Scales - do you change or can you change the scale midsong?

Chords, scales, harmony, melody, etc.
jancivil
KVRAF
23337 posts since 20 Oct, 2007 from not here

Post Wed Oct 27, 2021 2:36 pm

Azbest wrote:
Wed Oct 27, 2021 2:33 pm
Caine123 wrote:
Wed Oct 27, 2021 1:13 pm
Guys woah thats so massive infos here many many thx!!!! So it seems there is no real rule. So you can go feom a minor to major etc if it fits it fits i guess ;).

Is there some kind of overall overview what scales are emitting which emotions?

Like major is happy, minor for more meöpdic sadness etc? E.g. i struggle still to identify some kind of feeling for these, sure a happy chillout song cant be minor phrygian? A Hypnotized dark beat is mostly minor?
I stumbled upon an "emotional" description of every major and minor key, but it is from 18th century or something, so with modern tuning it's pretty much obsolete. Entertaining read tho.

https://wmich.edu/mus-theo/courses/keys.html
Schubart, a poet of the time. That's real poetic, but it doesn't mean anything.
The saddest thing I can think of in terms of affect imparted is in E Ionian.

jancivil
KVRAF
23337 posts since 20 Oct, 2007 from not here

Post Wed Oct 27, 2021 2:46 pm

donkey tugger wrote:
Wed Oct 06, 2021 6:08 am
Torchlight wrote:
Tue Oct 05, 2021 3:29 pm
I also learned to play keyboard just as scales, and have no deep understanding of theory.

From the smattering of knowledge I have picked up, as I understand it, what you are describing is a key change. Most pop songs will stay in the same scale. Classical music will generally switch keys (sonata form involves transitioning to a different key then transitioning back again).
Key changes.. :love:

Not just classical;

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S-rB0pHI9fU

Absolute genius songwriting.
This kind of thing is why I made the joke in that one thread, 'Mozart' is now going by 'McCartney'

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vurt
addled muppet weed
86427 posts since 26 Jan, 2003 from through the looking glass

Post Thu Oct 28, 2021 6:21 am

first comment i saw is a lie.
"went round there... names a few songs, and the cathedral with eleanor rigby sat outside". she's not near either cathedral :shrug:

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Hink
Rad Grandad
35018 posts since 6 Sep, 2003 from Downeast Maine

Post Thu Oct 28, 2021 6:27 am

vurt wrote:
Thu Oct 28, 2021 6:21 am
first comment i saw is a lie.
"went round there... names a few songs, and the cathedral with eleanor rigby sat outside". she's not near either cathedral :shrug:
first one I saw was I like how 54 years later they are talking about the same queen... :ud:
Words are a barrier to help-seeking and a motivator for making discrimination acceptable.
Mad Pride
If there is a direction to mankind, it ought to be a coming together Brian May

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vurt
addled muppet weed
86427 posts since 26 Jan, 2003 from through the looking glass

Post Thu Oct 28, 2021 6:28 am

Hink wrote:
Thu Oct 28, 2021 6:27 am
vurt wrote:
Thu Oct 28, 2021 6:21 am
first comment i saw is a lie.
"went round there... names a few songs, and the cathedral with eleanor rigby sat outside". she's not near either cathedral :shrug:
first one I saw was I like how 54 years later they are talking about the same queen... :ud:
shes immortal.

N__K
KVRist
97 posts since 26 Mar, 2017

Post Thu Oct 28, 2021 9:38 am

jancivil wrote:
Wed Oct 27, 2021 2:35 pm
N__K wrote:
Thu Oct 14, 2021 12:25 pm
jancivil wrote:
Thu Oct 14, 2021 6:32 am
N__K wrote:
Fri Oct 08, 2021 10:00 pm
shawshawraw wrote:
Fri Oct 08, 2021 12:47 pm
Learning from actual music is much much faster with ears in place ;)
I completely agree with the emphasized fact - but speaking from personal experience, attempting to train the wetware does not guarantee success (at least not in full) even if considerable amounts of one's lifetime are spent on the effort :D
Get your ear together or the rest of this is just jargon. There is music few of us will suss by ear alone but we aren't anywhere in the vicinity here.
Been at it for a few decades, still going :)
still have to check an 'analyser' to determine a diatonic scale, right
Even when my by-ear estimate is relatively close (like here: viewtopic.php?p=8231226#p8231226), yes, I do prefer to measure things.

It's the same as in other arts and crafts - measuring is a good way to gain more certainty about what one is perceiving. Human wetware is fallible, and I have reasons to suspect that mine is moreso than that of many others, so of course I'll use any means available to compensate for that :)



jancivil wrote:
Wed Oct 27, 2021 2:35 pm
[...] the person apt to create music is going to have to trust their ear implicitly.
Depends on situation, I'd say.

Personally, I trust the wetware (ears + brains + whatever else might be involved) when evaluating whether something sounds good/interesting/etc. to me. However, when something [EDIT: measureable, like pitch collection used in a piece] needs to be determined with [some] certainty, I will use measurements as well.



jancivil wrote:
Wed Oct 27, 2021 2:32 pm
N__K wrote:
Wed Oct 06, 2021 6:14 am
7-pitch scales can be seen as a middle ground between "too boring" and "too complex".
This should be seen as a 7 note scale having utterly no attributes per se, past having 7 pitches. Boring and complex are stuff in your head, it doesn't mean anything.
What I mean is: composing strictly within some common 7-pitch scales (such as major and minor) makes it easier to arrive at results which are likely to be perceived as musically pleasant by majority of humans. It is also a matter of mathematics: in a smaller number range, there are less possible combinations - thus, less complexity - to explore.

In other words, there are considerable differences between "stick to diatonic scales and common chords" and "12 degrees, any pitch-set on any of them is allowed" approaches, both in how much effort is required and what kind of results might be achieved.

jancivil
KVRAF
23337 posts since 20 Oct, 2007 from not here

Post Thu Oct 28, 2021 11:13 am

This is brilliant: https://youtu.be/OxO4nODCGD0
story of how the piccolo trumpet solo in Penny Lane came to be

N__K
KVRist
97 posts since 26 Mar, 2017

Post Thu Nov 04, 2021 7:16 am

Attached is a basic transcription of pitched elements in Carpenter Brut - Roller Mobster, which was the second example linked here: viewtopic.php?p=8231188#p8231188

Not every nuance is written down - and as always, I give no 100% accuracy guarantees. But what's there is enough to analyze at least the harmony:

Carpenter Brut - Roller Mobster - basic melody and harmony (MIDI export).zip
Carpenter Brut - Roller Mobster - basic melody and harmony (REAPER).zip

An overview of the arrangement:
Carpenter Brut - Roller Mobster - basic harmony and melody arrangement overview.png


As previously noted in this thread, in terms of 7-pitch scales this track is in G Natural Minor for most parts.

Bars 20, 24-25, 52-53 and 100-101 contain the pitch F#, which is not strictly part of G Natural Minor. Those parts can be thought of as being in G Harmonic Minor. The phenomenon there is "a major chord on 5th degree of minor scale".

Bars 50-53:
Carpenter Brut - Roller Mobster, bars 50-53.PNG

In other words, what would normally be a D minor chord (D,F,A) on 5th degree in G Natural Minor, is a D major chord (D,F#,A) there.
In strict sense, that can be thought of as borrowing the D chord from G Major or G Harmonic Minor. As stated by other posters previously, this "trick" is so common that oftentimes it is not noted as a separate phenomenon by musicians already familiar with it.


I think the concept of scale degrees ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Degree_(music) ) and roman numerals ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roman_num ... inor_scale ) is helpful in understanding this. It may seem complex and confusing at first glance, but the basic idea is to assign numbers to pitches of the scale, and indicate the chord via lowercase / uppercase letters [of roman numerals] and various additional signs. Lowercase means minor chord, uppercase means major, and there are various ways to specify other chord qualities.

A thing to note is that there are at least two common styles of writing the roman numerals.

Personally I prefer the "chromatic" style, in which - for example - the degrees and basic triads of Natural Minor scale would be marked up as "i, ii°, bIII, iv, v, bVI, bVII". The usage of "b" before some degrees hints at it being a chromatic markup, and many people would decode that unambiguously to mean Natural Minor, even if the scale is not specified.

In the other common style, used by some theory books such as Hewitt, Michael: Harmony for Computer Musicians and Benward & Saker: Music in Theory and Practice, there are no "b" signs in front of minor degrees and the key/scale is mentioned for clarity. So degrees of Natural Minor would be written in them as "i, ii, III, iv, v, VI, VII in Natural Minor".

Chromatic roman numeral markup is actually mentioned in "Harmony for Computer Musicians", but only in its later chapters. For some reason, markup styles that specify all 12 degrees seem to be thought of as "advanced" or "complex" by many teachers of traditional theory, while I personally see them as simpler and clearer - but to each their own ;)

To bring it back to core subject of this post, both of those books mention the "V in Harmonic Minor" case in their early chapters. The way it is used in Carpenter Brut - Roller Mobster would be [in chromatic romans] "iv - bVI - V", which fits well into traditional theoretical frameworks.



***


Bars 109 and 116 contain the pitch Db (or C#), which is an interval of tritone (6 semitones) to G. It is also outside of G Natural Minor scale, and is used here as a passing "spice", so to speak.

Carpenter Brut - Roller Mobster, bars 106-117.png

In this case, I wouldn't say that there is any theoretical "rule" or "function" to that Db being there, other than perhaps the idea of interval of 6 semitones being dissonant. The composer seems to have wanted a dissonant nuance at that point, and used a tritone above G to make it.
If fellow theory fans have a different view on it, I'd like to know :)
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teacue
KVRian
618 posts since 22 Jun, 2003 from Germany

Post Tue Nov 09, 2021 10:54 am

Caine123 wrote:
Tue Oct 05, 2021 12:24 pm
If you do chord progressions are these in the same scale still or do they change the scale?
Sometimes they change the scale (tonality).
This piece is an example of a constantly change of tonality (or scale)
Simple départ

The theme consist of 16 bars with 8 chords, each chord going over 2 bars.
Each chord has its own tonality:
F#6 - F# major scale
Fmaj7 - F major scale
E9 sus4 - E mixolydisch
C#9 sus4 - C# mixolydisch
Cmin 9 - C dorian
A (add9) - A major
C9 (#11 no3) - C lydian
Bb9 (#11) - Bb whole tone scale

As I wrote this theme, a long time ago, I just followed what I heard in my head and I was not trying to constantly change the tonality.
teacuemusic (Musicals)
youtube

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ValliSoftware
KVRist
180 posts since 11 May, 2014

Post Sat Dec 04, 2021 1:51 pm

Caine123 wrote:
Tue Oct 05, 2021 12:24 pm
Hey guys very noob question but i saw a video where someone showed how chords are or can be the same as scales.
So normally i pick a scale and know by ear and piano roll that im in key. Ok nice, but what about chord progressions?

Here comes the totally out of the box and crazy question from me.
If you do chord progressions are these in the same scale still or do they change the scale?

Be gentle please ;)
Great idea but it's a workflow killer.
Let's say you wanted to change at a certian bar, to experient with, that means you'd have to change all the tracks starting at a bar and up to the length of the bar of both your choosing.
Keep in mind, you'd have to set in place a a/b comparision as well, to see which sounds better.

Here's the killer part, if it doesn't sound good, you'll want to make further changes, but after a couple of bad choices, you just may give up on it because of not just the time it takes to make the changes, but you'd forget why you're making the changes.

So great idea but it's better if you learn how to program because music theory isn't get to get your great idea in your sequencer, programming will.

So here's a demo of me creating MIDIFX Scripts in Logic which will allow me choose from 166 chord formulas, 1584 scales in any of the 12 keys and all on-the-fly so a/b comparision is easy.
Of course I don't use audio because changes on-the-fly is easier with MIDI.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=leb85eCknn8

N__K
KVRist
97 posts since 26 Mar, 2017

Post Sun Dec 05, 2021 5:16 pm

ValliSoftware wrote:
Sat Dec 04, 2021 1:51 pm
Let's say you wanted to change at a certian bar, to experient with, that means you'd have to change all the tracks starting at a bar and up to the length of the bar of both your choosing.
Keep in mind, you'd have to set in place a a/b comparision as well, to see which sounds better.
That is easy to do via multitrack MIDI editing.

For example, in REAPER's MIDI Editor, one would enable Track List (Contents > Track List) and activate for editing all tracks on which one wants to move the MIDI notes (click the lock symbol to "unlocked" state, with hint showing "Track items are editable").

In that mode, it's possible to move MIDI notes of all those tracks at the same time. One can select specific note groups (via usual selection methods) or entire track-wide note rows (right-click on piano keys of piano roll) and move them into different pitches, thus changing scales, chords, voicings etc.
Multiple track-wide piano roll rows can be selected via holding Shift when right-clicking on piano keys.

Activating "Key Snap" allows to transpose in-scale (whatever scale is selected), so that chords change as one moves groups of MIDI notes.
Personally I prefer manual selections over automatic in-scale transposition, because much of what I do is not strictly limited to scales.

For A/B comparisons, one would make backups of edited sections in the arrangement - or, if using track-wide note row shifting, save a backup of the entire project and open it into another tab, making it possible to go back after trying out changes.

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ValliSoftware
KVRist
180 posts since 11 May, 2014

Post Sun Dec 05, 2021 9:51 pm

N__K wrote:
Sun Dec 05, 2021 5:16 pm
ValliSoftware wrote:
Sat Dec 04, 2021 1:51 pm
Let's say you wanted to change at a certian bar, to experient with, that means you'd have to change all the tracks starting at a bar and up to the length of the bar of both your choosing.
Keep in mind, you'd have to set in place a a/b comparision as well, to see which sounds better.
That is easy to do via multitrack MIDI editing.

For example, in REAPER's MIDI Editor, one would enable Track List (Contents > Track List) and activate for editing all tracks on which one wants to move the MIDI notes (click the lock symbol to "unlocked" state, with hint showing "Track items are editable").

In that mode, it's possible to move MIDI notes of all those tracks at the same time. One can select specific note groups (via usual selection methods) or entire track-wide note rows (right-click on piano keys of piano roll) and move them into different pitches, thus changing scales, chords, voicings etc.
Multiple track-wide piano roll rows can be selected via holding Shift when right-clicking on piano keys.

Activating "Key Snap" allows to transpose in-scale (whatever scale is selected), so that chords change as one moves groups of MIDI notes.
Personally I prefer manual selections over automatic in-scale transposition, because much of what I do is not strictly limited to scales.

For A/B comparisons, one would make backups of edited sections in the arrangement - or, if using track-wide note row shifting, save a backup of the entire project and open it into another tab, making it possible to go back after trying out changes.
Thanks for that info, that'll help Reaper users.
In my setup, I just move the Regions for the Roman Numerial, Chord Formula, Scales and Key, in real-time. I don't need to backup projects or move MIDI notes. The MIDIFX Scripts I wrote, make the MIDI note adjustments.

In this video, I can bypass my Roman Numberial setup and just enter chords directly on the Track Stack (a Logic thing) and the instruments don't know if the chords are coming from the Scripts that are creating the chords or chords I entered as a MIDI Region on a Track Stack

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bklYFvC-Zd0

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ValliSoftware
KVRist
180 posts since 11 May, 2014

Post Sun Dec 05, 2021 9:53 pm

N__K wrote:
Sun Dec 05, 2021 5:16 pm
For example, in REAPER's MIDI Editor, one would enable Track List (Contents > Track List) and activate for editing all tracks on which one wants to move the MIDI notes (click the lock symbol to "unlocked" state, with hint showing "Track items are editable").

In that mode, it's possible to move MIDI notes of all those tracks at the same time. One can select specific note groups (via usual selection methods) or entire track-wide note rows (right-click on piano keys of piano roll) and move them into different pitches, thus changing scales, chords, voicings etc.
Multiple track-wide piano roll rows can be selected via holding Shift when right-clicking on piano keys.

Activating "Key Snap" allows to transpose in-scale (whatever scale is selected), so that chords change as one moves groups of MIDI notes.
Personally I prefer manual selections over automatic in-scale transposition, because much of what I do is not strictly limited to scales.

For A/B comparisons, one would make backups of edited sections in the arrangement - or, if using track-wide note row shifting, save a backup of the entire project and open it into another tab, making it possible to go back after trying out changes.
Question, doesn't Reaper have scripting as well.

N__K
KVRist
97 posts since 26 Mar, 2017

Post Mon Dec 06, 2021 12:07 am

ValliSoftware wrote:
Sun Dec 05, 2021 9:53 pm
Question, doesn't Reaper have scripting as well.
It does, and possibilities are extensive - literally. If you're into programming, REAPER can be quite a playground :)

Personally I'm not a skilled programmer, and while my REAPER workflows already depend on my own scripts to some extent, I'm not yet very good at applying scripting to algorithmic composition.

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donkey tugger
Boss Lovin' DR
9252 posts since 15 Mar, 2002 from the grimness of yorkshire

Post Mon Dec 06, 2021 12:15 am

jancivil wrote:
Thu Oct 28, 2021 11:13 am
This is brilliant: https://youtu.be/OxO4nODCGD0
story of how the piccolo trumpet solo in Penny Lane came to be
£27! Still, probably a weeks wages in th'old days..

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