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  1. #46
    Member tenor02's Avatar
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    see bach and his http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Well_temperament system for why the intervals are the way the are. and you should also try looking at the Circle of 5th's. It'll help you learn the order of the scales, and their key signatures really quickly.

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    Can anyone tell me what kind of chords these are? If they even have a 'name' or function.

    f - a flat - d flat

    b - e flat (or d sharp?) - g sharp (or a flat?)

    b- e flat (or d sharp?) - f sharp (or g flat?)

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    Senior Member emiellucifuge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mueske View Post
    Can anyone tell me what kind of chords these are? If they even have a 'name' or function.

    f - a flat - d flat

    b - e flat (or d sharp?) - g sharp (or a flat?)

    b- e flat (or d sharp?) - f sharp (or g flat?)
    first is Db major

    e flat - g sharp - b would be an Eb augmented
    Alternatively spelling the chord as b - d sharp - a flat would change it to a B major 7th without the 5th.

    e flat - g flat - b = eb augmented
    b - d sharp - fsharp = B major

    Im afraid that function depends entirely upon the context in which the chords are found.

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    Senior Member Romantic Geek's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by emiellucifuge View Post
    first is Db major

    e flat - g sharp - b would be an Eb augmented
    Alternatively spelling the chord as b - d sharp - a flat would change it to a B major 7th without the 5th.
    Eb, G#, B is not augmented. I'm not sure where you're getting that from. Eb augmented would be Eb, G, B (and thus be G augmented and B augmented as well).

    Also, B, D#, Ab is not a B major 7 but rather a B diminshed seventh with a major third.

    From what it looks like to me, it's just a misspelled Ab minor (or G# minor) chord.
    G# B D# - or Ab - Cb - Eb
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  5. #50
    Senior Member andruini's Avatar
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    That first chord could also be considered a neapolitan sixth chord which is normally used to substitute the subdominant chord before an authentic cadence of V-I.
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    Senior Member emiellucifuge's Avatar
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    thank you for the corrections

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    Moderator Huilunsoittaja's Avatar
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    Trivia questions!

    1) Can you move from a V to a IV chord in traditional music?
    2) What can't be doubled in a V first inversion chord?
    3) Why is the cadential I 6/4 chord annotated as (I 6/4) (with parenthesis)?
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  8. #53
    Senior Member Argus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Huilunsoittaja View Post
    Trivia questions!

    1) Can you move from a V to a IV chord in traditional music?
    2) What can't be doubled in a V first inversion chord?
    3) Why is the cadential I 6/4 chord annotated as (I 6/4) (with parenthesis)?
    I'll have a go.

    1) Yes. Often in deceptive cadences.
    2) Any tone can be doubled. What the textbooks say shouldn't be doubled is another matter.
    3) The I six-four chord is very often used as a preparation to the V chord in cadences. The parentheses just show the chord is more or less an appogiature into the V.

    Here's my questions.

    What non-diatonic chords are available through use of the church modes?

    In a dimished seventh (or as I prefer incomplete dominiant ninth) chord what reason is there for flattening the seventh (ninth)? e.g the Bb in (A) C#, E, G, Bb.

    If you're in the key of Bb and there are the tones E, Gb, Bb and Db it is a (German) augmented sixth chord yet is enharmonically equivalent to an F# dom7 chord (F#, A#, C#, E) or Gb dom7. So is the chord in question better described as an augmented sixth chord or the V of the Neapolitan? And is there any difference other than spelling?

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    Senior Member Jeff N's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Huilunsoittaja
    2) What can't be doubled in a V first inversion chord?
    Quote Originally Posted by Argus
    2) Any tone can be doubled. What the textbooks say shouldn't be doubled is another matter.
    But if we're talking strict voice leading, then the 3rd of the V chord can't be doubled because it is the leading tone of the tonic and you never double the leading tone. Never! And it doesn't matter what inversion the V chord is in.

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    Moderator Huilunsoittaja's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff N. View Post
    But if we're talking strict voice leading, then the 3rd of the V chord can't be doubled because it is the leading tone of the tonic and you never double the leading tone. Never! And it doesn't matter what inversion the V chord is in.
    Yes.

    And as for the thing about Deceptive Cadences, that is the only time you can more from V to IV (it would be a IV6) in traditional music.
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  11. #56
    Senior Member Jeff N's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Argus
    In a dimished seventh (or as I prefer incomplete dominiant ninth) chord what reason is there for flattening the seventh (ninth)? e.g the Bb in (A) C#, E, G, Bb.
    Flattening the B would make it a fully diminished as opposed to half diminished (which would require a B natural). Is that what you're looking for?

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    Senior Member Argus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff N. View Post
    Flattening the B would make it a fully diminished as opposed to half diminished (which would require a B natural). Is that what you're looking for?
    No. I understand that but meant what is the threoretical reasoning behind the creation of the diminished seventh interval. Why is this aspect of chromatic change permissable in tonal harmony?

    I understand how it is formed in minor where the dimished seventh is diatonic (in d minor, C#, E, G, Bb are all in the scale with raised seventh tone C# and unraised sixth tone Bb) but in major the Bb is foreign. Is it a case of using tones from the parallel minor temporarily to artificially create the dim7 or is the Bb a kind of reverse leading tone downward into the A (the V root or the I fifth). Then there will be both leading tones into the D upward (C#) and the A downward (Bb).

  13. #58
    Senior Member Romantic Geek's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Huilunsoittaja View Post
    Trivia questions!

    1) Can you move from a V to a IV chord in traditional music?
    2) What can't be doubled in a V first inversion chord?
    3) Why is the cadential I 6/4 chord annotated as (I 6/4) (with parenthesis)?
    1. Yes, but very rarely, and only to IV6 as a deceptive cadence. Typically you see a V-IV progression in pop music.
    2. As Jeff mentioned, you can never double the leading tone of the key you're in, so the 3rd of the V chord. It doesn't matter what inversion. This is just general strict voice leading though, not the law
    3. This annotation is different depending on how you learn the chord. Since I 6/4 is rarely used outside of a cadential 6/4 process (the only real exception being a pedal tone embellishment I 5/3 - I 6/4 - I 5/3), some people annotate it as a V 6/4 when in reality, it is a I 6/4. They use V 6/4 - V 5/3 because of the strong presence of the dominant in the bass and thus, sounds like an incomplete upper pedal embellishment of the V chord (as I demonstrated with the I chord.) So, except for the one instance I mentioned (and maybe a few very very minor exceptions) I 6/4 is in parenthesis because it is really a dominant acting chord and thus should be treated as such.

    Quote Originally Posted by Argus View Post
    Here's my questions.

    What non-diatonic chords are available through use of the church modes?

    In a dimished seventh (or as I prefer incomplete dominiant ninth) chord what reason is there for flattening the seventh (ninth)? e.g the Bb in (A) C#, E, G, Bb.

    If you're in the key of Bb and there are the tones E, Gb, Bb and Db it is a (German) augmented sixth chord yet is enharmonically equivalent to an F# dom7 chord (F#, A#, C#, E) or Gb dom7. So is the chord in question better described as an augmented sixth chord or the V of the Neapolitan? And is there any difference other than spelling?
    For your question about the church modes, the answer is really none. The only exceptions are Bb when you're in the a non transposed mode (i.e. D dorian, E phyrgian, etc.) to avoid the tritone with F. There are a lot of specific rules regarding the appropriate use of the lowered scale degree 7 when writing 16th century counterpoint, including things like the outline of a scalar passage not outlining a augmented fourth, leaps of a tritone, etc. It's really complicated and I suggest you read more about 16th century counterpoint if you really want to know more. The other exception to this is Eb, and this only occurs if you are in a transposed church mode. Since transposed church modes occurred in what we now call F major, you could occasionally see an Eb in addition to the Bb. So G dorian, A phyrgian, etc...

    I'm not sure how the heck you're getting an incomplete dominant 9th as your preferred name for a diminished seventh chord. That's just completely odd and I'm not even sure how you can justify it...but I will leave that alone to address your question. The diminished seventh came into being because it was more dissonant than other seventh chords. Composers started using it to create tension within their music to satiate the need for tension and release in their works. The reason for lowering the seventh is to create an even stronger need to resolve downwards. If you notice, there are actually two tritones in a diminished seventh. This creates an incredible desire to resolve in their respective notes, even more so than the half diminished seventh, which appears naturally in a major key. I think you are dwelling too much on how specifically the lowered seventh fits in the picture of scales. Just remember, a diminished seventh is found naturally in the harmonic minor mode and that a fully diminished chord is most likely in the function of vii or an applied chord version of vii.

    And for your last question, you have hit on one of the most interesting aspects of the German augmented chord. Yes, it is the same as a dominant seventh chord. Mostly, you will analyze it as what it is, a German augmented 6th chord. This is characteristic by the Ger+6 - V 6/4 (or I 6/4, whatever you want to call it) - V 5/3 resolution of the chord. Do note that you cannot move directly from a German augmented sixth chord to a V in strict voice leading practices because of parallel fifths! But if you see the chord progression following this path, it will almost always be analyzed as a German augmented sixth chord. However, because of the wonderful property of being a dominant seventh chord, enharmonically, the German augmented sixth chord can be a pivot to a new key, that of the Neapolitan. You see it occasionally in Schubert's music and it becomes much more prominent as you dive further into the Romantic era. So, you could be in the key of C minor for instance, but immediately after the supposed German augmented sixth in C minor, there is a drastic shift to Db (major or minor)...there's a good chance the German augmented sixth was used as a pivot chord and thus can be reanalyzed as a V in the new key, a half-step up. This is why the German augmented sixth chord is so unique and cool!
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  14. #59
    Senior Member Argus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Romantic Geek View Post
    For your question about the church modes, the answer is really none. The only exceptions are Bb when you're in the a non transposed mode (i.e. D dorian, E phyrgian, etc.) to avoid the tritone with F. There are a lot of specific rules regarding the appropriate use of the lowered scale degree 7 when writing 16th century counterpoint, including things like the outline of a scalar passage not outlining a augmented fourth, leaps of a tritone, etc. It's really complicated and I suggest you read more about 16th century counterpoint if you really want to know more. The other exception to this is Eb, and this only occurs if you are in a transposed church mode. Since transposed church modes occurred in what we now call F major, you could occasionally see an Eb in addition to the Bb. So G dorian, A phyrgian, etc...
    I just remember reading Schoenberg's Harmonielehre, and it having a section on the use of church modes to generate different kinds of chords in different regions. eg a minor chord on the V in a major key. I haven't got a copy of the book at the moment so I can't look it up, but it was something I couldn't really understand the reasoning for, unless it's classed as a micro modulation. I need to pick up a copy of that book but it seems to be out of stock most places.

    I'm not sure how the heck you're getting an incomplete dominant 9th as your preferred name for a diminished seventh chord. That's just completely odd and I'm not even sure how you can justify it...but I will leave that alone to address your question. The diminished seventh came into being because it was more dissonant than other seventh chords. Composers started using it to create tension within their music to satiate the need for tension and release in their works. The reason for lowering the seventh is to create an even stronger need to resolve downwards. If you notice, there are actually two tritones in a diminished seventh. This creates an incredible desire to resolve in their respective notes, even more so than the half diminished seventh, which appears naturally in a major key. I think you are dwelling too much on how specifically the lowered seventh fits in the picture of scales. Just remember, a diminished seventh is found naturally in the harmonic minor mode and that a fully diminished chord is most likely in the function of vii or an applied chord version of vii.
    One of the first harmony books I read was Walter Piston's Harmony, and he often uses this term, and it just stick with me. Like you say it appears in the harmonic minor scale (in c minor: B, D, F, Ab), and I just treat it as a rootless G7b9, with the root interchangable with any tone a minor third away from the missing root. I can see it has many leading tones back to the I (B to C, Ab to G, F to E and, in minor, D to Eb), so I it is useful because of that strong chromatic pull. The problem is that the harmonic minor is not natural but an artistic creation to provide the leading tone, so if this liberty was allowable then why not others, which slowly lead to the dissolution of tonality altogether.

    And for your last question, you have hit on one of the most interesting aspects of the German augmented chord. Yes, it is the same as a dominant seventh chord. Mostly, you will analyze it as what it is, a German augmented 6th chord. This is characteristic by the Ger+6 - V 6/4 (or I 6/4, whatever you want to call it) - V 5/3 resolution of the chord. Do note that you cannot move directly from a German augmented sixth chord to a V in strict voice leading practices because of parallel fifths! But if you see the chord progression following this path, it will almost always be analyzed as a German augmented sixth chord. However, because of the wonderful property of being a dominant seventh chord, enharmonically, the German augmented sixth chord can be a pivot to a new key, that of the Neapolitan. You see it occasionally in Schubert's music and it becomes much more prominent as you dive further into the Romantic era. So, you could be in the key of C minor for instance, but immediately after the supposed German augmented sixth in C minor, there is a drastic shift to Db (major or minor)...there's a good chance the German augmented sixth was used as a pivot chord and thus can be reanalyzed as a V in the new key, a half-step up. This is why the German augmented sixth chord is so unique and cool!
    Yeah, I think it's the Wanderer Fantasy where Schubert goes mad with the augmented sixth, especially for modulations. I tend to analyse it like you say and how the composer has written it, unless there is a modulation. I've noticed a lot of times the composer will use German augmented sixth of the subdominant (in A major, D, F, G#, Bb) because of it's two leading tones (G# and Bb) to the tonic. Anyway, I think it's a cool chord.

    The late Romantic period seems to be the cut off point where I can't make full sense of what is going on harmonically. Strauss, Wagner, Debussy etc seems to be the cut off point. I can recognise the chords, the use of chromaticism and the use of added tones and suspensions and stuff, but I can't find a clear linear progression of keys and how the modulations fit together (and sometimes what key it's in at points). A lot of the time it seems like a series of unconnected harmonies with plenty of augmented and diminished chords for a mystical, restless sound. I can see voice leading is key to these harmonies fitting together and taken on their own they just don't fit.

    I haven't been using too much diatonicism in my writing at the minute anyway. I've been studying more the nature of the sounds, and what guys like Helmholtz, Partch, Cowell and Tenney wrote about in returning back to the mathematics of music and using it as a basis for new systems.

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    Senior Member Romantic Geek's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Argus View Post
    I just remember reading Schoenberg's Harmonielehre, and it having a section on the use of church modes to generate different kinds of chords in different regions. eg a minor chord on the V in a major key. I haven't got a copy of the book at the moment so I can't look it up, but it was something I couldn't really understand the reasoning for, unless it's classed as a micro modulation. I need to pick up a copy of that book but it seems to be out of stock most places.
    Well, this would be your first issue. There are no such things as "major" or "minor" keys in church modes. There are the modes: Ionian, Dorian, Phrygian, Lydian, Mixolydian, Aeolian. (Locrian is not a church mode). Ionian and Aeolian were late additions to the church modes, which we now know as major and minor modes respectively. You're probably thinking of Mixolydian, which would be rooted around G, but the "dominant" would be D-F-A, which is minor.

    Also, you might be wondering about raised sevenths and stuff like that too with church modes. You may hear it in recordings. Just know that these raisings (or sharp notes) were understood and not notated for a very long time. Now, editions of these pieces usually have an editorial mark where these raised sevenths would normally appear.



    One of the first harmony books I read was Walter Piston's Harmony, and he often uses this term, and it just stick with me. Like you say it appears in the harmonic minor scale (in c minor: B, D, F, Ab), and I just treat it as a rootless G7b9, with the root interchangable with any tone a minor third away from the missing root. I can see it has many leading tones back to the I (B to C, Ab to G, F to E and, in minor, D to Eb), so I it is useful because of that strong chromatic pull. The problem is that the harmonic minor is not natural but an artistic creation to provide the leading tone, so if this liberty was allowable then why not others, which slowly lead to the dissolution of tonality altogether.
    Well, yes, the harmonic minor is not natural, but neither is the melodic minor. These were adaptations from modal mixture. I can see the benefits of calling it an incomplete minor ninth now. Usually fully diminished chords serve a dominant-esque function. Either it is an expansion or a substitution for a dominant. However, I would never call that because when I think of incomplete chords (larger than a 7th) it is the 5th omitted, not the root. The root is the most essential part in analyzing chords, so I cannot ever personally analyze it as an incomplete minor ninth.



    Yeah, I think it's the Wanderer Fantasy where Schubert goes mad with the augmented sixth, especially for modulations. I tend to analyse it like you say and how the composer has written it, unless there is a modulation. I've noticed a lot of times the composer will use German augmented sixth of the subdominant (in A major, D, F, G#, Bb) because of it's two leading tones (G# and Bb) to the tonic. Anyway, I think it's a cool chord.

    The late Romantic period seems to be the cut off point where I can't make full sense of what is going on harmonically. Strauss, Wagner, Debussy etc seems to be the cut off point. I can recognise the chords, the use of chromaticism and the use of added tones and suspensions and stuff, but I can't find a clear linear progression of keys and how the modulations fit together (and sometimes what key it's in at points). A lot of the time it seems like a series of unconnected harmonies with plenty of augmented and diminished chords for a mystical, restless sound. I can see voice leading is key to these harmonies fitting together and taken on their own they just don't fit.

    I haven't been using too much diatonicism in my writing at the minute anyway. I've been studying more the nature of the sounds, and what guys like Helmholtz, Partch, Cowell and Tenney wrote about in returning back to the mathematics of music and using it as a basis for new systems.
    Well, that was one of the characteristics of the late Romantic era. You can always find some explanation for the harmonies used. However, it may get to some very complicated theoretical stuff, like transformational theory, which uses the idea of chords sliding without context within a progression. Developmental sections are the worst but you usually can come up with some backwards way to harmonically analyze it.

    Now Debussy, I wouldn't really call him a Romantic. His music is very much on the brink of 20th century techniques. For analyzing his music, you would have better luck using early 20th century analysis techniques. I think even set theory applies better for him than tonal theory. Some pieces, it is possible to analyze in tonal theory, but there are some other discoveries that might be made possible using set theory instead. Now that in itself is an advanced theory course. If you care to know about set theory, you need to pick up Joseph Straus' book "Introduction to Post-Tonal Theory." It is the set theory book.
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