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Originally Posted by draft

Please move if needed.

Well,I can't do that. I'm a member like you. But you could start the thread there, was my suggestion. smile

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Originally Posted by draft
A few measures in the refrain section shown above, go to the F - C - F,
but back to the Dm - A - Dm.

So can you say the song switch's keys between Dm and F ?

Yes, this refrain obviously switches between D harmonic minor and F major. C7 being one of the main chords of F major, and A7 being one of the main chords of D harmonic minor, it's called dominant 7 chord.

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Originally Posted by Iaroslav Vasiliev
Originally Posted by draft
A few measures in the refrain section shown above, go to the F - C - F,
but back to the Dm - A - Dm.

So can you say the song switch's keys between Dm and F ?

Yes, this refrain obviously switches between D harmonic minor and F major. C7 being one of the main chords of F major, and A7 being one of the main chords of D harmonic minor, it's called dominant 7 chord.


I'm feeling a bit cautious about the way it's stated, especially to someone who has a very small grasp of theory at this point. The OP does not understand the different types of minor scales.

The question is about keys. You have answered with a scale . If you're teaching, and a person is new to things, it's better to define - and if a student doesn't know minor scale types, should they even be brought up? "Harmonic minor" is a type of scale. Actually A7 could go with a harmonic minor scale, or a melodic minor scale (what's commonly taught as ascending only). wink A7 would go with harmonic or melodic minor scales. Am7 with the natural minor, with a much less strong movement.

When do we have an actual key change in a piece? Can one or two measures constitute that the piece has modulated to a new key? Isn't it usually taught that a new key has to be established? I had answered that I wasn't sure that any key change had taken place because we don't have enough of the music to tell. But this may also be a gray area. (?)

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Originally Posted by keystring
When do we have an actual key change in a piece? Can one or two measures constitute that the piece has modulated to a new key? Isn't it usually taught that a new key has to be established? I had answered that I wasn't sure that any key change had taken place because we don't have enough of the music to tell. But this may also be a gray area. (?)

In my opinion the key changes are obvious in this refrain, we don't need the whole score to see it. I should have written the word 'harmonic' in braces to indicate that I was talking about keys. A short key change is called a deviation, so what we have here are mulptiple key deviations.

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Ok, "key deviation" is something I've heard called "temporary key change" so I know what you're saying. The "harmonic" could have caused confusion since the OP has indicated having no knowledge about the different kinds of minor scales. "harmonic" in braces (or not at all) would work.

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There are not 3 different minor-keys. Often missteached through Jazz-Theory. Minor is an unstable status while major is stable. The use of the second tetrachord in minor is different case by case. In my Opinion best explained in Arnold Schönberg's Theory of Harmony. I have the german original, but english translation should be correct and not so thick. ;-)

Last edited by Andymania; 02/01/20 09:16 AM.

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I'm going to return to my earlier point. Apologies if I seem stuck on this, but it's one of my opinions.

The discussion here is largely theoretical and intellectual. I've described before my dabbling into theory (and I have nowhere near the knowledge most of you do.) I read my wife's theory books, she has a music degree, and I understood them intellectually but they didn't really have a context in life and the memorized facts quickly faded. Then I ended up running a praise and worship band, and now there was actual application. Now the page could match what I heard. Music ultimately is about listening.

So. Take a step back and listen to the piece the OP posted.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WKaaaJJ-9OU

Yes, this is sound and not notes on a page. But...........aren't notes on a page supposed to be our route to sound?

That sounds minor to me. Looking at the page it seemed vaguely familiar; I realize now that I've sung it before, when I briefly helped out a Catholic church as cantor.


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It's amazing what rare songs can be identified by our forum's members. Congrats! smile

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Originally Posted by TimR
I. Now the page could match what I heard. Music ultimately is about listening.

So. Take a step back and listen to the piece the OP posted.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WKaaaJJ-9OU

Yes, this is sound and not notes on a page. But...........aren't notes on a page supposed to be our route to sound?

That sounds minor to me. Looking at the page it seemed vaguely familiar; I realize now that I've sung it before, when I briefly helped out a Catholic church as cantor.


Tim, I listened, and had the same impression as when I sang it off the page here, but more so - except we have the whole thing.

It is in general minor. The flute opens with melodic minor scale btw. The part "We are the light" is brief, and it has a brief major sound, like the sun poking out for a moment on a cloudy day, flooding the world with its brightness. I suspect that this is deliberate, and deliberately goes with the words. A case could be made for Iaroslav's "key deviation" which I understand as a quick visit to another key, rather than a full modulation. This is a really quick visit of a few seconds and one bar. I looked up "key deviation" and found only hits for a section of the same book. It may not be a common term or concept here.

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Originally Posted by keystring
It is in general minor. The flute opens with melodic minor scale btw. The part "We are the light" is brief, and it has a brief major sound, like the sun poking out for a moment on a cloudy day, flooding the world with its brightness. I suspect that this is deliberate, and deliberately goes with the words.

Yes, I 'm absolutely sure it's deliberate.

Originally Posted by keystring
A case could be made for Iaroslav's "key deviation" which I understand as a quick visit to another key, rather than a full modulation. This is a really quick visit of a few seconds and one bar. I looked up "key deviation" and found only hits for a section of the same book. It may not be a common term or concept here.

That really can be called a modulation. If a change is one phrase in length and it has V-I cadence it's really enough to call it a modulation. I'm not sure how widespread the term "deviation" is in English, but I met it a couple of times.
In jazz music there is also a term "toncisation", but it denotes a key change for less than a phrase, so it's an ultra brief key change, it doesn't apply here.

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TimR, I listened to the recording you posted (thank you for that). From listening only, I had no idea if it was major or minor, and the reportedly major phrase didn’t stand out as different from the rest of it. By looking at the chords and keys on paper, I get clues about what to practice listening more closely for.

I did hear the ends of phrases in the melody resolving a whole step down-then-up, which is to me a beautiful sound which could lead me to *guess* that the melody is minor. But it still didn’t lead me to *hear* in any conclusive way any distinctive minor (or major) sound in the rest of the melody.


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Originally Posted by PianoStudent88
TimR, I listened to the recording you posted (thank you for that). From listening only, I had no idea if it was major or minor, and the reportedly major phrase didn’t stand out as different from the rest of it. By looking at the chords and keys on paper, I get clues about what to practice listening more closely for.

I did hear the ends of phrases in the melody resolving a whole step down-then-up, which is to me a beautiful sound which could lead me to *guess* that the melody is minor. But it still didn’t lead me to *hear* in any conclusive way any distinctive minor (or major) sound in the rest of the melody.

Are you working with a teacher right now? You are not supposed to hear Major or minor based on how a melody ends. Both Major and minor can end with the leading tone going up to the tonic. You have to first identify the tonic, and then listen for the third above that (mediant).


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AZNpiano - since we actually finally have a teacher in there - can you answer the question about when is there a key change? Have a look at the preceding discussion. The piece sounds major briefly, for one single major. Is that enough to say it's changed to the key of F major for that measure? Are there various theories and thoughts about that?

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I played it starting at the refrain and was confused because it established F major in my ear but it didn't return to F major. The recording really helps, it makes much more sense, and the piece is definitely in D minor. The intro chords are:
Dm Bb Dm Bb Dm A Dm
Or: i VI i VI i V i

The one five one cadence is the clear giveaway. C# in the A major chord is the leading tone to tonic D.

"We are the light of the world" makes F sound like the tonic because of F C F. To me, it doesn't stay in F for long enough to be called a key change, but I don't know what would be the prevailing analysis. The next phrase, "may our light shine before all", by ending on the A major chord, makes you expect D minor next, but you get the temporary F phrase again.

I lost track of the question about (2) and (5). If I were modifying the second measure of the refrain, I'd insert only one chord after F, before moving on to Dm, not two. There are several possibilities of what that chord could be.

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Originally Posted by mostlystrings
I lost track of the question about (2) and (5). If I were modifying the second measure of the refrain, I'd insert only one chord after F, before moving on to Dm, not two. There are several possibilities of what that chord could be.

My thoughts exactly.


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Originally Posted by keystring
AZNpiano - since we actually finally have a teacher in there - can you answer the question about when is there a key change? Have a look at the preceding discussion. The piece sounds major briefly, for one single major. Is that enough to say it's changed to the key of F major for that measure? Are there various theories and thoughts about that?

Whoever uses that example to teach modulation should be shot. Terrible example of modulation.


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Originally Posted by PianoStudent88
TimR, I listened to the recording you posted (thank you for that). From listening only, I had no idea if it was major or minor, and the reportedly major phrase didn’t stand out as different from the rest of it.

.


I think you probably heard something in the character of the tonality, even if you couldn't immediately identify it as major or minor. That will come.

To my ears the "major" section still has a minor feel despite all the major chords. I think that is intended, at least in that recording.

Quote
By looking at the chords and keys on paper, I get clues about what to practice listening more closely for.


YES!!! That is the point of adding theory to lessons. As a purely academic intellectual exercise theory is not worth much to students, but if you are connecting it to what you are hearing it adds meaning, contributes to playing and memorization. That connection is a learned skill.

Sightsinging in choir is enormously easier if you realize your entry is on the 5th of the previous chord, for example; some in our choir haven't had even that minimal background and we end up teaching by rote.

Soloing over changes requires another level above.


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Originally Posted by AZNpiano
Originally Posted by keystring
AZNpiano - since we actually finally have a teacher in there - can you answer the question about when is there a key change? Have a look at the preceding discussion. The piece sounds major briefly, for one single major. Is that enough to say it's changed to the key of F major for that measure? Are there various theories and thoughts about that?

Whoever uses that example to teach modulation should be shot. Terrible example of modulation.


When I was studying basic theory, the idea of a key is that it gets established. "V I" by itself, for example, is not necessarily a cadence: You could have a series of V-I-V-I-V-I which lets the listener hear "we keep pushing to that C, the C must be the tonal center". At some point the music may modulate, either through the kinds of progressions we first learn about, with the transitional bit, or suddenly with chromaticism or whatever, or subtly since good composers aren't following formulas like an IKEA set. But once the piece has modulated to a new key (modulating meaning, to change to a new key) - again we have something that "establishes" the key. ..... I cannot see that happening in the space of four beats in a single measure, to a major key, and then just as suddenly, back to the minor.

That is what bothered me.

Otoh, that one measure does suddenly "shine out with a major feel", and that goes together with the words. Musically I think it was deliberate. One has an "F major feel" for that moment; or one has a "major feel" for that moment. But whether that actually "is" in a new key - that's the question. At best, a "temporary key". But still that made me a bit uneasy.

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Originally Posted by keystring
....the idea of a key is that it gets established. "V I" by itself, for example, is not necessarily a cadence: You could have a series of V-I-V-I-V-I which lets the listener hear "we keep pushing to that C, the C must be the tonal center". At some point the music may modulate, either through the kinds of progressions we first learn about, with the transitional bit, or suddenly with chromaticism or whatever, or subtly since good composers aren't following formulas like an IKEA set. But once the piece has modulated to a new key (modulating meaning, to change to a new key) - again we have something that "establishes" the key. ..... I cannot see that happening in the space of four beats in a single measure, to a major key, and then just as suddenly, back to the minor.

That is what bothered me.

Otoh, that one measure does suddenly "shine out with a major feel", and that goes together with the words. Musically I think it was deliberate. One has an "F major feel" for that moment; or one has a "major feel" for that moment. But whether that actually "is" in a new key - that's the question. At best, a "temporary key". But still that made me a bit uneasy.

I don't think it's a cut-and-dried, either/or situation, where you're in one key or another, or whether certain things must happen to "establish" it. The composer is aiming for ambiguity; the uncertainty is the point. I haven't heard the term 'key deviation' used, but I've heard the term 'brief excursion into other keys' used fairly often.

Like you, I'm more comfortable with having it be one or the other. Is this in a different key here, or not? But I've come to accept that there can be purposeful ambiguity with respect to 'key deviation,' 'brief excursions,' or whatever term one can come up with. The ambiguity is one of the tools in the composer's toolbox.


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If I were teaching a student, I would be on keystring's track, saying that example is not a key change but the composer wanted the "major sound" for effect. I was trying to think of other minor key examples with major sounds:

- There is a hymn titled "Awesome God" by Michael W. Smith that sounds major-ish at first. The chords are: (assuming major)
1st line: an inversion of IV - I - V - vi (that ending could be viewed as a suggestion of minor key or deceptive cadence where you expect I but get VI instead)
2nd line repeats the first melodic phrase, then ends in ii-iii-vi (or maybe ii-III-vi) which is really IV-V-I and that cadence quite clearly "establishes" the minor key

- From Anna Magdalena notebook, the one known in Suzuki as Minuet 2, or BWV Anh 116, starts in G major, with the first part of the second section definitely minor. There is a bunch of Em B Em B Em and regardless of theory explanation, I teach it as a "key change" not only because V repeatedly goes to I but because of needing the string players to understand the importance of D# intonation in B major (not so necessary on a fixed pitch, equal temperament piano).

- In the ubiquitous Fur Elise, after the first and second main themes, the next new theme starts with C7 to F, which is effectively V-I. F major is established for a bit, followed by a progression leading to a C major cadence. C major is established for a bit (using G7), then you land on E major, signaling the return to A minor and the first theme. There are clear cadences, but would I call them key changes? I don't know, the question will never come up in my context.

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