Help me get out of this chord progression

Discussion in 'Music Theory, Lessons & Techniques' started by thevisi0nary, Jun 15, 2016.

  1. bostjan

    bostjan MicroMetal Contributor

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    No.

    In the English speaking world, "I" refers to the tonic tonality. You cannot have a progression without a tonic, since the tonic is defined as the resolution chord of the progression. "I", in the English speaking world, does not refer the root note of the relative major scale of the key of the piece.

    For example, in D dorian, the progression Dm - Am - B° - Dm is notated by English speaking musicians as i - iv - v - i, not as II - VI - III - VII - II.

    I don't disagree with your approach, but what you call things does not jive with traditional nomenclature.
     
  2. redstone

    redstone SS.org Regular

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    Uh? It doesn't match with the rest of the world then. Harmonic progressions don't necessarily have a resolution chord, and can't even follow the 7 degrees system derived from the major scale, it's very naive to think that way.
     
  3. bostjan

    bostjan MicroMetal Contributor

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    It's just different notation, as I said, standardized in the USA/Canada/England/Australia/New Zealand/etc. It's not naive, just different.

    For the record, your notation is not used in "the rest of the world." Perhaps a great deal of places, but there are many different forms of notation in different cultures.

    It's perfectly fine for us not to see eye-to-eye due to notation differences, considering we are not trained in theory using the same nomenclature, but to say one kind of notation is naive, is quite short-sighted.
     
  4. redstone

    redstone SS.org Regular

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    Okay enough bull..... You don't make any sense. Really.

    You can't call A- F D- E- an I- VI IV- V-.

    The numbers correspond to the degrees of the major scale. If they didn't, no one could tell what your numbers mean. And since they do, "I" must stick to its place on the scale. Therefore it cannot be the resolution of all progressions. A- F D- E- is a VI IV II III. VI is the resolution. That's all.
     
  5. bostjan

    bostjan MicroMetal Contributor

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    Except that it is called a "i VI iv v" progression. Read some English language music theory books, or even the wikipedia english language chord progression page. Anything introductory, again, not saying you don't understand how to do a chord progression, just that we use different nomenclature in English. If you want to stick with French language notation, but post on an English speaking forum, then you are simply going to confuse some/most people. And when you start explaining how they are wrong because you use a completely different notation system that makes perfect sense to you and no sense at all to most everyone else, and furthermore refuse to make any effort to understand standardized notation for the language in which the discussion is held, you are not going to get a positive response.

    We might as well have an argument over whether it's "Germany" or "Allemagne."
     
  6. j3ps3

    j3ps3 SS.org Regular

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    Just curious as I'm trying to wrap my head more around these things. How would you analyze these chords:

    CmMaj7 - Gm7 - C7 - Fmaj7
    Fm7 - Bb7 - Ebmaj7 - Ebm7
    Ab7 - Dbmaj7 - Dm7(b5) - G7

    bostjan can chime in too.. So far I think you're right as I alsl think that there has to be I in a progression. Trying to decide which one of you is making more sense :lol:
     
  7. bostjan

    bostjan MicroMetal Contributor

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    Wow! That's a nifty progression...it looks like what I would call a 12-bar blues progression with some interesting substitutions, but the rhythm is not written out.

    The first chord is a chord quality substitution of the tonic: i(maj 7)
    The second chord in the progression is the five: v7
    The third chord in the progression is another chord quality substitution on the tonic: I7
    The fourth chord in the progression is a kind of straightforward IVmaj7
    Then there is a sort of backdoor progression: IVmaj7 - iv7 - bVII7 - bIIImaj7 - bii7 - bVI7. I forget the name of this, but I've seen it more than once in jazz-blues progressions.
    The next passage is a tritone substitution over a ii - V - I turnaround as: bIImaj7 - ii7b5 - V7
    Then back to the tonic.

    That's my guess.
     
  8. j3ps3

    j3ps3 SS.org Regular

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    [​IMG]

    Hopefully you don't cheat and google this now :lol:
     
  9. bostjan

    bostjan MicroMetal Contributor

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    Well, at least I was correct about it being a 12-bar blues progression. What sort of commentary were you wanting?
     
  10. j3ps3

    j3ps3 SS.org Regular

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    My teacher said that he would write it down like this:

    C melodic minor: i
    F major: ii-V-I
    Eb major: ii-V-I
    Db major: ii-V-I
    C minor: ii-V-i
     
  11. Winspear

    Winspear Tom Winspear

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    Sounds to me like you are debating Fixed Do vs Moveable Do - there is quite a lot of reading to do on that but bostjan is certainly correct with what he is saying.

    Gotta question about the progressions without an I though - why is that a problem? I'm sure I've heard lots of such progressions. Sure they typically resolve eventually but often as the first chord of the next section, and I wouldn't say they have to.
     
  12. bostjan

    bostjan MicroMetal Contributor

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    If the next chord is the tonic, then the tonic is in the chord progression.

    Is it the case that you subdivide a progression into smaller pieces and the smaller pieces don't have a tonic in them? How else would one define the tonic? There are some serialist pieces with no tonal center at all, though...

    Looking at the progression as ii V I modulating keys is a cool way to look at it. I do think, being that it is clearly based off 12 bar blues, that the passage of F chords is, sonically, a play off of the IV / iv substitution, which is extremely common in that style and in that bar position of the progression, especially since it does not follow the rhythm of a typical ii V I turnaround...
     
  13. Mr. Big Noodles

    Mr. Big Noodles Theory God

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    This is pretty accurate, both in terms of traditional harmonic analysis as well as contrapuntal practice. I'll expand a little. What we essentially have is i∆ iiø7 V7 (Cm∆ Dø7 G7) with some other stuff in between. So, i∆ ... iiø7 V7 where the "..." is merely a bunch of chords that expand that space. That "...," in this case, is a sequence which may be expressed as a linear intervallic pattern, or simply a "LIP." More on that when we get to my analysis.

    I did a Schenkerian-style reduction that shows how the melody interacts with the harmony. I'm trying to put together a primer on Schenkerian analysis in this thread, so maybe you can refer to it if this is confusing (which it probably is to most people). I'll try to be clear, but let me know if you get lost.

    Let me be up front with this: not a lot of jazz has been analyzed with Schenkerian methods (although Fred Sturm did a video in which he explains the compositional process behind one of his arrangements, and he uses reduction similar to Schenkerian analysis, though I am reasonably sure that he himself has not done any Schenker studies). Schenkerian theory as Heinrich Schenker conceived does not apply to most jazz, especially post-war jazz, because the musical grammar and syntax are completely different from the Classical tonal repertoire that he was dealing with (Mozart, Haydn, Beethoven, Schubert). Here, I have attempted to adapt his method to deal with this Miles Davis tune. Whereas Schenkerian theory supposes that there is always a linear scalar descent to the tonic (and David Neumeyer accounts for linear ascents), jazz, particularly bebop, rarely has that. In Solar, there is a structural tonic pitch in the melody at the beginning, then a LIP, and then a turnaround. So rather than going 5 4 3 2 1 (where 1 is tonic) or 3 2 1, it's just 1 {LIP} {turnaround} and back to 1. I hope my graphs make this easy to see.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    The first graph is an analytic overlay, which shows where I am grabbing the notes for my reductive analysis in the second graph.

    The LIP is of the 7 10 variety, meaning that the active pitches of the sequence are chordal sevenths (so B♭ over C7) falling to chordal tenths (A over Fmaj7). It's a circle of fifths sequence, to boot. This is prominently displayed in the middle of the second graph. By the way, those diagonal lines show that the structural melodic tone is prepared over a (less structural) harmony, but they really belong to a more structural harmony. Less structural notes do not have stems, structural ones do have stems. (The most structural notes have hollow noteheads.) If we reduced out the less structural notes, we would collapse those melodic tones to their more structurally related harmonies, and the next level of reduction would look like this:

    [​IMG]

    Some neat things about this head: notice that the LIP supports a chromatic linear descent. LIPs typically prolong a single harmonic function, or "Stufe" (the Schenkerian term). In this case, it appears to be predominant: it starts on IV (or with ii V I in IV, which itself prolongs IV) and ends on ♭II (which is the Neapolitan chord, a traditional predominant function). My graph does not emphasize this relationship, but I could stem things a little differently and slur them to the iiø7 at the turnaround if I wanted to make some sort of claim about the LIP being a long predominant area. You can see that the LIP is iterated three times: once on F, once on E♭, and once on D♭; the interval pattern is repeating down a major second each time.

    The notation for the turnaround is a little inconsistent. Remember that I said that stemmed notes with hollow noteheads are the most structural? The D in the bass has a hollow notehead, a stem, a flag, and is attached to a big beam. This is a notation that I stole from my teacher to indicated that it is the structural predominant, that it is subservient to the dominant (G7) that follows right after. I don't really know how to treat that D in the melody, though. When the notehead is solid and it has a flagged stem, it means that it is a structural neighbor. However, with a hollow notehead... well, I haven't seen that anywhere else before. It does not mean the same thing as the same notation in the bass. What I am trying to say is that the D in the turnaround is the (octave-displaced) structural neighbor to the C at the top of the head. It is structural, because it is part of the turnaround, but because there is not a structural descent preparing that 2, it is not functioning in a way that works with normal Schenkerian notation. I'm flying by the seat of my pants, and until I come up with a better way, I hope that this is clear.

    Part of the issue in analyzing jazz is that there are no real cadences to speak of, at least not at the beginning of tunes. I hesitate to apply the structural predominant and dominant labels (PD and D) to the turnaround, because those chords do not conclude the phrase, but are a prefix to the repeat of the head. One could make the argument that the entire head is just a tonic prolongation ("T" with no "PD D T" following it). I have, however, left the beams open on the turnaround to show that there is continuation, theoretically into infinity (at which point the soloists would have a chance to take however many choruses they wish). After an indeterminate number of repetitions of the changes, the tune could be capped with a cadence, in which case we would finally have a true PD D T progression to close off the open-ended tonic prolongation of the rest of the tune.
     
  14. redstone

    redstone SS.org Regular

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    Except that your wikipedia source shows I'm right.


    The progression, represented in Roman numeral analysis, is: I–vi–IV–V. For example, in C major: C Am F G.


    Do you understand that it has nothing to do with an Am F Dm Em? Would it help if it starts in C ? Cm Ab Fm Gm. Can't be called a I VI IV V. Because it is a VI IV II III.

    So please stop. I am right, anywhere in the world. The choice of numbers is a pure matter of notation. It's meant to decrease the alterations, based on a major scale system.
     
  15. bostjan

    bostjan MicroMetal Contributor

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    Don't have an aneurysm.

    This thread could have died a quiet death, but you have not allowed it. I've stated my case, and you've rejected it. You read my link and obviously didn't care to try to understand it. Not every song or chord progression is based on a major scale. If you think it is, then, well, I don't care, just go on believing that, go on arguing with people and getting super worked up and stressed out about it...

    Or...relax, have a beer, play some guitar, and move on with your life.

    :cheers:
     
  16. redstone

    redstone SS.org Regular

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    What, by this thread you mean the bull.... you said? I gave you one chance to move on, but you insisted, right?

    I don't say all progressions are based on the major scale, I said it's the NOTATION. You don't understand what I say, but hey, if you can't recognize a minor 3rd when you hear one, it's pretty normal.

    And for the sake of saving those who could believe what you say :

    In music, Roman numeral analysis involves the use of Roman numerals to represent chords. In this context, Roman numerals (I, II, III, IV, ...) typically denote scale degrees (first, second, third, fourth, ...). When a Roman numeral is used to represent a chord, it is meant to indicate the scale degree corresponding to its root note, which is the note on which the chord is built. For instance, III is the Roman numeral which denotes either the third degree of a scale, or the chord built on that degree.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roman_numeral_analysis
     
  17. bostjan

    bostjan MicroMetal Contributor

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    Read the link you provided, and then tell me if my notation is not covered right there in black and white.
     

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