Two questions regarding extended harmonies

Chords, scales, harmony, melody, etc.
Functional
KVRist
453 posts since 26 Oct, 2011

Post Mon May 13, 2019 11:41 am

I'll try and keep it as simple as possible, but I'm afraid some of these questions I find hard to describe accurately, in particular the first.

1. Are there any guidelines for using extensions like 9, add9 or maj7 (etc)?

If I were to guess, the answer is mostly "no" aside from something like dominant seventh resolving to the I-chord which gives a stronger resolution to a piece. But besides that, how much am I missing if I claim that you either use them because you like their sound (for example, I really love minor chords with added ninth and major chords with maj7) or you can use them to harmonize a pre-existing melody and either fit the melody into typical I-IV-V chord structure or alternatively do the opposite and harmonize a melody with a progression that it doesn't beg it as obviously. Other than that, these extensions seem to be useful for spicing up arpeggiated melodies. What am I missing?

2. Say you have an arpeggio that plays first a D minor and then, in next measure, plays the same except it omits the third and plays a ninth in the sequence instead. Would you view both measures as Dmin9 simply or instead first measure as Dmin and the second as Dmin9? I can't really see any reason to "break" them up, but I'm guessing it's a context-dependent thing?

A particular example of this is the theme that Radiohead - A Wolf At The Door starts with: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OQeH9DtLtE0

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jancivil
KVRAF
18240 posts since 20 Oct, 2007 from No Location

Re: Two questions regarding extended harmonies

Post Mon May 13, 2019 1:45 pm

"Would you view both measures as Dmin9 simply or instead first measure as Dmin and the second as Dmin9?"

Why do the names matter? (rhetorical question) It's stuff on D minor.

"I'm guessing it's a context-dependent thing?"

Music tends to be like that.

You make choices because that's the idea. If there's a conventional use, note what was done and draw an inference as to a principle.
Add2 on a minor chord? What's the musical idea? What if the 2 or 9 is the melody note.

Stevie Wonder 'Cause We've Ended as Lovers', practically every change in it does an appoggiatura (non-chord tone on the beat which step-resolves); it starts with 9-8, keeps doing that over changes, and the first phrase turns around with a 4-3 harmonizing 9-8 in the melody (in the original Stevie Wonder Presents Syreerta, subsequently the 4-3 is it because now Jeff Beck owns it).
Once the tune proper starts, 9-8 over i; 9-8 then #4-3 over bVI; 9-8 over iv, then a passing figure to 4-3 on I (major)
So the whole pull of the song is that sort of poignant 9-8 or a reflection of it.
So it's not just for color.

As to some generalized principle, it's all context, it's all whatever you want it to be.

Functional
KVRist
453 posts since 26 Oct, 2011

Re: Two questions regarding extended harmonies

Post Mon May 13, 2019 2:39 pm

"Why do the names matter? (rhetorical question) It's stuff on D minor."

Well, for V7 it seems to matter so I figured there ought to be a reason why you never see a ii(add9) for example. Or is the V7 truly so distinct from the function of V? And yeah this is in context of functional harmony but honestly I see extended harmonies mentioned extremely rarely outside of books that introduce you to them or dusty discussions on the corners of internet where someone, presumably after smoking a jazz cigarette, has to say "yeah man just use seventh chords if you want that jazzy vibe"

Can't you truly ruin a piece by, say, taking the seventh or the ninth out from a chord aside from perhaps voice-leading related reasons?

Now as for why Dmin or Dmin(add2) might matter, I honestly don't know, but again, I see so few discussions of these extended harmonies that I have no clue about the nomenclature

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jancivil
KVRAF
18240 posts since 20 Oct, 2007 from No Location

Re: Two questions regarding extended harmonies

Post Mon May 13, 2019 4:19 pm

In context, "Would you view both measures as Dmin9 simply or instead..." I don't get why it matters, if you understand what happens and can describe it... do you have to write something up? You seem to understand the principle, instead of simply Dm9 which implies a seventh...

Function matters. You mentioned a Dm and then a Dm with an addition, I don't know. It's a i in the video?

If you have to analyze it for class, you would talk maybe about, <is it really 'a chord of the 9th', or is it a suspension or an appoggiatura.>. If it's ii, it's ii, it's subdominant function. If it's i, it's i. :shrug:
In jazz which is interested in a lot of movement <i is the new ii> is a thing.

"why you never see a ii(add9)" - where do you expect to see it but don't? google add9 chord and it goes for page after page.
You may be more likely to run into it in a jazz analysis.

here's Bb(add9) for ukelele

Image

typically saying, eg., Dm(add2) instead, any add2 means the 2 is right next to the 3rd. Neither is obscure usage.

https://riffspot.com/chords/ukulele/type/add9/

Functional
KVRist
453 posts since 26 Oct, 2011

Re: Two questions regarding extended harmonies

Post Mon May 13, 2019 4:45 pm

jancivil wrote:
Mon May 13, 2019 4:19 pm
In context, "Would you view both measures as Dmin9 simply or instead..." I don't get why it matters, if you understand what happens and can describe it... do you have to write something up?
Just a class and the context is mere analysis, with writing chords down being the task at hand and then analyzing their sequence through their functions. But it's not a thing I "have to get right or else"

Regarding the extended harmonies, I meant that whenever chord progressions in particular are discussed, it's fairly rare to see extended chords mentioned. Hell, I meet something like bVII more often

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jancivil
KVRAF
18240 posts since 20 Oct, 2007 from No Location

Re: Two questions regarding extended harmonies

Post Mon May 13, 2019 4:54 pm

sorry I just think ukelele is funny
add9 chords are a thing, apparently ;)

In classical analysis you won't tend to see it, it's a convention from jazz practice meaning a 9th but no 7th. People in jazz will say 'ii', but chord charts never use it.

Academically... bit of a nightmare

if you saw it and had to name 'D F A E' ' in C, 'ii9' is sufficient; if it's 1st inversion, F A D E, you figure all the notes to the bass. ii7/6/3, which is problematic. It's practically never done because of the potential confusion of '7'. If it's E F A D, ii7/4/2. Experienced people can handle this but this isn't really part of the curriculum. :D

I mean the teacher writes that on the board and you're supposed to part-write that... wtf. I don't recall seeing it but I may have. 42 years

Functional
KVRist
453 posts since 26 Oct, 2011

Re: Two questions regarding extended harmonies

Post Mon May 13, 2019 5:28 pm

ukulele might be funny but I know a very serious person who plays ukulele very passionately and is also known as "killjoy", so I daren't to make fun of the ukulele

also I think the teacher is well aware of my limitations since these are private lessons, I'm going to doubt that I'll have to part-write anything at all since the primary point is piano lessons and secondary is music theory and she knows damn well that I ain't gonna be part-writing anything with those rigid rules for my own benefit. The primary things I want to learn is to play better and also more about modal chord progressions (or whatever they're called if not progressions) but for now, we're on functional harmony

Ultimate goal? Be able to compose chromatically and less restricted to time signatures aside from first measures of a bar. I can do a lot of what I want already but there's more barriers to be breached especially now that I'm knee-deep in dance theater business (and those folks often avoid anything ordinary-sounding like the plague itself, oftentimes they'd rather have silence)

About the add9 chords, they sound tad more pleasant for obvious reasons than add2 chords (although in the context I can see obviously why rather call it add2 or even sus2 I guess). But it's less about add9 in particular, even just 9 or 11 chords are pretty rare to see in descriptions of progressions. So I take it that, as long as you don't do anything too weird with voicings, they don't affect the functions all that much?

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jancivil
KVRAF
18240 posts since 20 Oct, 2007 from No Location

Re: Two questions regarding extended harmonies

Post Tue May 14, 2019 3:55 am

not making fun of the ukelele, it's a funny word and it was funny to google add9 and get a whole lot of ukelele

sus2 cannot be used for add2, it means there is no 3rd.

"for obvious reasons", you mean your ear is that conservative? min add2 is lovely, poignant and used all the time.


don't take this personally but you have a number of quite naive notions where you're ready to be conclusive.
extensions in jazz are just common parlance.

"Modal chord progressions" isn't really a thing, btw. Don't know where you received that notion. There is so much bullshit theory on the internet, and this includes jazzer notions like that. It's a confusion of two things. One of them isn't modal at all.

Other than one should limit the usage to avoid ruining the mode by a naive handling of the tritone resulting in dominant-tonic to the nominal major key related to the mode.
Dorian, i to IV7, if you aren't establishing Dorian well for the ear, tends to be ii to V7 for the tonic found at its 7th degree.
D Dorian, Dm to G7, ii V7 of C.

To retain the character of a mode, you would use two or three chords if at all. i to IV (careful with the 7th, which gives a harmony doing nothing to promote the mood anyway) in Dorian, maybe VII, but one should question why;
I to VII in Mixolydian, eg., D to C vamp, maybe a IV, the why being kind of like a turnaround because of the strength of IV - I.
II to i for Phrygian. These moves promote the character of the mode and more is less really.

Here's the thing: "Chord Progressions" is at heart a property of functional tonal music. Functional indicates the dominant-tonic V-I paradigm, which doesn't work in modal and is death to modes. You could say V-I function exists in 'Ionian' but you should really call that what it is, major, because function.
Ionian modal would mean thinking differently than tonal to have any meaning. Such as 7 as not necessarily creating this pressing need to go to 8.
Indian Classical Music, Bilaval Thaat-derived raga, 7 may be the secondary plateau (samvadi) after 3 (as vadi), you can just sit there and luxuriate.
Watermelon in Easter Hay by Zappa, IV - I vamp, 7 occurs eventually but is not a real feature of the contour, it's not about that. It has a certain poignancy, it's not about leading tone.

Functional
KVRist
453 posts since 26 Oct, 2011

Re: Two questions regarding extended harmonies

Post Tue May 14, 2019 7:50 am

jancivil wrote:
Tue May 14, 2019 3:55 am
"Modal chord progressions" isn't really a thing, btw. Don't know where you received that notion.
Nowhere in particular, which is why I said "or whatever they're called". I think I've heard only "sequence". But regardless, your fairly brief explanation is actually kind of helpful. One question I do have about modes is how you then switch between them and is it sort of like, modulation? The explanations I've seen often refer to the notion of just finding two with enough common tones that "stich them together" but honestly it's tad vague. Or does the notion of modulation apply here too? I feel like there's like three different concepts at play: modal mixture (the whole "stitch two modes together" thing), changing modes and modulation, all of them being separate. Does modulation only apply to functional harmony and/or is it synonymous with changing modes?

tapper mike
KVRAF
5005 posts since 20 Jan, 2008

Re: Two questions regarding extended harmonies

Post Wed May 15, 2019 6:21 am

Functional wrote:
Mon May 13, 2019 11:41 am
I'll try and keep it as simple as possible, but I'm afraid some of these questions I find hard to describe accurately, in particular the first.

1. Are there any guidelines for using extensions like 9, add9 or maj7 (etc)?
Yes. but context is everything. It's not about mixing and matching. One plays in an appropriate method to match the style.

I realize I may be recovering a lot of ground already covered by others.

If your melody is constructed like Charlie Parker stick to simple 1-3-7 comping chords. Parker thinks in terms of the chord. All notes are either in concordance or in motion to a chord tone. This type of chormaticism works against early bebop functionality. The same can be said for Western Swing. This is a "style" of bebop but it's not modal jazz.

There shouldn't be but there are different treatments on modality. Early church classical, Modal Jazz and Rock. Modal Jazz stems from Miles Davis. MD didn't want to focus on the familiarity of the chord progression. He specifically chose Bill Evans because Evans style utilized "rootless chords" He would also colapse the chord in irregular fashions (see Amy Nolte's dissertation) When you remove the root from the chord they have more of an ambiguous nature. The focus isn't on the chord progression. The focus is on the melody. The melody is constructed from the character of mode.

"Modern Jazz" and Post Modern Jazz is where you will see and hear chord progressions utilizing common extensions such as 9,11,13 and their various alterations. This is the Joe Pass, Herb Ellis and Kenny Burrell (although Burrell playing may be closer associated with his mentor Count Basie)
Pass states that all major chords can be extended naturally Meaning any C chord in the key of C can be extended to a Major 6,7,9,11 and major 13 as well any extended chord can be reduced to it's primary form. But don't think of them that way. Simply think of them as being major, minor or dominant regardless of the extension. There is quite a bit of harmonic motion in this style of jazz.
Rick Beato does a great dissertation on the playing style of Joe Pass ,well worth watching a few times over.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9EURr3oJxVQ&t=766s

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jancivil
KVRAF
18240 posts since 20 Oct, 2007 from No Location

Re: Two questions regarding extended harmonies

Post Fri May 17, 2019 7:47 am

for the broader readership and knowledge base...


upon reflection I don't much like what's in parentheses in this sentence:
jancivil wrote:
Tue May 14, 2019 3:55 am
{Dorian}

To retain the character of a mode, you would use two or three chords if at all. i to IV (careful with the 7th, which gives a harmony doing nothing to promote the mood anyway)
I don't say why, it's just an assertion. What I want to say is:

Ironically, the two character tones of Dorian are in the one harmony, but instead of imparting any aroma of the mode, it almost through itself points away, because of the strength of Dominant 7th; particularly in a culture which is steeped in tonality. I say almost per se, but if the way is [let's go with D Dorian]: the F is established as that clear minor 3 to D, we've created that mood and that expectation; and the B is also felt as the neighbor with a certain relationship to C, and to A, and first of all this is all a relationship with D; emphasizing F elsewhere in the environment doesn't present that problem I assert.
But a block chord and your notion is of chords while you're taking chords as the source of material, bzzzztt, WRONG.

And I want to be as clear as I can as per 'Progression'. Progress, the verb, means goes somewhere - forward - and is directional. IE: a drive, a drive to dominant - tonic. A move like I - (b)VII in Mixolydian, or i - IV for Dorian, this two or three chords orbit (by necessity because the only function we can have points away as indicated), statically around our home I or i.

So I can imagine the reaction, 'but that's still chord progressions', but afaic 'modal chord progressions' is a big red herring.

So, we'll see things like "modal chords", a good example is to notice "the So What chord", from the two chords Bill Evans does as the response to the call of the melody; 'SO_WHAT'; this *is* a property of the Dorian mode of the thing.
And, it Goes Nowhere, static.


E A D G B, low to high. Minor 7th with an add4, or we may notice the quartal nature.
(I think of it as quartal with a major third on top. A favorite, when I used to write from chords.)
That's ii of D Dorian, moving parallel to i.
Then it moves to F, ii - i some more again.

The meaning I want to convey here is that I (i) is god; think of <a decoration of> or <a color overlay on> i.
In that, the i is everpresent.

Confer: C to D, static, a vamp on C Lydian, it's like two shades of the one thing, rather than progression.
You can pedal the C all day long, we're not going anywhere.

So What, yeah, you can say it goes somewhere but at F we only get a copy of what we did at D. Nothing functions to F, there is no modulation. Chord Progression it isn't.

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