#1
Hello guys.
I'm trying to make some simple arrangements of my songs (just guitar + vocals) and I'm somewhat confused.

Let say I play a "let ring" chord arpeggio over my vocal melody.How should I analyze vertical harmony?Should I analyze the vocal melody note in regard to the guitar chord as a whole,or only in regard to the guitar chord note stack below my melody note?What I mean is,does it matter what exact note of the arpeggiated chord is below each melody notes?

I hope you understand what I mean.Thanks a lot in advance
#2
Generally arpeggios, regardless of whether they ring or not, should be treated the same as the whole chord in terms of vertical harmony. It's like... you're still playing the vocal melody over that chord, regardless as to whether the whole chord is represented at a given moment. Although... if you are letting the notes ring long enough, the whole chord probably is represented harmonically (all the tones of that chord are sounding together) at a given moment.
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Last edited by theogonia777 at Jan 7, 2015,
#4
Thank you very much for your replies.
Main problem is those non chord tones in vocal melody.Playing chord notes in different order gives me different results.
Let's say I play an Am over my melody.Let's also say that the current measure contains the non chord tone B.If B clashes with the E note of the Am chord,I get a pleasing result.However,if it clashes with the C of the Am chord,I get a terrible minor second dissonant sound.
Thing is,I think that every arrangement should have one or two distinctive patterns.I don't want to change my arpeggios to fit every different situation during the song.
Are there any rules/tips for those kind of situations?

Thanks again.
Last edited by lawman13 at Jan 7, 2015,
#5
A "b" note over an Am just makes an Am9. Not displeasing at all. However if you think it is too dissonant either don't use the b or resolve it to a c or a note.

This is why I say do not over analyze. Writing the melody to only include chord tones is terribly boring.

edit: Am add 9, my bad
Last edited by ouchies at Jan 7, 2015,
#6
When you use different instruments, dissonances don't sound that dissonant because you will kind of hear them as separate melodic lines. Different octaves also matter (for example if the B is played an octave higher than the C note, it doesn't sound that dissonant). Just listen to the Amadd9 chord - it doesn't sound dissonant, even though it has C and B in it.

But if it really sounds bad, just change it. Sometimes you have to do that. But yeah, don't over analyze it.
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#7
Thank you very much guys.
Actually taking into regard the timbres of different instruments and octaves makes great sense,.
So, what I'm gonna try is play with different chord inversions so that problematic melody notes and chord notes don't fall on the same octave.
#8
Don't over analyze it. The advice here is good, but I would add it only makes it an Amadd9 if you are actually treating the B as a chord tone, and not as a passing note.
"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
#9
Quote by Jet Penguin
Don't over analyze it. The advice here is good, but I would add it only makes it an Amadd9 if you are actually treating the B as a chord tone, and not as a passing note.


Hey Jet Penguin.
In my case that B is a passing tone that collapses with the underlying harmony.Does that make any difference?
#10
If the B is not being treated as a chord tone, then you would analyze the harmony is just an Am chord.

However, all this does not have to be done by the same instrument. If the guitar isn't treating the B as a chord tone but another instrument is, its Am9.

Feel free to post a brief example and I can confirm or deny it haha.
"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
#11
Quote by Jet Penguin
If the B is not being treated as a chord tone, then you would analyze the harmony is just an Am chord.

However, all this does not have to be done by the same instrument. If the guitar isn't treating the B as a chord tone but another instrument is, its Am9.

Feel free to post a brief example and I can confirm or deny it haha.


Here it is,a very short example.Those Bs clashing with the Cs sound terrible.

#12
It may sound terrible when you play the midi file. But it sounds way different when played in real life. As I said, if you play the melody and the chords with different instruments, it won't sound that dissonant. Voice will not clash with the guitar that easily. So try playing and singing it. That's the only way to hear if it actually sounds bad. A midi file can't really tell it. Something that sounds pretty good in real life can sound pretty dissonant when you play it with midi sounds. That's just how it is.

You could change the chord to Asus2. You could also play the melody an octave higher. Or you could leave it the way it is and try it with real instruments.

You could also pan the melody and the chords to different sides.

I tried the melody and chords together on tux guitar and when they were both panned to the center and both played with the same instrument (acoustic guitar), it sounded bad. But when I panned the chords to the left and the melody to the right, it sounded a lot better. Then I changed the melody sound to "choir" and it sounded even better - it didn't sound like it clashed with the guitar part at all.
Quote by AlanHB
Just remember that there are no boring scales, just boring players.

Gear

Bach Stradivarius 37G
Charvel So Cal
Fender Dimension Bass
Hartke HyDrive 210c
Ibanez BL70
Laney VC30
Tokai TB48
Yamaha FG720S-12
Yamaha P115
Last edited by MaggaraMarine at Jan 8, 2015,
#13
Thank you very much for taking the time to make those tests.I also tried it with different instruments and still sounded bad,although I guess nothing comes close to real instruments.

Thank you very much again
#14
^ Did you try panning?

But yeah, if it really bothers you, you can always change the picking pattern. But seriously I would first try it with guitar and voice. If it still doesn't sound good, change the guitar part a bit. For example replace the C note with an E or a B (which would make the chord Asus2).
Quote by AlanHB
Just remember that there are no boring scales, just boring players.

Gear

Bach Stradivarius 37G
Charvel So Cal
Fender Dimension Bass
Hartke HyDrive 210c
Ibanez BL70
Laney VC30
Tokai TB48
Yamaha FG720S-12
Yamaha P115
#15
Yeah that's just straight Am. The B is a passing tone.

Don't let the MIDI file fool you either, it'll sound totally different sung and played.
"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