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Question relating to Key's and Progressions.

Music Theory
13 Oct 2009 05:17 | Quote
Joined: 22 Feb 2008
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I've started to get into and understand writing music in relation to the given key and the progression relating to it.
I'm wondering where would say a suspended, add (is it added? can't remember its meaning) or diminished chord come in for both a key and a progression?

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Thanks for the replies :)
Sorry for any screw ups, I'm typing this up in a college lecture XD
13 Oct 2009 05:51 | Quote
Joined: 29 Apr 2009
United States
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you can throw a sus or a dim in anywhere ya want, depending on yer mood and tastes
IE: when playing a progression that involves a 'turn-around' or a measure w/ 4 beats extra you see this a lot -- say its a simple I-II-IV
in G; an A7sus4 for and a Dsus4(etc) would fall in almost instinctively.

and the basic =
(in any key w/ any chord) sus, and aug, change the 'mood' of a chord by withholding a note or two. simply treat them as you would any other chord(s)

and for awhile toss the all the THEORY stuff and have some fun with these chords --in a non restrictive way.

13 Oct 2009 08:01 | Quote
Joined: 22 Feb 2008
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Hey thanks Carl ^^
I'm still tossing about my chords, but I find myself starting to working out the notes being played and there relation more, even though I'm self-taught..(note neccisary asking of the question up thar^)

Did I work out the correct key it's in btw?
May have some stuff to show you guys in the coming months ;)

Play it from the heart;
13 Oct 2009 10:25 | Quote
Joined: 29 Apr 2009
United States
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Karma: 23
damn! i type sooo slow and had written a loong reply (argh) i'll try again:
Nutter166 says:
Play it from the heart

Jordan, Ya said it all^^^right there^^^

(i had a long thing re theory etc eaten by the web when i hit a wrong key and cant find that "groove" again, sorry Bro.)

the bare bones boring part of what i was trying to say =

Yes - the chords are "correct"
and this is where theory fails us; many think of music-theory as music-LAW ... nothing could be further from the truth!

if we take your statement as 'fact' :
"The Am-Fmaj-Dm-Gm-Am chords are found in the key of C" you have met some theory-standards (what i call book-theory as apposed to practical-theory)
I'd feel fine tossing a Bm, Bm7,F#, G7 , etc etc etc in there as well as augmenting the Am w/ an added 5th (pinky-3rd fret high-e) or a 9th to the G (an A) etc-etc-etc.
when things sound good to you, they are.(to you)
when things sound bad to you, they are.(to you)

I will give what i have found to be my 'best chordal advice' over the years:
Play around , Make up chords and name them later, move where and when you heart dictates, have FUN.
work this into your Theory studies; it pays off bigtime!
(hell i move C to Cm to F4 and other "wrong" moves all the time)

It IS important to know book-theory ... very important
but not as important as 'practical theory', Dig?
I mean hell if we went 'by the book' we'd have to toss out most of Coltrane's later stuff lol

you are doing well it appears(org post), so keep on doin', my advice is , as stated above , is to allow yourself room to explore and invent.

and....as always, Jordan...


13 Oct 2009 15:47 | Quote
Joined: 24 Sep 2008
United States
Karma: 16
to start off
I hate that as well so I found a trick. before you hit post, highlight and copy all that you wrote, then if something goes wrong all you have to do is paste it back down at the bottom and you don't have to save anything just make sure you don't hit delete that sucks.


first about chord naming. This can be a tricky *** and you can be flat out wrong, but people name them in my ways there is no stander in naming. Look at T monk just try to name his chords there crazy. But I'm going to tell you what i think first about those names, but there by no mean the right way or the only way or the proper way.

Sus(short for suspended) is when the the third is replaced(suspended) by the 2rd or 4th(general 4 so if you see just sus think 4th)

Add when you Skipp a step like Add 9. if you continue in thirds past the triads(harmony is based in thirds) the next one past the 5th should be the 7th. but if you skip the 7th you are in a way adding the 9th.

Diminished changes so much it is not funny the only way to tell is in context. so I'm not going to tackle it.

i Don't know if that was need but it read like a hit of confusion so i figure what the hell.

And i going to highlight what Carl said again and i think is most important theory should be tossed out the window music is about the ears not the brain. It really is the study of bull**. but it turns out i like bull**(and I'm also full of it if you didn't already know) my other hobby is Philosophy who would of thunk it. so with that, as i like to better understand life with philosophy, I also like to understand how my ears work so i study music theory.

So on to the theory of when to uses these chords. well that is a huge book I'm not going to write. But I will tell you how to do it Diatonically. Now if you don't already now Diatonic means Sharing the same notes. So the only notes your going to play are the ones in the 7 scale(or any scale but I'm guessing your using diatonic major). Now this is going to need a full knowledge of your modes. You need to all the steps of these modes, like Lydian- 1,2,3,4#,5,6,7 and such and such. Know you already have a grasp of keys. So know just relate the chords to there given modes. In the key of C, The F chord could be F6, F add 9, F add 9 and 6, maybe even F+11. What about E minor well that would be the Phrygian mode- 1,b2,b3,4,5,b6,b7. Well with that chord you can use E minor flat9, E minor7th, Esus4, and so on. Now how to fit the chord together so they sound nice is a whole other beast. Because while in theoretical Harmony they are correct melodically they can sound like ass. so for that you have to use your ears because that is another book that i wont write.

so it end it I'm going to recommend two books by Ted Greene, "Chord Chemistry" and "Modern Chord Progression". Chemistry is more of a reference book but has a great chapter on chord subs. Progression is manly just page after page of Progression to help you ears and fingers but has many a helpful chapter on chordal knowledge.
14 Oct 2009 08:16 | Quote
Joined: 22 Feb 2008
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Hey thanks man :) Glad I was theortically correct in and I get what you mean, I play out via ear more then anything but I find myself asking 'well, I'm playing this # what's the key?' and such, which is good in ways but I play from what I feel, I'm just limited to a degree don't know enough chord shapes and I suck at barre's :( (screwed up index finger makes barreing hard, specially on thick necks like on an acoustic).

and yeh that sucks, I just go ctrl+a (select all) then once it's highlighted everything in the post box ctrl+c, so if it fails all I do is press ctrl+v and it's back :)

Woo for coming up with you 'own' chords, I've done it so much I play chords not recognised anywhere yet sound so nice, so I generally go by the nearest chord that uses that shape..so like a B7 but played with an open-e, I call it B7-SupE#/E.

Thanks for the recommendations, sounds like some books I could do with :P will see how much I got to play with moneywise over the next month or so, on the theory side of things...my brain kind of flew out the window but looking backover it I see what you mean and how the chords relate to the theory, so thanks for that as well.

Oh and on the philosphy front, man after my own heart ;) I don't study it but I do enjoy looking into it for the same reasons, same with music theory I just wonder now how it all connects and relates.

So all in all =]
Cheers to RA & Carl.
+Karama (if it would let me)
14 Oct 2009 19:09 | Quote
Joined: 28 Aug 2008
United Kingdom
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@ RA & Carl,

Should you accidently hit delete (I too have been through this irritation) press CTRL + Z and it'll restore all that you accidently deleted. But if it does that error thing when you post then do what RA said and copy and paste.

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