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#1
Hi!

This is a thing just keeps popping in my mind aren't like A minor and C major the same thing? it bother's that i don't find a real difference between them like both got the same notes and same major, minor and dominants like:

A minor
Amin Bdim Cmaj Dmin Emin Fmaj Gmaj Amin
C major
Cmaj Dmin Emin Fmaj Gmaj Amin Bdim Cmaj

What's the REAL difference between them? I don't get it, someone smarter than me, please explain.
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#2
A C major scale is a scale with a tonic of C that consists of intervals of a major second, a major third, a perfect fourth, a perfect fifth, a major sixth, and a major seventh.

An A minor scale is a scale with a tonic of A that consists of intervals of a major second, a minor third, a perfect fourth, a perfect fifth, a minor sixth, and a minor seventh.

The notes are the only thing they have in common. The chords, the intervals, and the tonal center are all different. If you really want to compare major and minor, compare parallel scales.

C major: C-D-E-F-G-A-B
C minor: C-D-Eb-F-G-Ab-Bb
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#3
A minor is the relative minor of C major. A minor uses the same notes of C major, but resolves to A.

Every major key has a relative minor. That's because the minor scale is based on one of the modes of the major scale, the 6th degree to be exact. This mode is known as the Aeolian mode. The relative minor of each major key is the 6th note of the key's major scale. The 6th note of C major is A. However, instead of using the A major scale, you follow the notes of the C major scale, except you start on the 6th degree. A B C D E F G A = A minor.

The chords and notes of C major and A minor are the same, yet A minor resolves to A, and the minor scale is a sad, down-sounding scale as opposed to the happy major scale.
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#4
No but i mean like this that aren't the C major and A minor basicly the same thing? same thing with for an example E minor ja G major are the same, the F minor and a G# major the same thing?

EDIT: now i get it, thanks!
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#5
Quote by philipp122
A minor is the relative minor of C major. A minor uses the same notes of C major, but resolves to A.

Every major key has a relative minor. That's because the minor scale is based on one of the modes of the major scale, the 6th degree to be exact. This mode is known as the Aeolian mode. The relative minor of each major key is the 6th note of the key's major scale. The 6th note of C major is A. However, instead of using the A major scale, you follow the notes of the C major scale, except you start on the 6th degree. A B C D E F G A = A minor.

The chords and notes of C major and A minor are the same, yet A minor resolves to A, and the minor scale is a sad, down-sounding scale as opposed to the happy major scale.


Modes have nothing to do with this. Bringing them up will only confuse him. The mood of the scale is entirely dependent on context as well. Most of the sad songs I know are in major, and I'd be hard pressed to name a song in a minor key that I find sad.

No but i mean like this that aren't the C major and A minor basicly the same thing? same thing with for an example E minor ja G major are the same, the F minor and a G# major the same thing?


No. The only thing they have in common are the notes. Everything else is different.
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#6
The A minor scale has the b3, b6, and b7 tones when compared to the A major scale. The A major scale has the notes A B C# D E F# G#. So, the C# becomes C natural, F# becomes F natural, etc. It has the same notes as a C major scale, but they are totally different formulas.
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Last edited by Iron_Dude at Jul 13, 2008,
#7
They use the same notes. THey are in different keys and resolve to different tonal centers. They *look* the same because a major key's relative minor is based on the key's major scale, so they use the same notes. However, they resolve to different tonal centers.
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#8
Quote by Archeo Avis
Modes have nothing to do with this. Bringing them up will only confuse him. The mood of the scale is entirely dependent on context as well. Most of the sad songs I know are in major, and I'd be hard pressed to name a song in a minor key that I find sad.


I know my modes pretty good mister, aeolian mode is the minor scale right? but that wasn't my question on this.
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#9
The difference is that they have different intervals, different tonics, and will resolve to the root differently, if that makes any sense. I'm basically just repeating what everyone else said.

EDIT: And no, you do not fully understand modes. Don't stress over it though; they are difficult to understand.

Modes do NOT allow for diminished chords and accidentals like diatonic scales do.
Last edited by linfield4466 at Jul 13, 2008,
#10
Quote by Punkismygod
I know my modes pretty good mister, aeolian mode is the minor scale right? but that wasn't my question on this.


Aeolian implies modal music, which is incredibly rare. The terms are not interchangeable.
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#11
Quote by Archeo Avis
Aeolian implies modal music, which is incredibly rare. The terms are not interchangeable.


Yea but if you combine modes with ur key it comes pretty neat sounding stuff (atleast I've found so) let's say that I use chords in the key of Am:

Am F G I VI VII and use just and A minor over it and change then to phrygian scale, it will sound mind blowing, but this is just me.

Edit: Expect that the chords wouldn't work i just realised let's change it to a Am Em and a G
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Last edited by Punkismygod at Jul 13, 2008,
#12
Quote by Punkismygod
Yea but if you combine modes with ur key it comes pretty neat sounding stuff (atleast I've found so) let's say that I use chords in the key of Am:

Am F G I VI VII and use just and A minor over it and change then to phrygian scale, it will sound mind blowing, but this is just me.

Edit: Expect that the chords wouldn't work i just realised let's change it to a Am Em and a G


How are you changing to phrygian? The tonal center isn't E, so E phrygian is unusable, and A phrygians b2 would clash horribly, and isn't even implied by the harmony. That progression isn't modal. Neither is the second one.
Someones knowledge of guitar companies spelling determines what amps you can own. Really smart people can own things like Framus because they sound like they might be spelled with a "y" but they aren't.
#13
well then let's try this one:
C major 1 2 3 4 5 6 7
C phyrigian 1 2b 3b 4 5 6b 7b
C minor 1 2b 3b 4 5 6b 7b

And I'd be using key of C minor and chords C Ebmin and Abmin, I'd play with C minor over those and then change to C phrygian at some point?
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#14
C minor has a major second

Your progression doesn't make much sense to me, you are using a C minor scale over those chords? Where did you pull the chords from?

Edit: Did you mean Cm, Eb, and Ab?
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Last edited by zipppy2006 at Jul 13, 2008,
#15
Well, let's take parallel keys for instance (Cmajor and Cmin).

One is C D E F G A B
The other one is C D Eb F G Ab Bb

Now, there are 3 different notes in there, Eb, Ab, and Bb. So you should see that the difference is in there.
However, the minor 7th, or Bb when used could make the key confusing, since it could be Cminor or its relative major, Ebmajor. Also, most times the 7th is sharpened to resolve better to the tonic in a minor key (whose note also concides with the relative major one), so differencing the keys by looking at the 7th is not a good idea (of course, I am talking about parallel keys here, since you would surely have the key signature for the minor key and if the 7th degree is sharpened you could easily determine it as a minor key).

So, that leaves you Eb (3rd) and Ab (6th). These are called "modal notes" (if I remember correctly). So look for those (along with the sharpened 7th when deciding if it is major or it's relative minor, which it's what you are doing since you already know the key signature) when deciding if it is major or minor...
#18
Quote by zipppy2006
Edit: Did you mean Cm, Eb, and Ab?


oh yeah, did mess up AGAIN :S would it work with -^ those chords? over phrygian C and a C minor?
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#19
Quote by Punkismygod
oh yeah, did mess up AGAIN :S would it work with -^ those chords? over phrygian C and a C minor?


You don't seem to understand that modal music and key based music are entirely seperate from each other, you can't dip in and out.

You could simply include and accidental to include a flattened second, but that might clash with the chords.
#20
oh yeah, did mess up AGAIN :S would it work with -^ those chords? over phrygian C and a C minor?

Yes, you could play C phrygian over Cm Eb Ab, as none of those chord contain a D, so you're free to make it D or Db (2 or b2)
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#21
Quote by Ænimus Prime
Yes, you could play C phrygian over Cm Eb Ab, as none of those chord contain a D, so you're free to make it D or Db (2 or b2)


Except it wouldn't be C Phrygian, it would just be C minor with an occasionally flattened 2nd degree...
#22
Quote by Pagan-Pie
You don't seem to understand that modal music and key based music are entirely seperate from each other, you can't dip in and out.

You could simply include and accidental to include a flattened second, but that might clash with the chords.



Well then let's speak theoritically. Chords Cm Eb Ab In the key of C minor, I could Use C Aeolion or a C phrygian over them, is that ok?
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#23
Quote by pagan pie
Except it wouldn't be C Phrygian, it would just be C minor with an occasionally flattened 2nd degree...
C minor with a flattened 2nd degree is C Db Eb F G Ab Bb, right?
C phrygian is C Db Eb F G Ab Bb right?
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#24
Quote by Punkismygod
Well then let's speak theoritically. Chords Cm Eb Ab In the key of C minor, I could Use C Aeolion or a C phrygian over them, is that ok?


C Phrygian is in no way related to C minor, except that they share the same tonic. Techically it is possible to play C Phrygian over those chords, but then the chords are no longer in the key of C minor, or any key. It will be a modal chord progression.

If you switch between the two scales, then you won't be using modes. At all.
#25
Quote by Ænimus Prime
C minor with a flattened 2nd degree is C Db Eb F G Ab Bb, right?
C phrygian is C Db Eb F G Ab Bb right?


Yes that is true, but there is a distinct difference between modal and key-based music. I'm being very fussy, but people need to learn that you can't just switch between the two all the time.
#26
Quote by Pagan-Pie
C Phrygian is in no way related to C minor, except that they share the same tonic. Techically it is possible to play C Phrygian over those chords, but then the chords are no longer in the key of C minor, or any key. It will be a modal chord progression.

If you switch between the two scales, then you won't be using modes. At all.


So I can't switch between two modes, Can I switch between one mode and a pentatonic scale? I heard Rhoads used lots of Dorian mode and pentatonic minor.

Quote by Pagan-Pie
Yes that is true, but there is a distinct difference between modal and key-based music. I'm being very fussy, but people need to learn that you can't just switch between the two all the time.


If it sounds good, does it really matter?
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Last edited by Punkismygod at Jul 13, 2008,
#27
Quote by pagan pie
Yes that is true, but there is a distinct difference between modal and key-based music.
What exactly is that difference? I see key-based music as a way to change modes fluidly.
If you switch between the two scales, then you won't be using modes. At all
What will you be using?
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Quote by MudMartin
Only looking at music as math and theory, is like only looking at the love of your life as flesh and bone.

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Counting bodies like sheep to the rhythm of the war drums
#28
Quote by Punkismygod
So I can't switch between two modes, Can I switch between one mode and a pentatonic scale? I heard Rhoads used lots of Dorian mode and pentatonic minor.


He may have if he was playing bluesy music.

Blues is quite complicated, as the tonality is often blurred. It makes heavy use of the pentatonic scale, and is almost always in a major key, despite the flattened 3rd, 7th and sometimes 5th which are commonly employed. The major 6th however is retained, and as such gives the impression of the Dorian mode, which contains a sharp (major) 6th when compared to the Minor scale.
#29
Quote by Ænimus Prime
What exactly is that difference? I see key-based music as a way to change modes fluidly.

I'm not sure I follow you. Are you saying that all music is therefore modal?
#30
Quote by Ænimus Prime
What exactly is that difference? I see key-based music as a way to change modes fluidly.
What will you be using?



He'll simply be playing C minor with an accidental. Modes are nothing but a restriction... key based music is far more free and allows greater creativity. This is why it replaced modal music around the Baroque period.
#32
Quote by :-D
I'm not sure I follow you. Are you saying that all music is therefore modal?
I think modes (collections of intervals) are a fundamental part of all music. If you have melody and/or harmony the notes are heard in relation to each other and those relations (intervals) can be described in terms of modes.

Once again, pagan pie, what exactly is the difference between modal music and key based music?

Here's a quote from wiki:
While all tonal music may technically be described as modal, music that is called modal often has less diatonic functionality and changes key less often than other music.
I would hardly call that a 'distinct' difference. Theres a spectrum.
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Quote by MudMartin
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#34
Quote by Ænimus Prime
I think modes (collections of intervals) are a fundamental part of all music. If you have melody and/or harmony the notes are heard in relation to each other and those relations (intervals) can be described in terms of modes.

Once again, pagan pie, what exactly is the difference between modal music and key based music?

Here's a quote from wiki:
I would hardly call that a 'distinct' difference. Theres a spectrum.


Key based music allows accidentals, more complex textures etc etc etc...

Wikipedia can hardly be regarded as a serious place to learn about music.
I'm all for you having an opinion, but you are disregarding what is normally considered musical fact.
#35
Quote by Ænimus Prime
I think modes (collections of intervals) are a fundamental part of all music. If you have melody and/or harmony the notes are heard in relation to each other and those relations (intervals) can be described in terms of modes.

It's an interesting take - I think our disagreements have stemmed from an inability to decide on whether or not they are most effectively described in modal terms.
#36
then what the heck are u supposed to use when soloing? only the same scale as the key? that'd be really boring sound quickly.
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#37
Quote by pagan
Key based music allows accidentals
Are you saying that if I play a melody using the intervals/scale degrees 1 2 b3 4 5 6 b7 over a i IV7 vamp for god knows how long, then finally ending the piece by using a major seventh to lead to the tonic, does that mean that I'm actually using the parallel minor key, and it won't sound like dorian?
Quote by :-D
It's an interesting take - I think our disagreements have stemmed from an inability to decide on whether or not they are most effectively described in modal terms.
When it sounds like a mode, I'll call it that mode
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Last edited by Ænimus Prime at Jul 13, 2008,
#38
Quote by Ænimus Prime
Are you saying that if I play a melody using the intervals/scale degrees 1 2 b3 4 5 6 b7 over a i IV7 vamp for god knows how long, then finally ending the piece by using a major seventh to lead to the tonic, does that mean that I'm actually using the parallel minor key, and it won't sound like dorian?


No, modal music and key based music are applied totally differently, and the example you gave was very much modal.
But you can't just switch in and out of modes and keys, it just doesn't work that way. That's a fact. There is no room for interpretations.

then what the heck are u supposed to use when soloing? only the same scale as the key? that'd be really boring sound quickly.


Use accidentals. That's what I've been talking about the whole time.
#40
Quote by pagan pie
No, modal music and key based music are applied totally differently, and the example you gave was very much modal.
So modal music allows accidentals then, as does key based music.

more complex textures
What exactly do you mean by texture?
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Quote by MudMartin
Only looking at music as math and theory, is like only looking at the love of your life as flesh and bone.

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