Ok, so I'm reading about Cadences on Wikipedia, and I come to the Half Cadence. This is a Cadence ending on the V chord, and it is considered the weakest Cadence because it sounds so uncompleted.

Then, I come to the part about the Phrygian Half Cadence, which is saying that a Half Cadence from the IV chord to the V chord in a minor key is called a Phrygian Half Cadence, because the movement in the outer voices represents the structure of the Phrygian Mode. I don't understand what they're saying. I'm assuming because of the Phrygian structure being represented that a flat 9 features in there somewhere, but I can't understand what they mean because I'm not sure what they mean when they say outer voices. If someone could tell me what degrees of a chord count as the outer voices and how the IV to V progression in a minor key represents the Phrygian structure, that'd be awesome.
sig goes here
Ok, to avoid an epical and confusing post, I'll assume that chord degrees arent a problem (you do know what an IV, V and I chords are, right?).

First of, in every mode theres a special modal note. To outline a mode in a progression, one or more chords needs to contain that modal note.

Lets take E Phrygian Dominant as an example (it seems fitting as we're talking about minor keys). The modal note is the same as the normal Phrygian mode, which is F.

So to make a phrygian cadence we also need the Dminor chord (as in A minor, Dm is our iv chord and E7 is our V chord). Dm contains the notes D F A. A is our modal note. So playing this Dm before the E7 chord will outline the E phrygian Dominant mode.

And about this voice stuff. A voice is just a melodic line that when combined with other melodic lines makes a chord. So instead of seeing the backing as Dm-Emaj, we see one melodic line of D-E another melodic line played straight on top the previous melodic line of F-G# and other melodic line playing A-B (actually most arrangers would arrange the chords better than that so theres better voice leading). So it would look something like this:
F-G#
D-E
A-B
Whats confusing is that it doesnt matter which voice is the outer voice (the highest voice), just as long as it sort of follows the contrapunctual laws (you can google counterpoint yourself, its way out of my scope to teach)
``````        ,
|\
[U]        | |                     [/U]
[U]        |/     .-.              [/U]
[U]       /|_     `-’       |      [/U]
[U]      //| \      |       |      [/U]
[U]     | \|_ |     |     .-|      [/U]
*-|-*    (_)     `-’
|
L.``````
Last edited by demonofthenight at Aug 5, 2008,
Yeah I think I got all of that. So basically the notes in the two chords are degrees of the Phrygian scale, and the reason they outline the Phrygian mode and not any other mode is because the ending chord's root is E, the root of the Phrygian mode. Right?
sig goes here
Quote by Skater901
Yeah I think I got all of that. So basically the notes in the two chords are degrees of the Phrygian scale, and the reason they outline the Phrygian mode and not any other mode is because the ending chord's root is E, the root of the Phrygian mode. Right?
More because the Dm contains the modal note of E phrygian, but yeah.
``````        ,
|\
[U]        | |                     [/U]
[U]        |/     .-.              [/U]
[U]       /|_     `-’       |      [/U]
[U]      //| \      |       |      [/U]
[U]     | \|_ |     |     .-|      [/U]
*-|-*    (_)     `-’
|
L.``````
Phrygian half cadence: a half cadence from IV to V in minor, so named because the motion in the outer voices resembles the structure of the Phrygian mode.

I'm thinking differently towards this quote.

The iv chord of E Phrygian is A minor
The V chord of E Phrygian is Bm7b5

The V chord contains the F note which is the modal (Phrygian) note.
can you explain the modal note thing in more detail please
Quote by farcry
can you explain the modal note thing in more detail please

Each mode has a note or notes that define it and make it unique to any other mode. Albeit some may sound very similar.

Note characteristics of some modes.

Dorian: major 6
Phrygian: b2
Lydian: #4
Mixolydian: major 3rd and b7
Locrian: b3, b5, b7
Quote by mdc
Phrygian half cadence: a half cadence from IV to V in minor, so named because the motion in the outer voices resembles the structure of the Phrygian mode.

I'm thinking differently towards this quote.

The iv chord of E Phrygian is A minor
The V chord of E Phrygian is Bm7b5

The V chord contains the F note which is the modal (Phrygian) note.

Would anyone care to voice their opinion on this^?. I wasn't disagreeing with you, Demon. I'm not too hot on Cadences.
Quote by mdc
Each mode has a note or notes that define it and make it unique to any other mode. Albeit some may sound very similar.

Note characteristics of some modes.

Dorian: major 6
Phrygian: b2
Lydian: #4
Mixolydian: major 3rd and b7
Locrian: b3, b5, b7

So a modal note is just a note altered from the aeolian/ionian mode on the same note? ie, E major scale to E lydian scale involves #4, E minor to E phrygian involves b2?

Quote:
Originally Posted by mdc
Phrygian half cadence: a half cadence from IV to V in minor, so named because the motion in the outer voices resembles the structure of the Phrygian mode.

I'm thinking differently towards this quote.

The iv chord of E Phrygian is A minor
The V chord of E Phrygian is Bm7b5

The V chord contains the F note which is the modal (Phrygian) note.

Would anyone care to voice their opinion on this^?. I wasn't disagreeing with you, Demon. I'm not too hot on Cadences.

I have busted out my trusty copy of Tonal Harmony, and here's what it says: "The Phrygian Half Cadence is a special name given to the iv^6 [trying to show inversion there] - V half cadence in minor. The name refers to a cadence found the period of modal polyphony (before 1600), but it does not imply that the music is actually in the Phrygian mode."

So you can put this cadence in A minor, and it would go Dm (first inversion) - E.
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Last edited by gwitersnamps at Aug 11, 2008,
Quote by gwitersnamps
So a modal note is just a note altered from the aeolian/ionian mode on the same note? ie, E major scale to E lydian scale involves #4, E minor to E phrygian involves b2?

Yup you got it, tho rather than saying "same note", it would be better referred to as "tonic"

Quote by gwitersnamps
I have busted out my trusty copy of Tonal Harmony, and here's what it says

So you can put this cadence in A minor, and it would go Dm (first inversion) - E.

Thank you very much for answering that for me , no one esle seemed to bother
^hey, I voiced my opinion even before you. gwitersnamps book even agreed with me .
Quote by gwitersnamps
So a modal note is just a note altered from the aeolian/ionian mode on the same note? ie, E major scale to E lydian scale involves #4, E minor to E phrygian involves b2?
Yeah, that would get you the modal note. Thats probably how I would get the modal note from a mode.
Technically its actually the note that isnt used in any other mode. The note that makes the mode unique.
Quote by gwitersnamps
I have busted out my trusty copy of Tonal Harmony, and here's what it says: "The Phrygian Half Cadence is a special name given to the iv^6 [trying to show inversion there] - V half cadence in minor. The name refers to a cadence found the period of modal polyphony (before 1600), but it does not imply that the music is actually in the Phrygian mode."

So you can put this cadence in A minor, and it would go Dm (first inversion) - E.
Yay, thats what I said. I feel slightly smarter.
So if I've understood this correctly, the reason it's called the Phrygian half cadence is because the F in the Dm chord is the modal note of the Phrygian mode, and the tonic of the V chord is E which is the tonic of the Phrygian mode of the root scale, so you get E F G and B, outlining the Phrygian mode. I hope that's not too confusing.
sig goes here
I don't know but have read the posts and need to work through this myself so here goes...

Phrygian Cadence = iv⁶- v in minor.

Minor = 1 2 b3 4 5 b6 b7

iv = 4 b6 1; iv⁶ = b6 1 4
v = 5 b7 2

Outer voices = highest and lowest voices = b6 4 and 5 2

The inversion means the lowest voice movement is b6 to 5. This is movement down a minor 2nd to the root of the v chord. The 5 is the lowest note and the root of the final chord so I will relate everything to this note.

Looking at the highest voice now...
The inversion also means the highest voice is the 4 which moves to the 2, a movement down a minor third interval. The 4 is a minor 7th interval above the 5. The final note in the upper voice is the 2 which is a perfect fifth above the 5.

So if I'm looking for a mode with a minor 2nd degree a perfect 5th degree and a minor 7th degree. Only one fits the Phrygian Mode 1 b2 b3 4 5 b6 b7.

Cool I got it now.
Si
Simplified version:
A harmonic minor (we're using dominant V chord here) = E-E in A harmonic minor, aka, Phrygian Dominant. Since it's a half cadence, we hear a strong tendency towards E, giving the E relevance a a tonal center even if it's not the tonic. Do I have that right?