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Proper 4-part harmony software

Chords, scales, harmony, melody, etc.

Moderator: Moderators (Main)

KVRist
 
411 posts since 2 Nov, 2006

Postby pinki; Tue Dec 04, 2012 3:33 am

http://www.harmonybuilder.com/professional.html

Just found this, Mac and PC and really does do proper harmony taking into account the rules of voice-leading and parallels. A rare beast - Harmony Improvisator is the only other one I know and it seems moth-balled and the demo is useless. Harmony Navigator does not do voice leading and is a different thing really. So Harmony Builder is a superb way to begin a composition with proper harmonic motion.
Last edited by pinki on Tue Dec 04, 2012 4:43 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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KVRAF
 
3424 posts since 19 Jan, 2008

Postby tapper mike; Tue Dec 04, 2012 8:10 am

Blah, blah, blah.

http://pgmusic.com

Band in a Box

Because music is also about style.
KVRAF
 
3846 posts since 28 Apr, 2006

Postby memyselfandus; Tue Dec 04, 2012 8:27 am

why Java?

edit

thought it was a vst plugin..
KVRist
 
411 posts since 2 Nov, 2006

Postby pinki; Tue Dec 04, 2012 2:19 pm

Yes Java is dull...

Band in a Box does not do 4-part Bach chorales with full voice leading and observation of hidden octaves. (Why the blah blah?)
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KVRian
 
1481 posts since 13 Nov, 2005, from St. Paul

Postby jopy; Tue Dec 04, 2012 3:30 pm

the blah blah could be because mike seemingly devalues classical music and its training methods. just an impression i've gathered over time, but i think others might back me up in this observation.
KVRist
 
411 posts since 2 Nov, 2006

Postby pinki; Tue Dec 04, 2012 4:43 pm

Oh.... I see...thanks. I think that's a discussion I'd rather not get into :wink: but Mike ...no need to be like that, it's all music!
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KVRer
 
4 posts since 7 Dec, 2012, from United States

Postby Len911; Fri Dec 07, 2012 5:14 am

Yes I have it. They have a new update that adds more time signatures and a few other useful features. The update installers seem to be down currently. I agree it is unique. I've not had a formal education in harmony theory, so it's very useful for chord progressions and for arranging. Other programs may or may not always be correct, but with this program as a checker or as a tool you're going in with eyes wide open and not blind so to speak. It's not something you would use for making a finished recording, it is a tool for composition and you would then enter your results in other composition software and/or daw. The java is used for the palette of sounds, much like a gm midi module. It's really not just about classical music. Here is a quote from the manual and illustrates one of the reasons to follow the rules primarily, " The purpose is to avoid losing the individuality of the voices, as well as to reduce the somewhat "hollow" sound produced by octaves and fifths, which duplicate the 1st and 2nd overtones of the lower note. A chord containing an octave and/or fifth will sound less rich than a chord containing a third, for example. Therefore, successive chords containing adjacent octaves and/or fifths are considered an unacceptable impoverishment."
Imo, the octaves and fifths are bound to affect even the sound of a pop recording and give you fits and frustrations in the recording stage, if you have them. That's just one rule. Of course if you are expertly skilled enough and fast enough, you might not need this type of program. For people like me though it is really a godsend.
KVRian
 
1097 posts since 10 Oct, 2004

Postby JumpingJackFlash; Fri Dec 07, 2012 8:25 am

I'm rather sceptical about this. If it's just checking parallel fifths and octaves then that's no bid deal, Sibelius has been doing it for years. But what else does it do? Does it check doublings, intervals, range, the handling of dissonances and unessential notes..? If so, it would enable hundreds of students around the world to cheat in their music exams ;) - But as I said, I doubt that it can do all that.

Although it is true that the Bach Chorale style of music has many "rules" which can be programmed into a computer, that's not all it is, it also takes a human mind to be creative and interesting within the given rules. The human also knows what rules to break and when.

If anyone would be willing to put in a simple Bach Chorale (or similar) and see how it analyses it, I would be very interested in what it says.
Unfamiliar words can be looked up in my Glossary of musical terms.
Also check out my Introduction to Music Theory.
KVRer
 
4 posts since 7 Dec, 2012, from United States

Postby Len911; Fri Dec 07, 2012 2:35 pm

Jack, the best thing is to go to the website. There are various versions, I have the professional, yes they have educational versions also. There are videos describing the features and how it operates and also the manuals that have a chapter on the rule checkers and some exceptions explained etc. It's not a gimmick program, it's more of a tool. You don't just input something for analysis, in a nutshell, it's a guide that leads you through making a chord progression, harmonize a melody, by narrowing the choice and voicings of chords,using the checkers that you select, you the human still has to decide if an exception should be made or not, it just shows with various lines and colors what rules might be broken, and the manual lists conditions why and where exceptions can be made. One of the videos demonstrates how you might take a classic melody and reharmonize it.
Rule checking:

-hidden octaves and fifths
-unison errors
-7th and 5th preparations
-7th resolution
-leading tone resolution
-diminished 5th resolution
-overlapping voices
-range restriction (can modify in range selection panel
-interval limits (octave, 10th between tenor and bass
-repeated notes
-voice crossing


hth
KVRist
 
411 posts since 2 Nov, 2006

Postby pinki; Sat Dec 08, 2012 7:52 am

Yes it is unique- I have it now and it is the only program I think that does this: It deals with texture!

Bach chorales are very important for understanding texture.
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KVRAF
 
8625 posts since 20 Oct, 2007

Postby jancivil; Tue Dec 25, 2012 1:52 pm

even insofar as detecting rules broken, getting to where you can do that by yourself is a process by which you are improving your mental acumen for the task, that this approach, leaning on a machine, will tend to obviate.

in music often the slower road is the richer road.

"demonstrates how you might take a classic melody and reharmonize it" what feedback does it give you about what you did? vs. what you get in a harmony class by a great teacher.

"Harmony Builder is a superb way to begin a composition with proper harmonic motion"
Frankly if one needs this in order to do that one is not really ready to do that. That whole post sounds like you're doing a commercial.
User avatar
KVRAF
 
4554 posts since 11 Feb, 2005, from Bordeaux France

Postby stanlea; Tue Dec 25, 2012 11:15 pm

jancivil, you're well know for your opinions about harmony software, composition helpers, and so on. I really understand what you say and why, but I feel it's like someone complaining against the invention of the bike.
Of course, no software will replace a good trained ear, a clever mind and so on. In my view, harmony and composition software are just helpers. They can't make a good composer, but they can help to understand things. They can also give bad habits. In brief, they are tools, no more.
You can't always get what you waaaant...
KVRist
 
411 posts since 2 Nov, 2006

Postby pinki; Fri Dec 28, 2012 7:47 am

jancivil wrote: Frankly if one needs this in order to do that one is not really ready to do that. That whole post sounds like you're doing a commercial.


I know how to do 4 part-voice leading and harmony, and it's laborious and this makes it less laborious. I did the hard work years ago!

If you want to whip yourself that's up to you! :)

As stanlea says, it's a tool, nothing more.
KVRian
 
1086 posts since 12 Sep, 2008, from Your basement

Postby Ogg Vorbis; Fri Dec 28, 2012 8:49 am

Auto generate bach chorals? Have people been pining away for a way to incorporate four-part chorales with proper voice-leading in their productions? Does this occur quite often? :o
User avatar
KVRAF
 
4554 posts since 11 Feb, 2005, from Bordeaux France

Postby stanlea; Fri Dec 28, 2012 9:28 am

Ogg Vorbis wrote:Auto generate bach chorals? Have people been pining away for a way to incorporate four-part chorales with proper voice-leading in their productions? Does this occur quite often? :o


It's just a way to call a 4 voice part following "classical" rules, not necessary sounding like JS Bach himself !

I would add in this range

for midi :
http://www.capella.de/us/

for audio :
http://www.zplane.de/products/plugins/vielklang

Very nice products.
You can't always get what you waaaant...
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