#1
Hey guys. So my band wrote a psychedelic song with the following progression: B - Bm/G - D - C

Problem we are having is our vocalist wrote a melody that seems to clash a bit with the interchange between B and Bm. D (note) features strongly in his melody, but when we shift to B major chord (which has a D#), things sound....shaky of course.

So firstly; Is it "correct" to use B and Bm in the same progression? Secondly, what could be a possible work around this? I see Dan Auerbach used Am and A together in the last part of Little Black Submarines, and his vocal melody worked there somehow?

Any help would be appreciated.

Thanks.
#2
Yes, it's fine and a common thing to do, but your Bm/G is actually a Gmaj7 chord:

G B D F#

B minor is B D F#

Try playing C (I) - F (IV) - Fm (iv) - C (I). That's the most common use of the major - minor chord thing.
#3
Are you sure it's a B chord you're hearing and not a G inversion?
Quote by EndTheRapture51
Anyway I have technically statutory raped #nice

Quote by EndThecRinge51
once a girl and i promised to never leave each other

since that promise was broken

i dont make promises any more
#4
Some popular songs are built on modal mixture, like "Summer Breeze". *nostalgia*
#6
Quote by proXy124c41
Hey guys. So my band wrote a psychedelic song with the following progression: B - Bm/G - D - C

Problem we are having is our vocalist wrote a melody that seems to clash a bit with the interchange between B and Bm. D (note) features strongly in his melody, but when we shift to B major chord (which has a D#), things sound....shaky of course.

So firstly; Is it "correct" to use B and Bm in the same progression? Secondly, what could be a possible work around this? I see Dan Auerbach used Am and A together in the last part of Little Black Submarines, and his vocal melody worked there somehow?

Any help would be appreciated.

Thanks.


The vocal simply needs to play a note that is common to both chords, or to to play the major third or 7th over the B maj. The one thing that "can't" happen is playing a note that clashes with Bmaj.
#7
If it sounds bad, change it. But don't change it just because it's a D and the chord has a D# in it - if it sounds just fine, it doesn't matter if it looks "wrong" on paper. It's a pretty common thing to play a minor third over a major chord. That's what you do all the time when you play the blues scale over a blues progression.

Minor third over a major chord can sound good. It can give that kind of a bluesy sound to the melody. For example a lot of AC/DC songs are in a major key but the vocal melody mostly uses the minor pentatonic scale.

You could just change the D in the melody to a D# when your singer is singing over the B major chord. Or you could use another note - B, F#, whatever. Just change the melody a bit if that's the only part that doesn't sound good. But to me it feels like you just want to be "theoretically correct". Don't try to make your songs fit some kind of rules. There are no rules. If it sounds good, it is good. How can something that sounds good be forbidden? I just don't see a point in that. Music is art, art is about expression. You can express yourself any way you want. You could just play pure noise and it still wouldn't be forbidden. You are free to do anything you want with your instrument.


So... My question is, do you think the melody sounds good if you just listen to it and forget about the fact that it has a D over a B major chord? If yes, it is good, don't change anything. If not, change the melody.
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
#8
Quote by proXy124c41
Hey guys. So my band wrote a psychedelic song with the following progression: B - Bm/G - D - C

Problem we are having is our vocalist wrote a melody that seems to clash a bit with the interchange between B and Bm. D (note) features strongly in his melody, but when we shift to B major chord (which has a D#), things sound....shaky of course.

So firstly; Is it "correct" to use B and Bm in the same progression? Secondly, what could be a possible work around this? I see Dan Auerbach used Am and A together in the last part of Little Black Submarines, and his vocal melody worked there somehow?

Any help would be appreciated.

Thanks.
I agree exactly with MaggaraMarine. The choice comes down to what sounds good, that's the bottom line.

The question here is which is more important to the song: the singer's D, or your D# in the chord?
The whole point of using B major - surely - is to have that "odd" D# note in an otherwise G major context (D naturals on Gmaj7 and D), giving the sequence that (mildly) "psychedelic" effect, using a chord that sounds "out" for no apparent reason (although it sounds good for other reasons, see below).

But if your singer is sure about his D, then it seems like he has a quite different idea about the feel of the song. To go with your chords, he should really be making the most of that D#. It would sound best if the D# was part of his melody, because then there would be a logical reason to use the B major chord! (Other than just wanting something to sound a bit "out".) Otherwise he should go for other chord tones there, F# or B.

D natural over B major does have a "blues" sound, as MM says, but only where the major chord is basic to the key, which it isn't here. Him singing D natural might just make your B major sound wrong, instead of his vocal sounding like blues.

It suggests to me that your singer is not quite on board with that "psychedelic" effect of the out-of-key chord, and wants (intuitively probably) to stay in G major.

BTW, B major would be a common chord in key of E minor, which would be one reason why it sounds not too out of place in your G major sequence. D-C-B would commonly resolve to Em, and following the B with Gmaj7 (Bm/G) is just a kind of "deceptive cadence". (And also provides a chromatic descending line from the C chord, E-D#-D.
IOW, even though the B major seems to be "wrong" for the key, in fact there are good (traditional) reasons why it works in that position (which is how "wrong" sounds "right" ).
But if the singer stays with D, that robs the chord of its point, IMO.
#9
^ Write a better melody next time.

Or suggest B more strongly.

B Gmaj7 D6 Cmaj7
Glad to cross paths with you on this adventure called life
Quote by Jet Penguin
lots of flirting with the other key without confirming. JUST LIKE THEIR LOVE IN THE MOVIE OH DAMN.
Quote by Hail
you're acting like you have perfect pitch or something
#10
I hear the progression in the key of B, not in the key of G. Nothing in it really suggests G that strongly. B-G-D sounds like pretty basic B minor stuff to me - with the tonic just replaced with a major chord. The ending of the progression (D-C-B) gives it kind of a "phrygian dominant" feel (think La Fiesta by Chick Corea or something like that). Oh, La Fiesta is actually a good example of using the minor third over a major chord. La Fiesta is in E (well, the A section is in E, the B section is in A major) and the chords are E-F-G-F-E. And the melody goes like G-F-G-Ab-G-F-E. Other parts of the melody in the A section also use G over the E major chord. There's nothing wrong with that. But again, if you think it sounds wrong (not looks wrong on paper - that is irrelevant), change the melody or change the chord.
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
#11
Quote by MaggaraMarine
I hear the progression in the key of B, not in the key of G. Nothing in it really suggests G that strongly.
Yes, I was thinking "scale", not key essentially .
Personally I don't get a strong sense of B as key centre, but then I haven't heard the sequence in action. How long is each chord?
To me it sounds most like a sequence in Em (or even E) with a missing tonic, but I guess one could make a case for a B phrygian vibe.
#12
A great chord progression is i-bVII-IV-I. So like Am-G-D-A or something.
There's no such thing; there never was. Where I am going you cannot follow me now.
#13
My god people - the singer simply needs to sing a note that works over the actual chord - that's it - root, third, 5th etc.. The major third is the obvious choice because it signals the change to major. No need to analyse the entire progression or to map out scales.
#14
Wow thanks for the amazing feedback guys - will try out the different suggestions and see how it goes this weekend
#15
Quote by reverb66
My god people - the singer simply needs to sing a note that works over the actual chord - that's it - root, third, 5th etc.. The major third is the obvious choice because it signals the change to major. No need to analyse the entire progression or to map out scales.


Right, but for me, it would depend how the song sounds. I would sooner change the progression to suit the melody rather than the other way around, if my melody is strong. But ya, fixing the bad clash would be as easy as moving from d to d# with the chord progression. But the melody is the most important part imo, so it takes priority, for me.

I'd have to hear it, to really know what I'd do.
#16
^ Yes, melody is important but changing a chord is going to change the sound a lot more than changing just one note in the melody. Also, some melodies would sound like crap without chords in the background. So in some cases, I would say chords are more important and I would rather change the melody a bit than the chords.


But yeah, it really depends on the song we are talking about.
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
#17
Make it B7#9. Everyone wins.
"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