult to resolve that anywhere else.

Hear how the E resolves up to the Am every time in the verse? I guess the point you were trying to make has to do more with the chorus, but considering the whole verse is undeniably tonal, it's hard to call the chorus modal. Sure, F to E is a very common example of Phrygian Dominant, but the context of the song doesn't let it settle into the Phrygian Dominant modality. The function of the chorus is mostly just to build tension around that unresolved V, and then release it when Dylan says "to the valley below." The chorus is much shorter than the verse and the instrumental breaks all use the verse progression. The tonal resolution is MUCH more firmly established. Hell, the song even ends on Am.

Sure it has a lot of flamenco tendencies, but that doesn't mean it's in phrygian dominant.
Only play what you hear. If you don’t hear anything, don’t play anything.
-Chick Corea
Last edited by food1010 at Jan 2, 2013,
#31
Quote by Captaincranky

And since we're on the topic of dispelling myths, I think what everybody is calling "Dorian" in "Norwegian Wood", is pretty much D harmonic minor as well. (The A major chord is that self same "V" chord, in either D major or D minor).

I was wondering if anyone was going to pull that up.

It's still Dorian as far as i'm concerned. The presence of the C# is a tool to modulate back to the D Major for setting up the Mixolydian verses and not really effective in changing the dorian quality of the chorus. And it doesn't really change the fact that the verse is mixolydian.

Also on a side note I don't play it the same as you but either way works.
You noted the chorus as i ii i IV V. I play it as i IV i IV V.
I have also seen it notated as i IV i iim7 V (Dm G Dm Em7 A) Though it was transcribed up a whole step as being in E as opposed to D.

What it does show is that modal ideas are not mutually exclusive from tonal ideas and the two can coexist peacefully.
Si
#32
Quote by 20Tigers
Also on a side note I don't play it the same as you but either way works.You noted the chorus as i ii i IV V. I play it as i IV i IV V.
I have also seen it notated as i IV i iim7 V (Dm G Dm Em7 A) Though it was transcribed up a whole step as being in E as opposed to D.
No, actually we play it identically. I tend to go off half cocked writing out musical notations. mdc, AeolianWolf, or Alan usually give me a big "WTF?", and that helps me to collect my thoughts, and correct the error of my ways.

So yeah, Dm, G, Dm, Em, A . (I do skip the Em7 & play Em, you don't expect me to learn more than 6 chords, do you)?

A teacher with an extraordinary ear showed me the song when I first came, transcribed the vocal harmonies and all.

A D open chord shape is pretty much the only way you can play the melody in the verses to the song, while maintaining the drone, so I'm going to go not very far out an a very sturdy limb, and suggest that the sitar was tuned to E major, and/or somebody sneaked a capo into the studio. Hence the song being notated in E. It most likely was in "E", (or rather B mixo ).

Two songs I like to reference as a comparison between a modal "feel" and a minor key are "One More Cup of Coffee" and "Paint it Black". While there's a lot of minor 2nd >intervals< happening in Paint it Black, they're based on the harmonic minor natural 7th, not the Phrygian 2nd. Dm, A7, Dm, A7 in the verses, and the chorus ends with the V7 > i. You really can't confuse that with the Andalusian Cadence's (effective) II, I. Yet, as I always like to mention, my father always used to scream at me, "turn that shit off, it sounds like a Jewish chant". They of course, use the "Freggish" scale. It's that darn minor 2nd. No matter where you put it, if you hammer on it long enough, you can't help but get an exotic feel.

Again with this song, as with Norwegian Wood written in E, I always see it notated as being in F minor. And out comes the trusty capo. So, play the melody on the top 2 strings, cross pick the bass notes, and sing it an octave down. Works for me.
Quote by 20Tigers
What it does show is that modal ideas are not mutually exclusive from tonal ideas and the two can coexist peacefully.
Amen to that.
Last edited by Captaincranky at Jan 3, 2013,
#33
^^^ Yeah modes are tonal, perhaps there's some confusion with terms occurring here.

Otherwise all I see are examples of songs in keys that feature non-diatonic chords in their progressions :shrugs:
And no, Guitar Hero will not help. Even on expert. Really.
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#34
Quote by AlanHB
^^^ Yeah modes are tonal, perhaps there's some confusion with terms occurring here.

Otherwise all I see are examples of songs in keys that feature non-diatonic chords in their progressions :shrugs:
You mean chords that are, "not modal interchanges", but rather, "chords borrowed from parallel keys".

It does beg the question, "then which keys aren't parallel".?


"Po-tay-toe, po-tah-toe, tow- may-toe, tow-mah- toe ".

(People have told me you couldn't translate that joke to the printed page, I say, "I just did").

Sorry, I just had to get that out of my system.

Still in all, I think you missed the most worthwhile and conciliatory part of this discussion, which was actually the existence of diatonic chords in modal music.
Last edited by Captaincranky at Jan 3, 2013,
#35
^^^ I personally think "modal interchange" is a silly term as it has nothing to do with modes. Otherwise I always thought that modal chord progressions (if you could call them that) would have to exclusively feature diatonic chords as a non-diatonic chord would enforce the existence of accidentals, drawing the harmonic context into key.
And no, Guitar Hero will not help. Even on expert. Really.
Soundcloud
#36
you can have a piece that goes from a modal perspective (as in conventionally and functionally modal) to a key system, but i don't think it would be possible to eliminate such a strong pull to the tonic to return to it being legitimately modal, even if you repeated the exact same (and previously functional) section juxtaposed after rather than before a point of cadence where a tonic is solidified.

but when you're pulling in "it's in harmonic minor" or whatever, we go back to confusing keys and scales by putting them in the same category. a song can have all 7 notes within the confines of a scale, including a modal scale, but it will almost always fall into a major or minor key due to our innate understanding of tonal music and almost inherent sense of cadence that will prevent us from doing anything off the wall without either trying to or without immersing ourselves very far from the realm of conventional music long enough to adapt a new sense of fundamentals. one of those will sound very forced, and the other requires a lot of time and patience that shouldn't be a factor for people who don't yet have the basics of modern tonality down to absolute mastery.

Quote by AlanHB
^^^ I personally think "modal interchange" is a silly term as it has nothing to do with modes. Otherwise I always thought that modal chord progressions (if you could call them that) would have to exclusively feature diatonic chords as a non-diatonic chord would enforce the existence of accidentals, drawing the harmonic context into key.


it actually does, but in the sense that the only "modes" are the major and minor keys. you're changing from a major to minor mode, or vice versa, or to another mode of similar quality with a different tonic. it's very easy to confuse this with the church modes (both the scales as well as the conventions implied by that) so we end up with 3 different kinds of modes depending on context and they're all damn near useless.
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Last edited by Hail at Jan 3, 2013,
#37
How could I have better phrased that to get my point across?

My point was, substitution of a harmony that would merge modal music into keyed music.

The Norwegian Wood example is a good one. Most agree that the verse is mixolydian, yet it is re-entered from the chorus with an A major that is functioning as a V chord in both D minor and D major. The existence of the one, "out of mode chord", doesn't really force the song into a key.

I'm baffled why this forum is so close minded as to see that there is an "inheritance factor" from modes in modern keyed music. Once upon a time we "spake", now in the past tense, "we spoke". You should be able to see the derivation and influence in the modern form, without denying the existence of the past.

And I agree, most of these threads start out dumb, as did this one. "I'm tired of keys, so I want to learn modes", doesn't put anybody in the mood for a rational or measured response.
#38
Quote by Hail
but when you're pulling in "it's in harmonic minor" or whatever, we go back to confusing keys and scales by putting them in the same category. a song can have all 7 notes within the confines of a scale, including a modal scale, but it will almost
That happened right here:

Quote by food1010
Sure it has a lot of flamenco tendencies, but that doesn't mean it's in phrygian dominant.


I just let it slide. I know full well that "Phrygian dominant" is not a mode, but rather a scale. would anybody extend me the courtesy of overlooking that statement if I were the one that made it? Frankly, I doubt it very much.

But by saying something is, "in harmonic minor", you also tacitly acknowledge the harmonies that accompany the scale. If I said "natural minor", you'd automatically adjust the harmony to a b7, would you not? When I say, "harmonic minor" you think of the natural 7th.

None of this matters. We play in keys while dabbling in modes on rare occasions. The rest of what goes on in these threads is largely semantic fencing, and the imposition of opinion. Law of the jungle really.
Last edited by Captaincranky at Jan 3, 2013,
#39
wow you act like i was picking on you, i usually don't even read your dumb posts, i just saw somebody post "in harmonic minor" and used that as an example
Quote by theogonia777
Hail killed MT

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I want to be Hail when I grow up.
#40
Quote by Hail
wow you act like i was picking on you, i usually don't even read your dumb posts, i just saw somebody post "in harmonic minor" and used that as an example

No, actually I'm not. Hadn't even considered it. In fact, that's how I took its meaning as well.

In reality we've managed to reach a tentative accord. You ignore my "dumb posts", which I no longer trouble myself with taking offense at it.

While I, "on the other hand", (that was the setup line), no longer try to hear the zen in the sound of your one hand fapping.
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