#1
Ive recently been studying up on chord progressions and finding out what key the song is in by what chords are played. In the song down in a hole by aic the chords are Amin D G for the main riff. Is this ii V I in the key of G?
#3
Could also use a C and a Bm?
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I got a packet of Love Hearts when I was six and every one said 'You Have a Tiny Penis'

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#7
Even though ii-V-I is a very common JAZZ progression, if you're listening to Alice In Chains, that's a completely different story. That is why finding out the tonal center/where the song wants to resolve (according to Sue, It's Amin).

Pretty weird I came across this thread whilst listening to "Shame In You"
“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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#9
Quote by /-\liceNChains
Sue im not disagreeing with you but could you help me to understand why it is in Am.
It sounds resolved on Am, not G. Also, the song just sounds minor.

Another big clue is that they end on an A major chord. It is common to end in such a way because it gives a gloomy song a happy ending. It doesn't make much sense to end a song in G on an A chord.
#10
Quote by branny1982
sorry?

In C the D is minor.


Yeah but you are playing in G, so B is minor
Quote by Cobain_Is_King
I got a packet of Love Hearts when I was six and every one said 'You Have a Tiny Penis'

SuperLol'd
#11
Quote by /-\liceNChains
Ive recently been studying up on chord progressions and finding out what key the song is in by what chords are played. In the song down in a hole by aic the chords are Amin D G for the main riff. Is this ii V I in the key of G?


I don't know the song so am not sure where it resolves to. You can definitely use those chords to resolve to the G. But I don't doubt Sue and she's right about the A at the end being a big clue.

What you did with the chord analysis to get the key was correct. That is how you would work out a scale for a song. You did good. It was just bad luck you picked a song that is a little different.

What you need to do is start taking your analysis it one step further and determine where the song resolves. This is actually what I do first. Determine which chord a progression resolves to. Then analyse your notes to find out what your scale notes will be.

You might be totally confused though since Am doesn't have any sharps but the D has the F# which would suggest the key of G and as I said your analysis up to that point is correct. The notes are the notes of the G major scale.

If you're improvising over those chords you might use the notes of the G major scale but you wouldn't be playing in G major if the chord progression resolves to Am. You would be playing an A Dorian Mode. A Dorian is a relative mode of G major. It shares the same notes but uses A as the tonic. Hence if a progression uses all the notes of a major scale but resolves to somewhere other than the tonic then you're looking at a modal progression.
Si
#12
Quote by bangoodcharlote
It would appear so, but just by listening to the song, it is east to determine that it is definately not in G. The song is in Am.
But the D major chord? Wait, maybe the D chord is a bVII/V chord? Maybe only the ending is in A, and the part he asked about is in G?

Personally, I think its best to say the main riff is in G, but it modulates to A (minor or major? because you said it resolves on A major) at the end.

Also, if a progression is mostly in a minor key, but it resolves to the I chord of the parallel major (A major is the parallel major of A minor), is that progression described as in major or minor?
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[U]      //| \      |       |      [/U]
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#13
I'm with 20Tigers on this, I'd call it an A dorian progression.
#14
Thanks everyone I finally am starting to understand all this stuff. I actually understand what you told me tiger a year ago this was all way over my head. I wish I had stayed in my music theory class back in high school but my school wouldnt allow anyone to play a guitar for class. I had to play trumpet which i had no interest in so I dropped the theory class. Oh well better late then never. Thanks again for the help Ill probably have more questions soon.
#15
Quote by /-\liceNChains
my school wouldnt allow anyone to play a guitar for class.

What!? Not allowed to study music cause you play guitar?
Thats like saying guys aren't allowed to learn about sex cause they have cocks?
Si
#16
Not that it matters as far as analysis, but the main riff is Am G D, not Am D G

I agree, the tonal center sounds like Am dorian.

Also sometimes you can get clues as to what the guitarist is "thinking" (for example, is he thinking in A or G?) by the lead guitar licks. Check out those licks at the very end of the song, I think around 5:00 mark. At one point he bends an A up to a C. Bending the root (A in this case) up to the b3 is a very common thing to do (that was one of Page's favorite licks). If he was thinking in G instead that would translate into bending the 2 (A) up to the 4: not nearly as common.

Also no one's talked about the chorus (Dm C G), which is interesting because the tonal center is no longer A dorian, it's now D dorian. The D is now minor, not major like it was during the verse.

It's actually the same exact progression (1m b7 4) just moved to a different tonal center.
#17
TBH, I'm not sure if I want to consider it being in Am with modal interchange from the parallel Dorian mode or simply A Dorian. I'm fairly of leaning towards the latter though.

However, yeah TS, since the tonal center is not G, it's not in G anything. Good job though, it's kinda misleading.
#18
I think if you want to view it in terms of key as it relates to the Major - minor tonal system, you would have to say its in the key of Am with the D being a borrowed chord from the parallel Major.

Thinking modally, you could also see it as a "Dorian Progression".

I doubt Jerry Cantrell spent much time analyzing in this way. I would guess that he was thinking "riff in Am" (not necessarily the"key" of Am.... just a riff build around Am)
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