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A very basic question about modal transposition

Chords, scales, harmony, melody, etc.

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KVRist
 
88 posts since 29 Mar, 2009

Postby seacouch; Thu Feb 14, 2013 2:01 pm

fmr wrote:
jancivil wrote:
there is no usage of modes in the tonal environment in modern terms.

Bullshit. You have a very narrow perspective, it seems.


+1
User avatar
KVRAF
 
4477 posts since 24 May, 2002, from Bobo-dioulasso\BF__Geneva/CH
 

Postby Krakatau; Fri Feb 15, 2013 12:16 am

:smack:

i'm afraid it will take time for me to read and grab the goods in this topic ...

:phew:

you're making me feel suddently old you kids...

:)
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KVRAF
 
4477 posts since 24 May, 2002, from Bobo-dioulasso\BF__Geneva/CH
 

Postby Krakatau; Fri Feb 15, 2013 12:26 am

More on topic, does this notion of modal transposition being usually applies in practice in other chromatic scals like melodic, harmonic or arabic minor for instance ?

And if it is the case woulds anyone have some .mp3 examples to share ?

:)

.. i'll be really happy !!!!!!!!!!!
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fmr
KVRAF
 
2758 posts since 16 Mar, 2003, from Porto - Portugal

Postby fmr; Fri Feb 15, 2013 1:07 am

Krakatau wrote:More on topic, does this notion of modal transposition being usually applies in practice in other chromatic scals like melodic, harmonic or arabic minor for instance ?

If you are talking about the different forms of the minor mode (natural, harmonic, melodic minor), it of course is used in any key. Actually, the minor mode is just ONE. Natural is the remainings of the old D mode with the B flat as was the common practice in the already mantioned "musica ficta", and without a leading tone (instead it uses what we call a sub-tonic). Harmonic is a natural consequence of the tonality, where the V chord needs to have the leading tone to fulfill it "dominant" function. Melodic is a form used many times by Bach (and because of that also called "Bach scale"), where it uses the vi degree also raised to avoid the melodic interval of augmented second while preserving the leading tone in ascending form, but uses both degres lowered when descending, since the leading tone is not necessary when going downwards.
These variants of the minor mode lead to a much greater variety of this mode, when compared to the major, including the possibility of using it in some ambiguous tonal environment, mixing tonality and modality, which gives it a very "colourful" and flexible nature.

Krakatau wrote: And if it is the case woulds anyone have some .mp3 examples to share ?

:)

.. i'll be really happy !!!!!!!!!!!

Don't know about the arabic (it's an exotic mode, like the gypsy), but you can find examples of natural minor passages and melodic minor passages in the works of Bach, notably in the Preludes and Fugues (Well Temepered Clavier), or the organ works, specially in the chorales, choral preludes and variations. You will find these pieces easily on line, both in notation form as well as played. Note that the pieces are not in "melodic minor" or "natural minor" (there are no such things), they are simply in a minor key. These are only variants of the minor mode, and can all coexist within the same piece.
Last edited by fmr on Fri Feb 15, 2013 5:06 am, edited 2 times in total.
Fernando (FMR)
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KVRAF
 
4477 posts since 24 May, 2002, from Bobo-dioulasso\BF__Geneva/CH
 

Postby Krakatau; Fri Feb 15, 2013 1:37 am

fmr wrote:Don't know about the arabic (it's an exotic mode, like the gypsy), but you can find examples of natural minor passages and melodic minor passages in the works of Bach, notably in the Preludes and Fugues (Well Temepered Clavier), or the organ works, specially in the chorales. You will find these pieces easily on line, both in notation form as well as played. Note that the pieces are not in "melodic minor" or "natural minor" (there are no such things), they are simply in a minor key. These are only variants of the minor mode, and can all coexist within the same piece.



Well this is still a bit exceeding me yet, let me apologize

:oops:

...i might recognize though, typical feel induced by a melodic minor scale through some passage of the nutcracker suite
(especially one that inspired a passage of the original Fantazia from Walt Disney, in where a very shy fish rising through hidden parts of the water)

Emotionnally this kind of musical passage shines of a complex but intense feelings of despair and exultation simultaneously...i'm hoping i might sensitize my 2 years old daughter to it and i think this cartoon is a real gem if you want to open the mind of your kids, including it numerous synesthetic approaches !!!
KVRian
 
1140 posts since 10 Oct, 2004

Postby JumpingJackFlash; Fri Feb 15, 2013 2:55 pm

Harry_HH wrote:I was wishing maybe concentration of these books I have not (time to) read.


Very well, here's something to be going on with (though obviously it's not intended to be exhaustive):

The Ecclesiastical Modes

Although the origins of the modal system go back to the ancient Greeks, the concept of mode as a function of scale and final originated in the 10th and 11th centuries, when an attempt was made to organise the ("Gregorian") chants of the Roman church according to the categories of ancient Greek music theory. This classification and categorisation was done, in part, to aid the memorisation of the melodies.

Specifically, antiphons (short syllabic chants) were compared with psalm tones (fixed melodies to which Psalm verses were sung) to see how the interval was filled in between their ending note (the finalis or "final", similar to what we now call the tonic) and the pitch corresponding to the psalm tone's reciting tone (the "tuba" or "tenor", similar to what we now call the dominant), which was normally a fifth above.

There are four ways a fifth can be filled in using the diatonic pitch set and its arrangement of tones (T) and semitones (S):

1) TSTT
e.g. the white notes descending from A to D

2) STTT
e.g. the white notes descending from B to E

3) TTTS
e.g. the white notes descending from C to F

4) TTST
e.g. the white notes descending from D to G

The ending notes, D,E,F,G were called "the four finals" and each was named according to their Greek ordinal numbers; protus, deuterus, tritus and tetrardus respectively. (It must be remembered however that the notes are only an abstract convenience and do not actually refer to literal pitches).

The range of the chants was also considered.
Those with the final at the bottom of their range (usually extending to an octave above it) were said to be "authentic", while those that extended lower than their finals so that the final occurred in the middle of their range (usually from a fourth below to a fifth above), were called "plagal".

Thus, each of the four finals governed two modes:
1. protus authenticus TSTTTST
2. protus plagalis TSTTSTT
3. deuterus authenticus STTTSTT
4. deuterus plagalis STTSTTT
5. tritus authenticus TTTSTTS
6. tritus plagalis TTSTTTS
7. tetrardus authenticus TTSTTST
8. tetrardus plagalis TSTTTST (NB: This has the same order of intervals as protus authenticus, but they have different finals).

Originally, these 8 modes were reckoned as 4 pairs (there is a fable that St. Ambrose made the authentic modes in the 4th century and St. Gregory made the plagal ones in the 6th century).

With authentic modes, the tuba/tenor lies a fifth above the final. However, where the tuba/tenor would fall on B, it was later changed to C.
With plagal modes, the tuba/tenor lies a third below that of its authentic counterpart.

Later theorists assigned the modes different names adopted from late Greek sources (although the Greek usage was different and the nomenclature was technically incorrect):

Code: Select all
                   Range  Dominant  Final
1. Dorian           D-D       A       D
2. Hypodorian       A-A       F       D
3. Phrygian         E-E       C       E
4. Hypophrygian     B-B       A       E
5. Lydian           F-F       C       F
6. Hypolydian       C-C       A       F
7. Mixolydian       G-G       D       G
8. Hypomixolydian   D-D       C       G

The Greek prefix "hypo" is roughly synonymous with the word "plagal".

After this system had been perfected, it began to serve not only as a description of existing music, but as a prescriptive guide to new compositions. (Though modal theory was not extended to the analysis of polyphonic music until the late 15th century where the tenor line was usually used as the primary reference point).

Centuries later (around 1547), a humanist called Glareanus recognised 4 additional modes which came to be knows as Ionian and Aeolian, and their plagal forms. The Ionian mode has its final on C, and the Aeolian on A (the Locrian and Hypolocrian modes, with B as a final, barely existed).

Ionian and Aeolian modes were not necessary however and existed in practice long before they were given specific names. Singers often used a Bb to avoid the augmented fourth from F to B, even though this wasn't always specified in the notation. Since the 11th century, the use of the Lydian mode with a Bb provided the "Ionian" mode (which corresponds to what we now call "major"), and the Dorian mode with Bb provided the "Aeolian" mode (which corresponds to what we now call "minor").

With the rise of harmony, a leading-note became a necessity, and the "Ionian Mode" effectively became one of the favourite modes. - Both this and the "Aeolian mode" were more suitable for harmony.

In addition, more notes began to be chromatically altered. In the Mixolydian mode for example, the 7th was often sharpened to provide a leading-note (thus making it identical to the Ionian Mode). The ancient modes gradually disappeared until only the "major" and "minor" modes remained.

Between around 1450 and 1650, there was a gradual change from "modal" to "tonal" thinking, the latter based on triadic harmony and the diatonic circle of fifths.
Unfamiliar words can be looked up in my Glossary of musical terms.
Also check out my Introduction to Music Theory.
User avatar
fmr
KVRAF
 
2758 posts since 16 Mar, 2003, from Porto - Portugal

Postby fmr; Fri Feb 15, 2013 4:08 pm

:clap: :clap: :clap: Very good explanation. I would just avoid to use the terms Ionian and Aeolian, because composers never used them (only some theorists, like Glareanus and Zarlino), and because, as you recognized yourself, actually the D Mode (Protus/Dorian) and the F Mode (Lydian/Tritus), as well as the G Mode (Tetrardus/Mixolydian) were the ones that played that role, because of the "musica ficta" pactice of lowering the B and raising the vii on the cadences (that's also why the first flat is the B, and the first sharp is the F).

Another point. IMO, it was the appearance of the opera, with it's "new style" of accompanied melody and a very vertical and simpler approach to composition, that played a major role in the transition from modality to tonality (Monteverdi is a good example, because he started writing his madrigal books in the old style (prima pratica) but then changed completely to the new style, which he called "seconda pratica". It was also Monteverdi that composed some of the first operas (L'Incoronazione di Poppea is from 1642). It was in the opera that all the inovations took place, and where the new tonal style and vertical writing of accompanied melody took place. For understanding how this evolved the Monteverdi Madrigal Books are a great example, as I said.

When Bach died (in 1750) no one was working with modes anymore. Actually, when Bach was in the top of his career (around 1720) he and his contrapuntal style were already regarded as "outdated" although he was deeply respected as an organist and improviser, and master of the then "old school" of polyphony (which he was, but done firmly in the modern tonal system, although sometimes twisted and tortured to fit the strict rules of the old style, which even so were disregarded in some moments). Bach is also very good (and perhaps more accessible) to actually understand how the old modes evolved into the new major/minor system, because he was still composing both vertically as well as horizontally (something no one else was doing as he was at that time), and because he revisited many times the old choral melodies, many of which were composed in a time where modality was still predominant (in the early XVI century, between 1500/1520).
Fernando (FMR)
KVRAF
 
9263 posts since 20 Oct, 2007

Postby jancivil; Mon Apr 22, 2013 1:32 am

fmr wrote:
jancivil wrote:if you want to demonstrate how modal usage works in 'the tonal environment' in modern terms, feel free. In fact, if you want to demonstrate it in the ancient church usage, feel free.

OK, this will be my last post directly addessed to you. It's sad that you felt the need to "pull out for the epaulettes" as we say around here (perhaps there's an expression in english that means the same, but I don't know it). I also received my honours during my student life, yet I don't call on them to justify anything.
This is pure ad hominem argumentation.
fmr wrote:Regarding your "challenge" above, I don't know what you mean with "tonal environment in modern terms".
Demonstrate how modal usage works in modern terms "in the tonal environment". I suppose english is a second language for you.
fmr wrote: http://legacy.earlham.edu/~tobeyfo/musi ... ales2.html
It's a melody in the mode of E, yet he harmonized it tonally. And you have the well knows "Scarborough Fair" canticle. And you have, in more modern composers, modal passages in Mahler works, yet the harmony is always there (the dense, late romantic harmony, but still tonal).
So you can't do it. There is actually an analysis that shows how it moves very quickly to C Major! C major is not 'the E mode'. You absolutely proved my point there.
fmr wrote:Regarding the "musica ficta" ("ficta" as in ficticious, in case there are confusion about the latin term - because they were singing differently from what was notated), it's a practice, not a system. That practice consisted in raising or lowering some notes in some chords (basically for creating leading tones or avoiding the augmented fourth between F and B).
EXACTLY MY POINT again. The practice of musica ficta, flatting the Aug 4th makes F lydian effectively into F major.

There was NOT chordal thinking during this time, there were certain desired concordances and the tritone was certainly not one of them. Effectively that avoidance amounts to an avoidance of what we today call Lydian mode.

I understand that at that time this was considered modal, and I am painfully aware of the centuries involved in this dull kind of music from having to make detailed distinctions of it in essays for a grade.
(I simply mention that to say, this is so not news to me. There is nothing impressive per se about academia to me.)

HOWEVER we are not talking to people about medieval practice or theory. To you, even so much as denoting a row of tones as 'Locrian' is oh so very WRONG. Who cares? People today in metal bands use locrian for the mood of it. That's how modes are approached since everyone went so very wrong, as you have it, in the nineteenth century.

We were in this argument because you made useless points in order to do no more than gainsay me as if you showed your own badge by this act. Your argumentation isn't good, note well. Now given a chance to go on with this music history lesson, you consistently make a distinction between modal practice and 'tonality', while previously you went to cloud this with the nonsense clause "[modality] in the tonal environment".
KVRAF
 
9263 posts since 20 Oct, 2007

Postby jancivil; Mon Apr 22, 2013 2:01 am

seacouch wrote:
fmr wrote:
jancivil wrote:
there is no usage of modes in the tonal environment in modern terms.

Bullshit. You have a very narrow perspective, it seems.


+1
What a silly statement. I am deliberately narrowing this down to modern terms in the sentence you're addressing.


Somehow characterizing 'modern' usage of terms, ie., since the nineteenth century, as absolutely misconceived is a broad perspective?

Not getting that the thrust in jazz out of Indian music, *is* modal, that there is a whole world out there that does music as I have described it, and that is widely considered - I would venture to assert predominantly the meaning {modal} today - is not extremely narrow in focus?

- that sticking with this wholly academic area is evidence of a broad mind... that in fact can't really so much as address the following question?
Last edited by jancivil on Mon Apr 22, 2013 2:18 am, edited 2 times in total.
KVRAF
 
9263 posts since 20 Oct, 2007

Postby jancivil; Mon Apr 22, 2013 2:10 am

Krakatau wrote:More on topic, does this notion of modal transposition being usually applies in practice in other chromatic scals like melodic, harmonic or arabic minor for instance ?
yes.

http://www.prosonic-studios.com/Learnin ... cales.aspx
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KVRAF
 
4477 posts since 24 May, 2002, from Bobo-dioulasso\BF__Geneva/CH
 

Postby Krakatau; Mon Apr 22, 2013 3:57 am

jancivil wrote:
Krakatau wrote:More on topic, does this notion of modal transposition being usually applies in practice in other chromatic scals like melodic, harmonic or arabic minor for instance ?
yes.

http://www.prosonic-studios.com/Learnin ... cales.aspx


Thank you, mate !

Totally relevant and very useful didactically....
KVRist
 
436 posts since 29 Dec, 2007

Postby thebaggytrouseredone; Mon Apr 22, 2013 4:34 am

A lot of what is being said here relates to classical and church theory. Modes were more used in folk music and not used in classical music.

Along comes Jazz and harmony, modern harmony, changes. In Jazz modes relate to chords and chords relate to modes, for example,

C Major - C major 7
D Doruian - D Minor 7
E Phrygian - E minor 7 flat 9
F Lydian - F Major 7 augmented 4
G Mixolydian - G Dominant 7
A Aeolian - A Minor 7 flat 6
B Locrian - B half diminished 7

The modes are played as scales C - C, B - B, D - D etc. I always use modes for writing riffs and chord sequences, each mode has a colour and a mood, but for some harmonies I would borrow notes, for eg, in the B Locrian mode I would borrow an F# from the B Phryian mode and harmonise as such so I can get a B minor chord instead of a diminished. Just do what sounds good and that's all that matters.
simon
KVRian
 
1140 posts since 10 Oct, 2004

Postby JumpingJackFlash; Mon Apr 22, 2013 6:04 am

thebaggytrouseredone wrote:Modes were more used in folk music and not used in classical music.


You have to be very careful about your definition of "classical music" here, otherwise your statement is not true.

See my post above for more about the history of the modes.
Unfamiliar words can be looked up in my Glossary of musical terms.
Also check out my Introduction to Music Theory.
KVRist
 
436 posts since 29 Dec, 2007

Postby thebaggytrouseredone; Mon Apr 22, 2013 6:13 am

JumpingJackFlash wrote:
thebaggytrouseredone wrote:Modes were more used in folk music and not used in classical music.


You have to be very careful about your definition of "classical music" here, otherwise your statement is not true.

See my post above for more about the history of the modes.


Music such as Classical Era and Baroque Era used cadences I - V, I - IV, V - I, VI - I, II - VI - I etc. they also used pivot chords to allow key changes. Scales used most were the major scale, Harmonic Minor and Melodic Minor, at east this is what I was taught when when doing my Grade 8 classical theory and Grade 8 Jazz / Pop theory grades.
simon
KVRian
 
1140 posts since 10 Oct, 2004

Postby JumpingJackFlash; Mon Apr 22, 2013 9:00 am

thebaggytrouseredone wrote:
JumpingJackFlash wrote:
thebaggytrouseredone wrote:Modes were more used in folk music and not used in classical music.

You have to be very careful about your definition of "classical music" here, otherwise your statement is not true.

Music such as Classical Era and Baroque Era ...


You're talking about Classical music (note the capital C), i.e. music from roughly 1750-1820.

And in that case you're right, it didn't generally use modes.

However, many people use the term "classical music" to refer not only to this (relatively short) period, but also including what you might call the Medieval, Renaissance and Romantic periods, and even some 20th century composers such as the Second Viennese School. - In other words, as a very broad term for pretty much any highbrow music not in one of the "popular" styles. A lot of music from some of these other periods definitely do use modes.

As I said, you have to be careful with your definition.
Unfamiliar words can be looked up in my Glossary of musical terms.
Also check out my Introduction to Music Theory.
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