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Thread: How to create a melody line for chords?

  1. #16


    Quote Originally Posted by Malcolm View Post
    Don't take this the wrong way, but, there is that but word; you are trying to make this way too complicated. The I, IV, and V7 chords of a key have been used to write a zillion songs. You can do a lot with just those three little chords.

    The I chord is the tonic or tonal center of that scale/key. Brings rest and resolution.
    The IV chord is the sub dominant which wants to move to the dominant V7 chord, and the V7 wants to move to the I tonic. If we use that progression we move from rest (I) to tension (IV), tension is good, to climax (V7) and then resolve back to rest when we return to the I tonic chord. We brought up a thought, discussed it reached a climax and then brought that thought to a conclusion. Do the same with verse number two. Verse number three and the chorus would be well served with that same progression.

    Those three little chords have given you the classic movement a verse needs, to be interesting.

    So....... Start there. If you want color and flavor the ii can sub for the IV. The vii can sub for the V or V7, that leaves the iii and vi for color and flavor. This need not be complicated. http://tabs.ultimate-guitar.com/m/mi...banner_crd.htm

    Now for the melody use the notes from the chord's pentatonic scale. While the I tonic is active in the song use it's pentatonic notes for your melody. When the next chord is active use it's pentatonic notes. No not in scale order, make a melodic phrase out of the notes, i.e. whole steps, half steps and leaps and don't forget to leave pauses. We like to hear four note phrases with pauses.

    OK how many like notes per measure? One gets harmonization, two like notes will be better, three are probably not necessary. Each chord's pentatonic will give you three like notes for harmonization and two safe passing notes for color and flavor. Help yourself to what you need.

    Have fun.
    Thanks Malcolm you're a genius! I finally figured out how to play a small phrase and determine what chord it asks for. For example in the key of C, lets take all the double stop notes the root and a 3rd

    C and E
    D and F
    E and G
    F and A
    G and B
    A and C
    B and D

    C major C-E-G
    D minor D-F-A
    E minor E-G-B
    D major F-A-C
    G major G-B-D
    A minor A-C-E
    B dim B-D-F

    This diagram chart here showed me when I played a small phrase it showed what type of triad I could play over it and the key word here is "triad."

    Here it is:

    C-E-G/E-G-B/G-B-D/B-D-F/D-F-A/F-A-C/A-C-E/and back to C-E-G.

    I learned this on the piano how these chords follow along side by side each other on the piano if you look or pay close attention to notes you can tell just what chord comes next its the 3rd and the fifth of the chord in the chart diagram that Im talking about. Anyway this is how it works on the guitar lets say you had a simple phrase that went C-D-E-E. Based upon the double stop rule you have to notes that make up for a double stop C and E and here you have two notes that are being emphasized heavily here and that is C and E. But when you look at the chord list above. You can tell what chord to play over it and that is a C major triad or A minor triad. How? This phrase makes up of a double stop two notes C and E if you look at the chord list of above you'll find that two of those notes are in C major and A minor triad (C-E)-G and A-(C-E).

    This phrase I came up with fitted a minor chord perfectly it goes A-C-D-C-A when you look at this phrase what do you notice here? Let me guess here an double stop! Of course! A and C is an a double stop and the notes A -C belong to chord A minor or F major. How could this be? An A minor triad (A-C)-E and F major triad F-(A-C). And that's how you can tell what chord to apply over a simple phrase based upon the double stop notes and to learn this you have to play a note, skip a note, play a note, skip a note, on the guitar. That's how you can tell what short phrases are made up of. Thanks Malcom

  2. #17
    Registered User Malcolm's Avatar
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    Feb 2004
    Deep East Texas Piney Woods
    Quote Originally Posted by dwest2419 View Post
    ......... How could this be? An A minor triad (A-C)-E and F major triad F-(A-C). And that's how you can tell what chord to apply over a simple phrase based upon the double stop notes and to learn this you have to play a note, skip a note, play a note, skip a note, on the guitar. That's how you can tell what short phrases are made up of. Thanks Malcom
    Something new to "play" with. You may have already figured this out, if not have fun.

    C Major Scale stacked in 3rds (every other note) = the notes and chords made from 
    the C major scale:
    Notes	 Scale Degree	Spelling		    Chord name      Function
    C		R	CEGB  	R-3-5-7 	    Cmaj 7		I	(tonic)
    D		2	DFAC 	R-b3-5-b7    Dmin 7		ii
    E		3	EGBD 	R-b3-5-b7    Emin 7		iii
    F		4	FACE 	R-3-5-7	    Fmaj 7		IV	(subdominant)
    G		5	GBDF 	R-3-5-b7	    G7		          V	(dominant)
    A		6	ACEG 	R-b3-5-b7    Amin 7		vi	
    B		7	BDFA 	R-b3-b5-b7   Bmin7b5	        viidim  (diminished)
    Why is the D chord minor?  If you compare the DFAC to the notes in the D major scale
     the D major scale will have an F# and a C#.  Your DFAC has the 3 and 7 flatted for a 
    spelling of R-b3-5-b7 and that spelling makes a Dm7 chord.
    All that R-b3-5-b7 comes in handy if you are a bassist as we play chord tones one note 
    at a time.
    Skip a note or every other note in a scale make the chords for that scale. Once you know how to stack 3rds you will be able to come up with the chords for any scale. Once you can do that you can build a chord progression to use with those chords.

    For grins, the Cm scale is C, D, Eb, F, G, Ab, Bb (The major scale with the 3, 6 & 7 flatted). Using every other note make the four note chords for the Cm scale.

    For extra grins make the four note chords for the C harmonic minor scale. C harmonic minor scale takes the major scale and flats the 3 and 6.

    Check yourself here. http://www.guitar-chords.org.uk/chords-key-c-minor.html
    Notice the common chord progressions used for the chords in the C major, Cm and C harmonic minor scale
    Last edited by Malcolm; 07-22-2012 at 12:53 PM.

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