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VG and Anime songs built around Maj7?


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Does anyone know any particular vg and/or anime songs that is built around a maj7 chord? To be specific it's a VI chord (In the key of A minor, that would be Fmaj7). The chord progression usually goes like this: VI7, VII, v7, i, etc... It's my favorite chord progression. The melody revolves around an "i" chord while the bass plays the root of VI in the beginning of a measure or phrase.

God Knows - Suzumiya Haruhi

Airman ga Taosenai - megaman 2

Omoide wa Okkusenman - megaman 2

Star Rise - Bamboo Blade

Flying Battery Zone - Sonic & Knuckles

Blaze - Tsubasa Chronicle

Minish Village/Credits - Minish Cap

Green Hill Zone - Sonic 1

Star Festival - Super Mario Galaxy

Got any more? I created a small demo in FL Studio tying some of them together and it just makes my emotions melt. The way they transition just makes it seem so perfect. It's epic! Please suggest some for me either from anime or vg. If you've ever watched or heard nico nico douga medleys then you probably get the idea where I'm heading with this.

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not to nag, but your statement didn't make a whole lot of sense at first. a maj7 chord is, say, a I7 - a chord that's major and has a major seventh in the top. what you're talking about in your example is a flatted major VI chord - bVI. your progression (at least, what i'm assuming it is) technically doesn't exist in standard notation because the flatted six and seven chords (and a minor 5 with a 7th, for that matter) don't exist. are you actually talking about a flat five? because if you are, you don't mean a flatted five, you mean a i chord that has two moving tones that dress it up. like, let's say we're talking in C minor. your v7-i is actually just a i chord that has a D and a Bb move to an Eb and C respectively.

not to be a mean person, but just make sure you're talking about the right thing when you're discussing theory around here. people get lost easy otherwise =)

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I'm not efficient in music theory yet because I'm self taught lol.

To put it this way. In the key of A minor the chord progression goes like this: Fmaj7, G, Em7, Am. How would you put that in roman numerals then?

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The only one of these that I'm particularly familiar with is Green Hill Zone (for reference, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GFHvxuuOymo). Here's what I take to be the chord progression:

Pedal C at the start, then in the verse, FM7 Em7 (repeat x 2) Dm7 CM7

Then in the bridge, Bb Am Ab G

Only very weak chord functions, so Roman numerals aren't really going to tell you that much about the music. F, IV if we take it to be in C, is kind of treated as an alternate (and Lydian) tonal center, since the verse is built around it, and the bridge reestablishes a strong expectation for C that's undermined by the nonresolution to FM7 when the verse comes back. It's very similar to the way I interpret Zelda's lullaby, a piece which was discussed in the music theory thread. So Brian, check out Zelda's Lullaby if you haven't heard it already.

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Roman numerals aren't really going to tell you that much about the music.

Really? How would I go about explaining to people what the chord progression of a song is if roman numerals don't tell you much?

Since I'm a visual learner (I really can't comprehend reading text), here are the chords I was talking about (below). How would I explain this to people if they wanted to know what the chord progression is?

chordprogression.jpg

Next question. In the first measure (above), which is correct? Fmaj7 or Am/F? Are they the samething or not?

chordprogression2.jpg

I've learned the basics of chord progressions as shown above. I said VI7 (or i/VI?), VII, v7, and i in relation to A minor. I'm in a state of confusion now after "the prophet of mephisto" (damn such a long name, is there any other short name we should call you by?) said it didn't make sense. You may use these pics if you want.

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you can call me whatever the hell you want to call me. just don't get offended when we try to help you and you have no idea what we're talking about. it's not our fault you know nothing about this stuff, even though sites like musictheory.net spoon-feed it to you. if you haven't bothered to do your own research, why should we help you? that's why the response "google.com" usually follows any question here on the site at some point.

also, your second example has two major mistakes in it. first off, you're basing your chords around a natural minor scale, which sounds cool, but all minor progressions in functional harmony are based around the harmonic minor scale - a raised seventh, which gives you a major V chord and therefore gives you a cadence to use no matter what. this'll give you a V instead of a v (raised 7th is a G#), a diminished vii chord from the raised root, and also possibly a +III (C, E, G# is an augmented chord) based on how you're doing it (but no one uses these so they don't really count).

the reason numerals won't work is because what you're talking about aren't standard chords. roman numerals only work for functional harmony, and you're talking about something else. functional harmony includes all normal harmonic development - and major seven chords are rarely used within that normal harmonic development.

for example, in your first example you're using an Fmaj7, G, Emin7, and Am chord. these progressions aren't a part of traditional harmony because of the lack of passing tones between them - while our pop-oriented ears hear them as cool, they make no contrapuntal sense. for example, going from G to E has no true passing tones, and as such doesn't really work in traditional harmony. your awesome progression is little more than two chords - Am and G - changing roots by a third (G to E, A to F). nothing really special about it. in fact, it's actually less interesting that it could be if it were using the proper chords - an E7 instead of an Emin7 (g# instead of g) would add harmonic interest in the change between the G and the E7, and it'd lead to Am a lot better.

Fmaj and Am/F are different for the same reason that B# and C are different. they sound the same but serve different functions.

basically, if you want to talk about this progression, understand it's not something you can analyze using traditional techniques because it fits in those techniques approximately as well as modern fashion would fit in victorian england. those people would find it crass and dissonant, even if you find it sublime, simply because it doesn't fit into those ideas.

you can use the numerals to describe it, but that's a poor choice of context, similar to explaining a painting by only using the terminology of a dentist. describe it by what it is - a chord progression. just say what the bloody chords are, and you'll be fine. just take it at face value, man - any progression that lacks true harmonic interest will become grating if repeated enough times. regardless of how cool some chord progression sounds, don't you think others would have exploited it by now for some shitty pop song? i mean, it's not like other musicians haven't already explored just about every four-bar set of chords that's possible already by the nineteenth century.

so, as you can see, the reason that it's not a VI7, VII, or v7 is because none of them actually exist in minor keys (else you'd need a raised root for the VI7 to exist, and a lowered 7th for VII and v7).

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PRELIMINARY EDIT: I think really the issue is that you're using Roman numerals as a stand-in for chord names that removes the need to transpose when applying the progression to a different key (which is perfectly legit, as far as I'm concerned), whereas prophet and I are looking at them in a broader analytical context that may not be relevant to your level of music theory experience. To some extent, we're all just talking past each other. So don't take this post too seriously, I guess.

Really? How would I go about explaining to people what the chord progression of a song is if roman numerals don't tell you much?

You basically do what I did in my above post, although in more depth.

To clarify, I meant that Roman numerals don't tell you much in the particular case of Green Hill Zone. I didn't mean that to be a blanket prescription against Roman numerals in general, although I do tend to dislike them even in classical music contexts. IMO, they're a necessary evil at best and a misrepresentation at worst, but they're useful for undergraduate-level theoretical work and for representing straightforward harmonic changes in the context of functional harmony (i.e. things that basically follow a I-V-I framework).

If I call something a ii chord, this has implications for what chord it probably came from and what chord it's probably going to. Mostly this is because the type of music Roman numerals were designed for is based around the relationship between the tonic (I) and dominant (V) chords. Generally speaking, everything moves from I to V and back to I, and the other chord numerals describe the path taken between I and V. If the tonic dominant relationship isn't as important, as is the case in a lot of pop music, then calling something a ii chord begins to lose its significance, because the general structure of the relationships among harmonies that the Roman numeral system describes has begun to break down. (I remember back when I was first learning about theory I looked at a transcription of an Evanescence song and it blew my mind that it ended with iii going to i because that went against everything I'd learned was "supposed to" happen.)

The main issue with Roman numerals, especially in a pop music context where harmonies may not do what is expected of them, is that the numerals tend to cause arguments about terminology and expectations within the system (e.g. is this a iii chord in the tonic key or a vi chord in the dominant key? or, this is a V chord but it doesn't resolve so something must be screwy). These arguments tend to lose sight of how the harmony or the individual voices behave in the specific instance under consideration. Sometimes things don't fit into the "correct" boxes, even in classical music, and a less rigid approach (usually involving a paragraph of prose) can frequently better explain what's going on in the music. For example, in Green Hill Zone, just putting Roman numerals on things doesn't do much to clarify the relationship between the F and C chords, because calling them IV and I implies relationships that simply are not present in the music, and implying nonexistent relationships means that you then have to justify their nonexistence, and you just end up digging yourself into a hole because your system doesn't describe what's actually happening in the music. I think tonic and dominant are still important terms for discussing popular music, but not the rigid way in which they're characterized by the Roman numeral system.

/TL;DR

I guess the point of all this rambling is not that you should abandon Roman numerals (because you shouldn't, especially if you're just starting out with theory); it's that you shouldn't assume that assigning Roman numerals to a chord progression is the end-all-be-all of musical thought.

EDIT:

Next question. In the first measure (above), which is correct? Fmaj7 or Am/F? Are they the samething or not?

Either works. Fmaj7 is more straightforward.

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Guys, I just finished reading this thread, and.. Christ.

I knew exactly what he meant. Technically incorrect or not, I don't get how you guys could not have understood. The chords played in my head as I read them. His numerals told me quite clearly what chord progression he was referring to. I wasn't wasting time obsessing over rote-learned music theory rules and ideologies.

And prophet, you're like.. suggesting improvements to his progression and implying it to be primitive, basically. Your alternative, and it being better simply on the principle that it is closer to the functional harmony used by composers of the Baroque, Classical, and Romantic eras, is debatable to say the least.

And to speak of chords "not existing.." I almost laughed out loud. If your rigid system of labeling chords doesn't permit composing in natural minor, that's its problem.

Understanding music requires more than blindly following instructions and being condescending.

That being said, sorry, OP, none come to mind at the moment.

It looks like you've got a lot for the time being though.. haven't you had enough FMaj7 GMaj Emin Amin? heh

p.s. no one uses augmented chords? i guess you haven't listened to music in the past 150 or so years...

EDIT: Actually Brian, I just remembered one...

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i'm well aware that those chords exist, man. everything 'exists'. the difference is that he was asking about using Roman numerals to describe them, and we said that you can't do that because it simply doesn't fit. i'm well aware that there's more to music than theory, but he asked about theory, and i responded in kind. the whole point of theory is blindly following instructions that don't make as much sense as you'd like. i rarely compose using perfect voice-leading and chord structures. when i talk with college professors about theory, though, i need to be able to speak the language.

no, no one uses +III chords in minor, because they sound horrid and there's nowhere to go with it. can't you read?

the chord structure is primitive. i suggested a way to make it more auditorily interesting. considering i'm the only published composer in this thread, and the only currently composing-for-games composer in the thread on a VG music forum, i'd like to think i know what sounds good and what doesn't. take it or leave it.

edit: where's my LAProject track? :<

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the whole point of theory is blindly following instructions that don't make as much sense as you'd like.

This is where you're wrong, and where our disagreement lies.

You treat functional harmony as a static, universal doctrine that dictates how and why certain chord structures sound appealing. This is incorrect.

Functional harmony, and music theory in general, are post-incidental studies and ways of describing discussing or analyzing music that has been written.

Theory is the study of music, and particularly its tendencies and progressions it has gone through, throughout history and in various cultures.

the chord structure is primitive. i suggested a way to make it more auditorily interesting.

A chord is not primitive or civilized. You suggested a way to make it more obviously lead to from its penultimate chord to its final chord. Whether a smoother transition is better than a more contrasted transition is not a matter of objective universal fact. It's up to the composer, and to think in every musical situation, there is only one correct compositional choice, would lead to the kind of musical blandness and sameness that we had in the Classical era. >.>

For the record, the specific example in Flying Battery Zone (I can't believe you people, have you never played Sonic?) does in fact use your version. It is in A minor and the chords from the section in question are: FMaj7, GMaj, E7, Amin (GMaj)

And that's very nice that you've done musical things. All that assuming you're the only credible person here though.. talk about pompous. I myself have written a CD of piano compositions, and in fact have sold several copies (I haven't gotten around to making another batch though, life's been hectic). Many of the tracks are on my Soundclick of ye old.

I'll just try to leave it at that and not go into the detailed story of my musical upbringing and at what age I did what things etc., because if I were to turn this into a who's-the-bigger-musical-prodigy epeen contest, I'd have my head just as far up my ass as you.

i'd like to think i know what sounds good and what doesn't.

Music theory doesn't tell you what sounds good. This is a disturbingly common misconception, made by people to whom it would be in their best interest if true, due to lack of a good ear. It (music theory) tries (keyword: tries, often succeeds, but is in fact not a proper science) to explain, after the fact, why things that got used and reused in a certain era of music, sounded good.

Your ability to tell if something sounds good should not come from your musical training. It should come from your ear.

Most of the people I've ever come across who were particularly rigid and verbose with their music theory, happened to have a terrible ear.

I haven't been studying music theory in quite some time now, but I assure you I went through all the theory training you did. 50% of it was crap then, it's crap now. If there's something that doesn't make sense in music theory, I will shove it down and rise above it. It started when I taught myself 3 against 4 using a simple math problem, after my piano teacher of the time taught it to me incorrectly. Now it's laughing at people who've never touched +III chords because they think it's not allowed to go anywhere. Speaking of which, if that chord is so horrible, why force yourself into it by only allowing harmonic minor?

To be honest, I'm still not clear on what the deal is with your whole "chord progressions are in harmonic minor" thing. Why? You said something about always having a V-i cadence. That's retarded. v-i is a cadence as well, and anyone who blocks out their ability to hear that because Bach didn't use it, is retarded.

If you have the time to listen, tell me how primitive my chords in Reminiscence are. (Just don't be unfair and judge it by the first minute and 20 seconds when it's just switching between the two chords for the intro =p).

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And LA mix probably isn't gonna happen.

Getting an upright piano moved in here at some point within the next month, but lord knows I can't find my god damn microphone stands and probably forgot most of my arrangement idea anyway. (though I did make notes...)

But yeah, probably not gonna happen.

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Really? How would I go about explaining to people what the chord progression of a song is if Roman numerals don't tell you much?

I've learned the basics of chord progressions as shown above. I said VI7 (or i/VI?), VII, v7, and i in relation to A minor.

Well for starters using roman numerals is bad because in this particular case i read VI7 as you wrote (in A minor as you were using) as F7 not Fmaj7.

The same goes for the i/VI that you wrote, i read this as Amin/Fmaj (An A minor chord over a F major chord). If you were to write to show something being in inversion and being in the bass, for that chord you would write VI6 to indicate that it is in first inversion.

You're better off explaining a progression with chord symbols rather than Roman numerals because of the ambiguity that will come out of using the symbols that way.

So to answer your question op, the progression is probably better off explained with Fmaj7, G, Em7, Am; rather than Roman numerals.

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Well for starters using roman numerals is bad because in this particular case i read VI7 as you wrote (in A minor as you were using) as F7 not Fmaj7.

The same goes for the i/VI that you wrote, i read this as Amin/Fmaj (An A minor chord over a F major chord). If you were to write to show something being in inversion and being in the bass, for that chord you would write VI6 to indicate that it is in first inversion.

Thank you for that. Those are perfectly logical reasons.

To prophet, I've no qualms with this, with the fact that his using roman numerals may be not the best way to state it. But again, he added a clarification right after, in his initial post, naming all the chords in the sequence.

Thus I fail to see how his post did not contain all the necessary information to communicate his progression and stand by the view that you were a bit needlessly pompous and harsh with him.

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thanks for letting me know that you're dropping one of the biggest tracks in the project :<

don't do the white knight thing for this nub, miku. no one cares.

roman numerals are useless with pop-ish shit like he's drooling over. i stated this, but attempted to explain it anyways.

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