#1
Since 5th chords don't have major or minor tonality, is it possible to substitute any chord in a key for a 5th chord as long as the root and 5th are in key?

I want to improvise over my own backing track with C harmonic minor. The chord progression I came up with is C minor - G major - Ab major- F minor. Would it also work if I just played C5 - G5 - Ab5 - F5? I'm having trouble coming up with a good-sounding riff that will work with C harmonic minor.

Also, does a song ever resolve to a major or minor chord, or just a tone? For example, would you say that a song resolves to A minor or just to A?

Also, does anyone have any examples of any songs that use the harmonic minor scale, other than Sweet Child?
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#3
Of course that works. Those notes are in key.

If you play Dm-G7 you want to hear a C note (the progression is in C major so it wants to resolve to C) but you mostly want to hear Cmaj because of the half step resolutions from G7-Cmaj. It could really be either.
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#4
Quote by philipp122
Since 5th chords don't have major or minor tonality, is it possible to substitute any chord in a key for a 5th chord as long as the root and 5th are in key?

I want to improvise over my own backing track with C harmonic minor. The chord progression I came up with is C minor - G major - Ab major- F minor. Would it also work if I just played C5 - G5 - Ab5 - F5? I'm having trouble coming up with a good-sounding riff that will work with C harmonic minor.


Yes, you can substitute any chord in a progression for the fifth chord, as long as the fifth fits in the key which it always would for a major or minor chord because the fifth is already there but it might not for something like a sus4 chord.

However, i think your problem probably arises from the chords not all being in the same key - the B natural in the G major chord is not in the key of Eb major, or C (natural) minor, though it would be in the harmonic minor. I suggest that you try to not use a b in the riff.
#5
^ I thought this WAS in C harmonic minor?

And yes, the only time you couldn't use powerchords is for the 2,3, or 7th. The 2nd and 7th are diminished so you'd need a "tri-tone powerchord" or for the 3rd, an "augmented power chord".
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#6
Quote by metal4all
Of course that works. Those notes are in key.

If you play Dm-G7 you want to hear a C note (the progression is in C major so it wants to resolve to C) but you mostly want to hear Cmaj because of the half step resolutions from G7-Cmaj. It could really be either.


Wait a second, you confused me on the second part. I thought it was in C minor?
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#7
Quote by philipp122
Wait a second, you confused me on the second part. I thought it was in C minor?

That example I gave is in C major. I was just explaining how sometimes the resolution should be an entire chord. There isn't a rule or anything but for a fuller resolution you would need a chord.
“Science cannot solve the ultimate mystery of nature. And that is because, in the last analysis, we ourselves are part of nature and therefore part of the mystery that we are trying to solve.”


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#8
Quote by metal4all
^ I thought this WAS in C harmonic minor?

And yes, the only time you couldn't use powerchords is for the 2,3, or 7th. The 2nd and 7th are diminished so you'd need a "tri-tone powerchord" or for the 3rd, an "augmented power chord".

Well, chords (even in minor keys) are usually build upon the major or the natural minor, not the harmonic minor. This would mean that the F minor wouldn't strictly be in key therefore some notes over it may sound "off".

This is just a guess though, i have no idea why C harmonic minor isn't working for him, and i haven't tried soloing over it in C harmonic minor.
#9
You can build chords off of any scale you please. I don't get what you're saying, sorry.
“Science cannot solve the ultimate mystery of nature. And that is because, in the last analysis, we ourselves are part of nature and therefore part of the mystery that we are trying to solve.”


-Max Planck

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#10
Quote by metal4all
You can build chords off of any scale you please. I don't get what you're saying, sorry.

Sorry, maybe i wasn't being clear enough. Yes, you can build chords off any scale, but to be in one minor key, chords are usually build using the natural minor scale. If you use the harmonic minor then you will get chords like the G major, which isn't in key, therefore making the B natural an accidental.

I was just suggesting that some notes in C harmonic minor might sound odd over this chord, because the harmonic minor is usually used over chords in the minor key, so this might cause some notes in the C harmonic minor chord sound wrong so TS would think that it wasn't working.

If this was the case then making them into power chords would help because it would remove the B natural, so the G5 would imply G minor instead, making it more like a normal minor progression. However, this would probably change the sound of the progression more than changing to power chords in other circumstances where there are no accidentals in the progression.
#11
Ahhh okay. I get what you mean.
“Science cannot solve the ultimate mystery of nature. And that is because, in the last analysis, we ourselves are part of nature and therefore part of the mystery that we are trying to solve.”


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#12
^Surprisingly, so do I! Thanks for the help. Since you're saying that I shouldn't use the B note, I guess it would be OK if I started with the C minor, then went down to G5, then up to either Ab5 or Ab major, then F5.

When I used F minor and G major, I couldn't get it to sound good.
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#13
Sorry, maybe i wasn't being clear enough. Yes, you can build chords off any scale, but to be in one minor key, chords are usually build using the natural minor scale. If you use the harmonic minor then you will get chords like the G major, which isn't in key, therefore making the B natural an accidental.


In most genres "minor key" would imply harmonic minor. The use of the V7 is the rule rather than the exception, though it is still an accidental.

TS: Yes, you can replace any chord in the progression with an X5 chord (the vii in a major progression and the ii in a minor progression have diminished fifth, but it's still fine to use an X5 anyway) Just be careful about overdoing it. Powerchords are ambiguous, and don't establish tonality nearly as strongly as real chords.
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Last edited by Archeo Avis at Jul 16, 2008,
#14
Quote by Archeo Avis
In most genres "minor key" would imply harmonic minor. The use of the V7 is the rule rather than the exception, though it is still an accidental.
But what about the new chords the nat7 creates?
#15
Quote by bangoodcharlote
But what about the new chords the nat7 creates?


I would imagine they're generally ignored. The whole purpose of harmonic minor is the V7. I don't think composers really had the various augmented and diminished chords in mind when they developed it.
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#16
Quote by Archeo Avis
I would imagine they're generally ignored. The whole purpose of harmonic minor is the V7. I don't think composers really had the various augmented and diminished chords in mind when they developed it.
So you would say that, in practice, the chords in Am are Am Bdim C Dm E F G?
#17
Quote by bangoodcharlote
So you would say that, in practice, the chords in Am are Am Bdim C Dm E F G?


The vast majority of the time, yes (in jazz and classical, at least). I take it you're about to correct me on this?
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.
#18
Quote by Archeo Avis
I take it you're about to correct me on this?
No. The phrase "in practice" makes the statement correct. I just wanted your point completely explained.
#19
Quote by philipp122
I want to improvise over my own backing track with C harmonic minor. The chord progression I came up with is C minor - G major - Ab major- F minor. Would it also work if I just played C5 - G5 - Ab5 - F5? I'm having trouble coming up with a good-sounding riff that will work with C harmonic minor.



I saw a good vid on youtube earlier with Satch. He said that the less notes you have in the chords, the more freedom you have with the melody and improvisation. So yes, 5th chords would probably be better to jam out your riff.
Last edited by mdc at Jul 16, 2008,
#20
Quote by Arch
I would imagine they're generally ignored. The whole purpose of harmonic minor is the V7. I don't think composers really had the various augmented and diminished chords in mind when they developed it.
I would say the whole purpose of harmonic minor is the leading tone, which is also in the III+ and viio chords but you could make the argument that they're all pretty much the same chord anyway.
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#21
Quote by Ænimus Prime
I would say the whole purpose of harmonic minor is the leading tone, which is also in the III+ and viio chords
Except Am C Dm E7 would is a somewhat common progression.
#22
Quote by philipp122
Since 5th chords don't have major or minor tonality, is it possible to substitute any chord in a key for a 5th chord as long as the root and 5th are in key?

^ I believe so

Quote by philipp122
I want to improvise over my own backing track with C harmonic minor. The chord progression I came up with is C minor - G major - Ab major- F minor. Would it also work if I just played C5 - G5 - Ab5 - F5? I'm having trouble coming up with a good-sounding riff that will work with C harmonic minor.

^As the main reason for the harmonic minor was to retain the strong resolve in a V-i progression, and if the point of your exercise is just to create a backing track to solo over try switching the F minor with the G major giving a progression like Cm Fm Ab G.

Quote by philipp122
Also, does a song ever resolve to a major or minor chord, or just a tone? For example, would you say that a song resolves to A minor or just to A?

I think that's a rather interesting question. It's debatable, but my opinion on the matter -I would say the minor quality contributes to the sense of resolve on a more complex level within the chord (especially if you start embellishing chords with extensions or suspended thirds) but the A is the essential part of the resolve and can do the job on it's own if you need it to.

Quote by philipp122
Also, does anyone have any examples of any songs that use the harmonic minor scale, other than Sweet Child?

Um...parts of songs. Can't think of any full songs. Anywhere a minor key is used with a V-i resolve. The Am E Am in house of the rising sun.
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#23
Quote by philipp122

Also, does anyone have any examples of any songs that use the harmonic minor scale, other than Sweet Child?
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#24
Quote by sue
Except Am C Dm E7 would is a somewhat common progression.
And? I'm not saying you can't use III, I'm saying that you shouldn't ignore III+.
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