Yeah so like.. I would ask 'Corwinoid'.. as you guys know him.. (I think that's how it's spelt?) this question on MSN, but he's away right now and presumed asleep. Instead of waiting for him to wake up (damn non-Aussies!) I thought I'd just ask and see if someone here knows the answer.

Anyway.. in music.. we all know what a sequence is, right? Anyway.. there is a certain type of element applied in classical (I use classical as a loose term to imply anything including baroque.. romantic.. etc) and modern forms of music (i.e. pseudo-neo classical metal, some pop, etc) that has a certain sound to it. The reason I cited the fact that it is used in modern forms of music is because it is the use of this particular element that makes people stop in their tracks whilst listening to someone like Paul Gilbert and say "wow.. that sounds like something from a classical piece".

For a long time, I kept hearing aforementioned element in various pieces I studied in music class and during choir (i.e. Vivaldi.. Bach.. Mozart.. Tarrega.. etc), and it always puzzled me, as I couldn't quite put my finger on how it was created! Then, one day, I _literally_ stumbled upon it completely by chance. When I was working on a progression based on the song "Carnival" (not sure of the composer) I had a chord progression that consisted of chords that I won't reveal to you yet. Huzzah! I had done it.. and by having made the chords myself, I could clearly see what was happening to make that sound!

All of a sudden, when I would look at music for the pieces I had listed previously, I would magically see the music doing what I could never put my finger on before (funny how that works, isn't it?).

Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you a MIDI of said element:

(Please excuse cheesy MIDI... the actual element starts at about 5~7)

Suddenly the mystery was solved!

..Or was it?

I still faced the trouble of setting a name to what I had 'discovered'. Sequence came to mind, but that would not suffice as a sequence could be any number of things (id est a progression that goes I-iii-viiº-ii). This was very tricky indeed, and I had no one to ask for help.

Those of you that downloaded the yousendit file would have seen that I named the file "Dominant sequence question mark", this may be of some hint to the name that I have assigned to this particular element. If I am not being specific enough, allow me to quote the two progressions that I have discussed in this prose:

Carnival: Am-Dm-G-C
Pour Thomas Hubble (the MIDI): Dm-Gm-C-F-Bb

Now, disregard chord qualities and observe the progression again:

Carnival: A-D-G-C
Pour Thomas Hubble (the MIDI): D-G-C-F-Bb

For the record, be sure to pay no attention to any correlation between the two progressions as they are from separate songs.

What do you notice about these progressions? No? Still nothing? Try looking at these progressions again whilst contemplating the name "dominant sequence", have you got it yet? No? I'll tell you, although you have probably all got it. Each cadence is.. hmm, how do I put it? Each cadence acts as a V-I, but then overlaps.. so we get V-I(V)-I(V)-I, etc... or V-I-IV-bVII, etc... or simply put V-V-V-V (although that can be confusing if not further clarified).

This is, of course, a sequence (tonic up four.. down five.. up four.. down five.. and so on. We could even call it tonic.. up four.. up four.. up four.. and so on). When used in the examples that I have given you, they have been reinforced by other voices that are sequencing aswell, example:

Chords: Dm-Gm-C-F-Bb
Melody: A.....Bb..G.A.F

A-Bb-G-A-F, etc (as notes, not chords)... is a sequence of its own, and we can add another voice for good measure:

MelodyII: F.....G....E.F.D

F-G-E-F-D, etc (as notes, not chords)... is, of course, a sequence of its own also.

Please note at this point, that the superimposition of the other sequences isn't a prerequisite to acquire this sound, and is only implemented to reinforce it.

Now, at the end of all that, the mystery I lay at your feet is very simple:

"What is the name of this technique?"

A simple question that I have been unable to find an answer too... surely something used so frequently can not be coincidental; it must have a specific name.

Here are some examples of music that I have found this in:

Bach - Fugue In Cm (WTC, Book I).
Mozart - Sonata In F.
Paul Gilbert - Gilberto Concerto (apparently a harpsichord concerto adapted to electric guitar?)
Francesco Tarrega - Etude In Em.
Rihanna - Unfaithful (no, not a typo. Listen to the chorus).

Thank you all in advance for your time and erudition.

i understood fook all, but dont let that get you down as i know nothing of theory. good little midi though.
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Quote by CoreysMonster
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Let me see if I have this right. Are you asking what a progression is called where a V resolves to the I, but the I in turn resolves to another I that it is the V of? Ex: A-D-G, A is the V of D, and D is the V of G.

If this is what you are asking, I THINK you are referring to the use of secondary dominants, which are dominants of a degree other than the tonic.

p.s. johnljones, I am blatantly taking the use of bolding from you, because it really does help the key terms stand out lol
Quote by DiatonicD
Paul Gilbert - Gilberto Concerto (apparently a harpsichord concerto adapted to electric guitar?)

That would be Harpsichord Concerto in A major by J.C. Bach.
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He has been given a large brain by mistake, since for him the spinal cord would fully suffice.

Remember: A prudent question is one half of wisdom.

If you kept the idea of secondary dominants going long enough you'd simply go 'round the circle of 5ths, hence what's known as a circle progression. I believe Hey Joe (Jimi Hendrix) is an example of this.

^ i think psychodelia has it and you are right, MANY songs use this format across all types of music (jazz,blues,rock,pop,classical and even some eastern music) i know i have written a song with this type of progession before.
After a quick, the question concerns... secondary dominants? idk, I'll have to read closer once I'm awake...

Cor should be able to do this is his sleep...
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^Secondary dominants are really borrowed chords. Say DiatonicD's progression is in Bb - Dm-Gm-C-F-Bb. The D could be called the v of vi. Usually, it'd be taken from the harmonic minor for it to be called a secondary dominant, so D major. It could be written like this:


But like I say, for them to be true secondary dominants, they'd probably have to be major chords. I'm not positive though.
Its a harmonic sequence. There's loads of them...

Hell, wait till you see it in 4 voices, if you think that's some kind of mad classical "technique".

Take a look at the Christmas Concerto, Somewhere Over the Rainbow... loadsa things.

I can't believe we need to get a composer in to answer what is a grade 5 theory question...
I was just trying to discuss this in a thread I made the other day. Its used in jazz - the ii-V-I sequence is in essence part of this.

The way I explain it is a descending chromatic melody, even if you don't focus on it, one note in the chord is always going down a halfstep and sticking to the key of the previous chord.
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In effect, the ii-V-I progression is using the principle as well. The ii chord is the v chord of the V; i.e. if we're in C major the progression would be Dm G C; Dm is the v chord of G.

Its a harmonic sequence. There's loads of them..

I know that it's a harmonic sequence.. I was asking if this particular type had a specific name.

Anyway, I went to wiki and found a bit about it:

"When used in music, a secondary dominant is very often (though not inevitably) directly followed by the chord of which it is the dominant. Thus V/II is normally followed by II, V/VI by VI, and so on. This is similar to the general pattern of music wherein the simple chord V is often followed by I. The tonic is said to "resolve" the slight dissonance created by the dominant. Indeed, the sequence V/X + X, where X is some basic chord, is thought of by some musicians as a tiny modulation, acting as a miniature dominant-tonic sequence in the key of X.

The concept of the secondary dominant was not recognized in writings on music theory prior to 1939. Before this time, in music of Bach, Mozart, Beethoven, and Brahms, a secondary dominant, along with its chord of resolution, was considered to be a modulation. Because the effect of modulation was so short, and did not sound like a real arrival of a new key, the two chords had a special name--"transient modulation"--that is, a modulation in which the new key is not established. Since this was a rather self-contradictory description, theorists in the early 1900s, such as Frank Shepard, Benjamin Cutter, and George Wedge, searched for a better description of the phenomenon.

In 1939, in a monograph entitled "Principles of Harmonic Analysis," Walter Piston first used the analysis "V7 of IV." (Notably, Piston's analytical symbol always used the word "of"--e.g. "V7 of IV" rather than the virgule "V7/IV.) In his 1941 "Harmony" Piston used the term "secondary dominant" for the first time. It has been generally accepted into music theory since then."

That pretty much explains it..