#1
I've just been going over some better understanding of cadences and had some questions if anyone could possibly help. I know so far the tonic, pre-subdominant, subdominant, and dominant play a role in tonal music where the tension builds up to the dominant and releases tension back to 'home'. I look at these funcions as sort of a journey from home to wherever you want to go, with the dominant being the place that makes you home sick the most. But we don't always want to go to those places..maybe we just want to go to Bill's house for a few beers or something (hopefully that made sense).

Anyway I was hoping I could maybe get some help on how borrowed chords fit into these 'functions'. (bIII, bVII, bVI in major key). bonus question..Do bII, bIV and bV chords ever get used, and how would they function as well. Thank you!
#3
All of the "b-something" chords are USUALLY sub-dominant.

You don't really see a bIV because we usually borrow from minor modes in a mjor key, so a bIV would just be III. You see bIII's all the time though.

A bV chord is also somewhat rare, but a #IVm7b5 is very common.

And no, tritone subs don't count as bV's.
"There are two styles of music. Good music and bad music." -Duke Ellington

"If you really think about it, the guitar is a pointless instrument." - Robert Fripp
#4
A #IVm7 is used in the chorus of Sir Duke.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6sIjSNTS7Fs

bII is pretty common (especially in minor keys). The second chord of this song is a bII.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=okLDkcexiVg
Quote by AlanHB
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#5
If you have a diatonic progression, by nature of the fact that a "foreign" chord has cropped up, it's going to stand out, and so would usually be followed by a diatonic chord. But this depends so much on what music genre you're using. In major key, a reliable approach is to follow the foreign chord by the closest I, IV or V of major (these prop up the tonal centre).
#6
Well that's not necessarily true. ^

bVI bVII I - the bVI is not followed by the closest I IV V or even a diatonic chord.

I ? IV V chord progression can have anything in that ?. A bVI works and doesn't go to the V which would be the closest diatonic chord.

Similarly you could have a progression like I bIII bII bVI IV V I (in C -> C Eb Db Ab F G C). It works perfectly well but doesn't rely on any of the borrowed chords moving to the closest diatonic chord or even the diatonic chord.

There are principles that can help someone understand how chord changes (understanding root movement and voice leading for example) but those kinds of general rules you stated there are one of the things I have a personal distaste for. The reason I can't stand them is that they are NOT really all that reliable and are somewhat restrictive.

They work when they work and they don't when they don't, which in my book makes them pretty useless.
Si
#7
There are three types of N chords. There are special voice leading rules for each one, but if you dont read music, thats largely useless to you.

Whats important is that they essentially boil down to Dominant chords. While typically used as bII or bVI of a key, you can use them as predominants for more or less any chord.

Italian: No 5th, double the third
French: 7#11, no 5th (cliche french sound)
German: fully voiced dominant chord. Das ist fertig

In jazz, all 3 are colloquially known as a tri-tone substitution

N6 or tritone sub can be used over any circle of 5ths progression. For instance, Dm G7 C. To create a tritone sub, the bass player should play Db over the G chord (creating a descending chromatic scale). Youll notice that when you add a Db to G major, you can revoice the chord to spell Db7#11 (Db, F, Cb(B) G. You may choose to keep the b9, but in jazz, you often leave 5ths out as it is.

Jet, tri-tone subs are in fact N6 function. The only reason one would differentiate is because TT subs dont follow the strict classical rules of N6. The other reasons, is that jazz players dont use the term N6. They will refer to anything that acts like N6 as a TT sub

OP, before I go on, have you seen this?

Last edited by bassalloverthe at Oct 19, 2014,
#8
Yeah Bass, I hear you.

My "thing" is that the augmented sixth chords (Ger, It, Fr) are not seen as vertical structures. It's all about voice leading. Most classical theorists will tell you that the +6 chords don't even have roots!

So when talking about playing "chords" and not doing counterpoint its more beneficial to just use the names of the chords (C7#11) instead of the voice leading structure (Ger+6)

I would disagree about the tritone sub being a N6 though. It would probably more more accurate (if you wanted to mix terminology in the first place) to call a tritone sub an augmented sixth chord off of b2.
"There are two styles of music. Good music and bad music." -Duke Ellington

"If you really think about it, the guitar is a pointless instrument." - Robert Fripp
Last edited by Jet Penguin at Oct 19, 2014,
#9
Quote by 20Tigers
Well that's not necessarily true. ^

bVI bVII I - the bVI is not followed by the closest I IV V or even a diatonic chord.

I ? IV V chord progression can have anything in that ?. A bVI works and doesn't go to the V which would be the closest diatonic chord.

Similarly you could have a progression like I bIII bII bVI IV V I (in C -> C Eb Db Ab F G C). It works perfectly well but doesn't rely on any of the borrowed chords moving to the closest diatonic chord or even the diatonic chord.

There are principles that can help someone understand how chord changes (understanding root movement and voice leading for example) but those kinds of general rules you stated there are one of the things I have a personal distaste for. The reason I can't stand them is that they are NOT really all that reliable and are somewhat restrictive.

They work when they work and they don't when they don't, which in my book makes them pretty useless.


How is bVI bVII I even remotely diatonic (I was talking about a major key progression)?

You seriously think I bIII bII bVI IV V I (in C -> C Eb Db Ab F G C). sounds like its in C major? It's taking a big steer away with the bIII bII bVI. It's only the IV V I that saves it.

If you've got someone that's new to harmony, it helps to give guidance, not freedom, initially. I did offer a few caveats on its use. Offering an obviously unmusical, artificial chord sequence as an example of borrowing chords into a key (without destroying the sense of key) is pretty useless also!
#11
Well of course a bVI bVII I is not diatonic. Show me an example that uses borrowed chords and IS diatonic

There's nothing unmusical about the example progression I provided. But what you're saying there sounds like a predominant so I'll wait for it...

Oh another borrowed chord that doesn't resolve to the nearest I IV or V chord. IV iv I. The iv is borrowed from the parallel minor and the nearest diatonic I IV or V chord would be IV. This one resolves to I. Go figure.

A bVII IV I cycle of fourths type cadence works as well. The bVII being a IV of IV also doesn't resolve to the nearest diatonic I IV or V (which would be the I chord).

When going from I to V via a bVII and some kind of VI (a diatonic vi or a borrowed bVI). The bVII doesn't move to the nearest diatonic I IV or V chord. Instead you could consider it a viidim with a lowered root note. The leading tone not being needed when heading away from the tonic.

A borrowed bVI also often goes to a IV chord in a lot of rock music (i.e. not to the nearest diatonic I IV or V chord).

There are many examples that contravene your "reliable guideline".

While it is "reliable" in as much as it will work it will quite often not be the direction he wants to go - even as a novice in non diatonic harmony.

Guidance is only good if it consistently points you in the right direction. That guideline doesn't.
Si
#13
Modes.
Quote by AlanHB
It's the same as all other harmony. Surround yourself with skulls and candles if it helps.
#14
Quote by 91RG350
Modes.


Please tell me you got a warning for each thread you made this joke in