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Harmonic / Chord...
Old 18th December 2010
  #1
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Harmonic / Chord...

I'm learning chords, harmony, harmonic...and before to be totally lost I prefer ask you.

I produce house music

Sometimes I try to play some tunes on the piano. Just to devellop my ears. Particularly this track (I looped the begining) :

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HCS-7BjbY0M

I easily found what are the bass notes (I always try to find the bass note, 99% it's the root of the chord). Then I tried to find the chords, but all I could hear is the harmonic of the bass note, so there is no chords?

I "watched" the track in ableton, and if I well understood that Harmonic - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia what I heard is right ; just the harmonic of the synth ie, the root note, the octave, the fifth etc...No additional notes


Am I totally wrong?


Thanks!


J.
Old 18th December 2010
  #2
Quote:
Originally Posted by JayPee View Post
Am I totally wrong?
Yes.
There are plenty of different chords, they are just playing in the same rhythm as the bass.

Quote:
just the harmonic of the synth ie, the root note, the octave, the fifth
Well if you add any second note it becomes a 'chord' whether it's a 5th or not.

A two note chord is a 'dyad', a three note chord is a triad.
Etc
Old 18th December 2010
  #3
Lives for gear
If you play a D#, the harmonics are : D# D# A# D# G etc... and this is not a chord, right?
Old 18th December 2010
  #4
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Okay,

I got it...asking some questions is always good!


Im analyzing the chord

I was confused, cause, the first chord for ex. is part of the harmonic of the bass note...
Old 18th December 2010
  #5
ark
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Sorry, but there are more than just harmonics going on here.

The "chords" are all two notes each, but the intervals between them are not always a fifth or an octave. Each one is played twice in a row.

Not counting repeats, the progression keeps cycling through seven chords. They are:

Eb-G
C-Eb
Bb-F
Eb-G
F-Bb
C-Eb
Bb-F
Old 18th December 2010
  #6
'Harmonics' is a confusing concept you are throwing out there.
As I said, any two notes, or three notes or four notes are a chord. No matter what notes they are.
A is the 5th in a D chord, D major also has F#, D minor has F.
That's how chords are built up and described.
Chordal structure is called harmony.
A harmonic scale is a series of notes constituting a scale, like a D minor scale, or D major scale.
Old 18th December 2010
  #7
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The harmonic series is attached to each note.

I'm just by ear here but it sounds mostly like 10th's to me. The reason I can hear the tenths (and not 3rds) withought having to think about it is because there is a saw wave with all it's overtones for the root of that (Eb? I don't have perfect pitch) and for the the 10th G. You hear the 10th's too, you just haven't developed the ability to call it by name.

Last edited by RyanC; 18th December 2010 at 08:52 AM.. Reason: said the same thing twice
Old 18th December 2010
  #8
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Also any pure waveform has overtones that are just-tempered, meaning that each frequency relationship is exact.

We (mostly) use an even-tempered scale for the roots, which means that in terms of overtones other then the octaves (which are 1:2 in even tempered) all the other overtones are JUST so slightly out of tune with each-other. Or exactly in-tune, leaving all your other fundamentals and their respective overtones slightly out of tune. Many additive synths are an exception to this including Hammonds (the orginonal additive) because all it's overtones are even-tempered.

This also helps our brains differentiate the "chords" made by overtones from the ones made by multiple notes with their respective overtones. This is a level of detail that makes an FFT look like using a sledge hammer to hang thumb tacks.
Old 18th December 2010
  #9
I must be going mad, because I'm not hearing overtones from a harmonic series, I'm hearing composed chords, with actual notes.
Old 18th December 2010
  #10
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Beermaster's Avatar
 

Whilst the harmonic series most sounds does contain frequencies and relations to the diatonic scale it probably isn't the best way to learn about chords and harmony.

You should go back to the old tried and tested method of gradually learning the names of each of the twelve notes then learn to form major and minor chords on each of them. Learning the common chords found on different degrees of a major scale will open up all kinds of doors for song producing and put you ahead of the game in the dance stuff too.

Good luck !

Beer.
Old 18th December 2010
  #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ark View Post
Sorry, but there are more than just harmonics going on here.

The "chords" are all two notes each, but the intervals between them are not always a fifth or an octave. Each one is played twice in a row.

Not counting repeats, the progression keeps cycling through seven chords. They are:

Eb-G
C-Eb
Bb-F
Eb-G
F-Bb
C-Eb
Bb-F

I can hear all these 'notes'

I'm surely confused about the relation between harmonics/chords/haronize

but, here what I noticed

if you take the first "dyad" (Eb-G), the bass note is Eb, the harmonics are:

Eb Eb Bb Eb G Eb etc..


if you take the second one C-Eb, the bass note is C, the harmonics are :

C C G C Eb C Eb etc...


etc, etc


it's like these chords are "natural harmonics", there is no noutes-out-of-the-bass-harmonics
Old 18th December 2010
  #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisso View Post
I must be going mad, because I'm not hearing overtones from a harmonic series, I'm hearing composed chords, with actual notes.
Well if you're not hearing overtones from a harmonic series as well as composed chords, something is definitely wrong. Do those composed notes sound like flutes? Pipe Organs? A synth with a saw waveform? If you can tell which one is which then you most definitly are hearing overtones from a harmonic series.
Old 18th December 2010
  #13
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@JayPee-

I agree with Beer, the two things are fundamentally different. The best way to look at it is that the one (overtone series) is the type of sound and the other (chords/harmony) is what you would do with that sound.

The overtone series is just based on the pure physics of things like strings horns and vocals. Because we hear these things in nature and from a young age our brain put's together that 1×f, 2×f, 3×f, 4×f, 5×f etc is not a "chord" it is not 5 (or how ever many) things it is one thing.

If two elephants are trumpeting and you hear both sets of 1×f, 2×f, 3×f, 4×f, 5×f etc you perceive it as 2 things, because both respective series are present.
Old 18th December 2010
  #14
Quote:
Originally Posted by RyanC View Post

I agree with Beer, the two things are fundamentally different.
That's what I'm trying to say.
The harmonic series, found in a single sound, is a rather esoteric subject and only confusing to anyone hoping to learn basic western harmony.
Western harmony is essentially based on melodic scales and a rule system.
We generally learn the rules off by heart. E minor scale (and chord) has a G, not a G# for example.
With the dance track being used here for an example, the last thing I would investigate is the harmonic series at work in the bass sound.
For a learner, it's a bass part and a series of chords.
Simple as that.
Old 18th December 2010
  #15
Quote:
Originally Posted by JayPee View Post
if you take the first "dyad" (Eb-G), the bass note is Eb, the harmonics are:

Eb Eb Bb Eb G Eb etc..


if you take the second one C-Eb, the bass note is C, the harmonics are :

C C G C Eb C Eb etc...


etc, etc


it's like these chords are "natural harmonics", there is no noutes-out-of-the-bass-harmonics
Yeah, I would forget the term 'harmonics', I feel it's confusing.
I haven't sat down with a keyboard so I'll take your notes above as correct.
The first 'chord' is Eb Major. The notes in that triad are Eb, G and Bb.
The second 'chord' is C Minor. The notes in that triad are C, Eb and G.
Of course if you take an Eb Major chord and place a C bass note under it, it becomes a C Minor 7th chord (a very typical chord in popular music).
Minor chords are very often used in popular music, and minor 7th and minor 9th chords a lot. I would learn all those chords shapes from a book, or online.
Each key has a set of 8 notes relating to it. Once you know those you can construct chords in each key, and of course start breaking the rules, which is really what you have to do to make interesting music (with tension and release).
Old 18th December 2010
  #16
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Thanks, I appreciate your answers guys!
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