The No.1 Website for Pro Audio
What key is this song in
Old 8th March 2017
  #31
Gear Maniac
 
SOUND BOMBING's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by RyanC View Post
For the most part the bassline is just on the roots and 5ths of the chords, with the little chromatic walk ups-

|Bb F Bb |G G(hi) Bb Bnat |C C(hi) C | F F Ab Anat|

Then the Chorus is more held out

|Db | G Bb Bnat | C | F Ab Anat|


Always the Bb Bnat and Ab Anat are the last 2 8th notes leading up to the next chord.
How is a b nat in a b minor chord? I thought i was only playing notes in b minor?
Old 8th March 2017
  #32
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by SOUND BOMBING View Post
How is a b nat in a b minor chord? I thought i was only playing notes in b minor?
The short answer is that it's not that big of a deal to have notes that aren't in the key. In music theory there are many 'reasons'. It could be a passing tone, like in this bass line where it's just walking up to the next chord tone, or it can be a chord tone that is from a chord that isn't diatonic, it could be borrowing from minor, etc.

The longer answer is if you want to get into funk/blues/soul/gospel- IE the Black American musical tradition, you aren't always going to be able to apply "inside the box" thinking. IMO the best analogy here is slang in language- It's not always grammatically (music theoretically) *correct*. That's what makes a bro from E St Louis sound different than a Harvard eng teacher- and that's also similar to what makes DeBarge sound different than Yanni.

In my view, pedagogical music theory suffers from a pretty bad case of 'white privilege'...which is to say that if you go buy a random music theory book, or google music theory etc, it's gonna be teaching you to sound more like Yanni then DeBarge. It's the same language though, so you can still learn from that book, just don't get too hung up on *the rules*. Learning by ear is the best thing you can do along with finding some people to jam with who come from this musical tradition.
Old 3rd September 2018
  #33
Gear Maniac
 
SOUND BOMBING's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by RyanC View Post
The short answer is that it's not that big of a deal to have notes that aren't in the key. In music theory there are many 'reasons'. It could be a passing tone, like in this bass line where it's just walking up to the next chord tone, or it can be a chord tone that is from a chord that isn't diatonic, it could be borrowing from minor, etc.

The longer answer is if you want to get into funk/blues/soul/gospel- IE the Black American musical tradition, you aren't always going to be able to apply "inside the box" thinking. IMO the best analogy here is slang in language- It's not always grammatically (music theoretically) *correct*. That's what makes a bro from E St Louis sound different than a Harvard eng teacher- and that's also similar to what makes DeBarge sound different than Yanni.

In my view, pedagogical music theory suffers from a pretty bad case of 'white privilege'...which is to say that if you go buy a random music theory book, or google music theory etc, it's gonna be teaching you to sound more like Yanni then DeBarge. It's the same language though, so you can still learn from that book, just don't get too hung up on *the rules*. Learning by ear is the best thing you can do along with finding some people to jam with who come from this musical tradition.
this was and is a powerful post brotha man. ✊
Old 3rd September 2018
  #34
Gear Nut
 
TL Music's Avatar
Cool tune!

Most theory taught in conservatories tends to be an analysis of music styles created predominantly in Europe during the "Common Practice Period". That is music from roughly 1650 to 1900. Representative composers would include Bach, Beethoven, Tschaikovsy, etc.

During that time, composers shared many conventions of technique and style with regard to note choices, rhythmic patterns and other forms. Certain resolutions from dissonance were inevitable, and every piece had to have a key center, which every note choice revolved around. And, every piece had to end on that key note, known as the "tonic".

There are many problems with trying to analyze the El DeBarge song in those terms, as it was written long after the common practice period music had become unfashionable. In short, "It's Got To Be Real" is not going to neatly fit the traditional analysis.

In my experience, a huge number of R&B and Soul compositions, like "It's Got To Be Real", are built from a pentatonic scale. Melodies and basslines, too, will be drawn from and reference that pentatonic scale. Other notes can be added to the pentatonic scale as passing notes, or to create melodic tension.

The vocal melody in the verse of "It's Got To Be Real" comes strictly from the F minor pentatonic scale. All the notes he sings are either F, Ab, Bb, C or Eb.

For example, when DeBarge sings "and I'm so glad I found you baby", the notes go right up the scale: Bb, C, Eb, F, Ab, C, Eb, F, Ab. It's straight up scale, except the melody skips the second Bb.

Because the song's melody is built on the F minor pentatonic scale, most professional transcriptions of the song would write the sheet music with a key signature with four flats, basically F minor. That's the closest fit to a common practice key. However, "It's Got to be Real" is not really in F minor in a common practice sense. Neither the melody or the chords move and resolve in a way that fits with those rules.

Also in my experience, most R&B and Soul music will accompany pentatonic melodies with complex chords, each chord having four or more notes. Plain major and minor triads, the backbone of Common Practice Period music and a lot of world folk music, is frequently not considered rich enough sounding in R&B.

To my ears, the chords to the verse of "It's Got To Be Real" are:

Bbm7(add 11) G7#5 C minor7 F7


Two of the chords fit in the F minor key signature: Bbm11 and C minor7. The other two chords include just a couple notes not in the key signature. The G7#5 has a B natural, and F7 has an A natural. So again, most pro sheet music would have the key signature written with four flats, as overall most of the elements of the chords fit in that mode. However, the chord progression is not operating under the conventions of common practice period music and is definitely not following the "rules" of F minor.

As a side note, chords like these were first written down a lot in the late 1800s. French and Russian composers like Debussy and Scriabin used those sounds in some of their pieces. Starting in the 1920s, Jazz musicians and composers like Art Tatum, Duke Ellington, Dizzy Gillespie and Bill Evans incorporated similar chords to the ones from France and Russia and brilliantly developed a number of conventions that would be found in Jazz harmony.
Old 3rd September 2018
  #35
Gear Nut
 
TL Music's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by SOUND BOMBING View Post
The first person i ever askdd said f minor years ago
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike.r View Post
Well I can very well play the F minor pentatonic to it. :P
I totally agree. See my tl;dr post above.
Old 13th September 2018
  #36
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by TL Music View Post
Cool tune!

Most theory taught in conservatories tends to be an analysis of music styles created predominantly in Europe during the "Common Practice Period". That is music from roughly 1650 to 1900. Representative composers would include Bach, Beethoven, Tschaikovsy, etc.

During that time, composers shared many conventions of technique and style with regard to note choices, rhythmic patterns and other forms. Certain resolutions from dissonance were inevitable, and every piece had to have a key center, which every note choice revolved around. And, every piece had to end on that key note, known as the "tonic".

There are many problems with trying to analyze the El DeBarge song in those terms, as it was written long after the common practice period music had become unfashionable. In short, "It's Got To Be Real" is not going to neatly fit the traditional analysis.

In my experience, a huge number of R&B and Soul compositions, like "It's Got To Be Real", are built from a pentatonic scale. Melodies and basslines, too, will be drawn from and reference that pentatonic scale. Other notes can be added to the pentatonic scale as passing notes, or to create melodic tension.

The vocal melody in the verse of "It's Got To Be Real" comes strictly from the F minor pentatonic scale. All the notes he sings are either F, Ab, Bb, C or Eb.

For example, when DeBarge sings "and I'm so glad I found you baby", the notes go right up the scale: Bb, C, Eb, F, Ab, C, Eb, F, Ab. It's straight up scale, except the melody skips the second Bb.

Because the song's melody is built on the F minor pentatonic scale, most professional transcriptions of the song would write the sheet music with a key signature with four flats, basically F minor. That's the closest fit to a common practice key. However, "It's Got to be Real" is not really in F minor in a common practice sense. Neither the melody or the chords move and resolve in a way that fits with those rules.

Also in my experience, most R&B and Soul music will accompany pentatonic melodies with complex chords, each chord having four or more notes. Plain major and minor triads, the backbone of Common Practice Period music and a lot of world folk music, is frequently not considered rich enough sounding in R&B.

To my ears, the chords to the verse of "It's Got To Be Real" are:

Bbm7(add 11) G7#5 Cm7 F7


Two of the chords fit in the F minor key signature: Bbm11 and Cm7. The other two chords include just a couple notes not in the key signature. The G7#5 has a B natural, and F7 has an A natural. So again, most pro sheet music would have the key signature written with four flats, as overall most of the elements of the chords fit in that mode. However, the chord progression is not operating under the conventions of common practice period music and is definitely not following the "rules" of F minor.

As a side note, chords like these were first written down a lot in the late 1800s. French and Russian composers like Debussy and Scriabin used those sounds in some of their pieces. Starting in the 1920s, Jazz musicians and composers like Art Tatum, Duke Ellington, Dizzy Gillespie and Bill Evans incorporated similar chords to the ones from France and Russia and brilliantly developed a number of conventions that would be found in Jazz harmony.
Great info. Thanks
Post Reply

Welcome to the Gearslutz Pro Audio Community!

Registration benefits include:
  • The ability to reply to and create new discussions
  • Access to members-only giveaways & competitions
  • Interact with VIP industry experts in our guest Q&As
  • Access to members-only sub forum discussions
  • Access to members-only Chat Room
  • Get INSTANT ACCESS to the world's best private pro audio Classifieds for only USD $20/year
  • Promote your eBay auctions and Reverb.com listings for free
  • Remove this message!
You need an account to post a reply. Create a username and password below and an account will be created and your post entered.


 
 
Slide to join now Processing…
Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Forum Jump
Forum Jump