#1
Ok, here's a question. If you're playing in G Ionian, and you go into A Dorian, aren't you just playing in G or what? I'm a little confused so help would be appreciated.
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#2
A Dorian is the second mode of the G major scale, so they contain the same notes, the root note is just stressed moreso then the Ionian, so yes they are both in the key of G major
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#3
its the same notes as a g ionian scale, but it is a mode and you use A as the root note so it gives the scale a different sound.
#4
Yes, you'd be playing the same notes. But you'd only change from G Ionian to A Dorian if the root note behind it (e.g. rhythm guitar or bassist) changed to an Am or just a root A and you wanted a minor tonality.

They'd have the same notes (G A B C D E F#), but the A Dorian would have different intervals from the root note of A (T S T T T S T) as opposed to the major sounding Ionian from its root note of G (T T S T T T S). Its all about intervals.
#5
any answer after this one is not needed...three people just said the exact same thing, no need to make the thread longer than need be
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#6
Additional posting is necessary because I deem it so!

You can play a 5th position A Dorian scale over a G Ionian progression. You'll probably want to resolve to a G note though.
#7
Quote by axe_grinder247
A Dorian is the second mode of the G major scale, so they contain the same notes, the root note is just stressed moreso then the Ionian, so yes they are both in the key of G major

actually, i would disagree that they are both in the key of G major. A dorian doesnt even resolve to G, so how can it possibly be in any key of G? i would say G ionian is in G major and A dorian is in A minor. think of it this way, if you are playing a progression based on A dorian, you will resolve to A minor. you dont even have to use a G chord anywhere in the progression. and thats why i would say that A dorian is in the key of A minor. obviously it also depends on your usage of the mode and what chords you are playing, but if you are just talking about the A dorian scale, i would say its Am.
#8
Quote by jof1029
actually, i would disagree that they are both in the key of G major. A dorian doesnt even resolve to G, so how can it possibly be in any key of G? i would say G ionian is in G major and A dorian is in A minor. think of it this way, if you are playing a progression based on A dorian, you will resolve to A minor. you dont even have to use a G chord anywhere in the progression. and thats why i would say that A dorian is in the key of A minor. obviously it also depends on your usage of the mode and what chords you are playing, but if you are just talking about the A dorian scale, i would say its Am.
Do you know what a key is ? It's short for key signature. And the key signature tells you what notes are sharp or flat in a musical piece.

So A Dorian is the same key as G Ionian. They're two different modes, though. And that's important. Because when you change the modes you change the overall sound because the relationships of every note within the key change.
#9
Quote by garett
Do you know what a key is ? It's short for key signature. And the key signature tells you what notes are sharp or flat in a musical piece.

So A Dorian is the same key as G Ionian. They're two different modes, though. And that's important. Because when you change the modes you change the overall sound because the relationships of every note within the key change.
You dolt. That's completely wrong. A key signature shows the key, not the scale. Something in A Dorian would have no accidentals in the key signiture.
#10
Quote by garett
Do you know what a key is ? It's short for key signature. And the key signature tells you what notes are sharp or flat in a musical piece.

So A Dorian is the same key as G Ionian. They're two different modes, though. And that's important. Because when you change the modes you change the overall sound because the relationships of every note within the key change.


i know what you are saying, but i tend to look at the key of the piece more as where it resolves. i mean, E aeolian is said to be a different key from G ionian, yet by what you are saying they are the same key because they have the same notes. i just find that looking at what notes are used in a piece doesnt always provide as accurate a picture as to what the key is, so instead i look to see where it resolves.

oh, and i dont think that key is short for key signature. they key signature is as you said, the thing at the beginning of music that tells you what sharps and flats are used. the key though is where the piece resolves. the key signature is a useful tool in figuring out the key, but it does not always indicate it.

hey, the way i look at it may not be the exact text book definition, and hey i could even be completly wrong. but either way, i find my way of looking at it to be a heck of a lot more useful than just saying, oh i have only an F# so im in G major or E minor. you are completly discounting any relation of chords to one another and any movement in the piece, so i think its not the best way to look at it.
#11
Quote by jof1029
oh, and i dont think that key is short for key signature. they key signature is as you said, the thing at the beginning of music that tells you what sharps and flats are used. the key though is where the piece resolves. the key signature is a useful tool in figuring out the key, but it does not always indicate it.
This is nitpicking .. but for the sake of clarity and not confusing the hell out of people .. what you are doing is confusing key with tonal center.

Key is always short for key signature. What mode a song or a piece resolves to is called the tonal center.

A lot of people use the two terms interchangeably .. and it usually doesn't matter .. and I'm not the type of person who usually cares and nitpicks about what terms are used just to show off how big of a theory encyclopedia I am. But you run into problems when you say "G Ionian is not the same key as A Dorian" because when you take it literally it is just simply wrong. They share the same key .. though they are completely different modes. And using one as a tonal center is completely different than using the other.
Last edited by garett at May 29, 2006,
#12
Quote by jof1029
actually, i would disagree that they are both in the key of G major. A dorian doesnt even resolve to G, so how can it possibly be in any key of G? i would say G ionian is in G major and A dorian is in A minor. think of it this way, if you are playing a progression based on A dorian, you will resolve to A minor. you dont even have to use a G chord anywhere in the progression. and thats why i would say that A dorian is in the key of A minor. obviously it also depends on your usage of the mode and what chords you are playing, but if you are just talking about the A dorian scale, i would say its Am.


G Ionian - G, A, B, C, D, E, F#

A Dorian - A, B, C, D, E, F#, G

A Minor - A, B, C, D, E, F, G

theoretically speaking, they both DO contain the EXACT same notes, you're confusing him with talk of tonal centers, and i do agree that the dorian mode is a minor-based mode, but it's still (in theory) in the key of G major...the A minor scale doesn't even have an F#
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#13
what you guys are saying makes sense from a theory standpoint, but it doesnt really seem to make sense in all aplications. like take the chord progression D Em7 Am. what you are saying is that that progression is in G major. yet to me, it doesnt look like it would be in any type of G key. it sounds to me like its in Am because there is a strong resolution to Am. now, since i dont have a lot of technical theory teaching (mostly books and online), im willing to say im wrong. but could someone just explain this a bit more? im getting the impression from this that key has only to do with what notes are used, and nothing to do with resolution and note emphasis. yet what ive learned is that resolution and which notes are being emphasized are very important in determining key, and what notes are used are sorta like a starting point. so is the key only what notes are used?
#14
Yes its relatively all the same scale. Just starting on different notes of the tonic scale.
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#15
Quote by jof1029
what you guys are saying makes sense from a theory standpoint, but it doesnt really seem to make sense in all aplications. like take the chord progression D Em7 Am. what you are saying is that that progression is in G major. yet to me, it doesnt look like it would be in any type of G key. it sounds to me like its in Am because there is a strong resolution to Am. now, since i dont have a lot of technical theory teaching (mostly books and online), im willing to say im wrong. but could someone just explain this a bit more? im getting the impression from this that key has only to do with what notes are used, and nothing to do with resolution and note emphasis. yet what ive learned is that resolution and which notes are being emphasized are very important in determining key, and what notes are used are sorta like a starting point. so is the key only what notes are used?

ok so let me ramble for a minute or so.

The resolution IS the key. You're right. The notes are just the notes until you arrange them in a particular order.

The basis for this is the order of strengths... 1 3 5 7 9 11 13... 1 is the strongest note in the scale, the most defining... the third is next because it determines major/minor... so on and so forth. You may notice that this is the order in which chords are built up as well (chords = scales = modes = chords = scales = modes = ...)

For each new mode, the order or strengths changes... in G ionian, it's G B D F# A C E... now, take one of its modes, say D mixolydian... now the order is D F# A C E G B D... see where G went? Wayyyyyyyy to the back, so it plays a smaller role in giving D mixolydian its sound. Get it?

Now, we get into HOW you get this sound to come along. Well, of course, it's an art you pay thousands of dollars to learn. This is where the resolution part comes in. If you're playing mindless notes in the *position* that you learned for D mixolydian, there's no distinguishable resolution to the D note itself, so the ear just says, "oh, hey, G ionian." But if you work around the order of strengths for D mixolydian and play more notes from the left side (1 3...) than the right side (11 13...), you can feel the resolution, and THUS, you are playing in D mixolydian.

It's not easy to do... to play those target notes... my band has a song that is really based around A major, but in the main progression we throw a Gmaj chord in there (basically, A E G D are the chords). So, when I'm soloing, I watch out for the G# that is located within A ionian, which WOULD be the key until that Gmaj appears out of nowhere. So, the key then becomes A mixolydian... I focus on resolving to the A note but I also target the b7th (G) to let the listener know that this ain't A ionian.

Now, when you see the notes in sheet music, the key signature will only tell you the number of sharps/flats. Usually, though, the author will say (when you see, for example, 2 sharps) that the key is not necessarily the ionian mode. A good example I see that is real simple is "Misty Mountain Hop" by Led Zeppelin. My tab book shows 2 sharps, suggesting D major/ionian, but below the music, it says "Key signature reflects A mixolydian" (the main riff has a G note in it, remember).

So yeah. Throw more questions here.


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#16
^ yeah, see thats the stuff i remember reading. the whole, resolution is the key stuff. i guess i never really thought about fully applying the order of strengths to modes, but i know i apply it. like when soloing over a chord, i tend to target the strong tones that give define the scale mode. ok, so that brings up the first question. say you have something like phrygian mode, where one of the defining characteristics is the b2. i kinda think of that b2 as a target note because it gives phrygian its feel, but the order of strengths puts it kinda far away. so does this mean to take the order of strengths kinda with a grain of salt? so you target those strong notes and the notes that give the mode its flavor, or something like that?

ok, then for the song you talk about your band wrote, the one that is in A major but has G major. it resolves to A major, but uses the A mixolydian mode. would you say that is the key of A major or the key of A mixolydian? thats really my main question here, because you and i both seem to agree that it isnt in the key of D if the resolution is to A. so the key is A major or A mixolydian? i think thats really where i lose myself.


PS: your third sentence made me happy
#17
Related question about the lydian mode: Seeing as it's the fourth mode (I'm probably wrong about too, so just correct me if I am) I would play the C lydian mode if I was playing in the key of A, and D# if I was playing in the key of C etc. Right? (probably not...again, correct me)
#19
Quote by bangoodcharlote
You dolt. That's completely wrong. A key signature shows the key, not the scale. Something in A Dorian would have no accidentals in the key signiture.



it seemed pretty right to me. Why wouldn't it have an F# in the key signature?
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#20
^^i believe it would, seeing that A dorian is in the key of G major, and G major contains an F#...
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