Music Theory – 0028

Well, I went and did it. For the past week I’ve studied online reviews and I ordered a new video camera. My wife found it very stressful to stand there holding my iPhone to capture video while I played. I think she was afraid of moving and messing it up. It actually came out crisp and clear except that I cropped it too small and then WordPress blew it up and made it blurry. I’ll fix it once I receive the camera and figure out how to use it. It is the Canon Vixia HF G20 if you want to check it out online. Here’s a picture of it before I get on to the A-section (verse) of “Finding Diane”.

Canon Vixia HF G20

You’ve heard the intro last time so let’s listen to and then look at the score for the A-section. I start with the last two measures of the intro so you can feel the V – i movement transitioning into the “verse”. (There is a still picture instead of video.)

And here is the score for this section:


The bass clef notes should look very familiar to you, at least the pattern. Hmmm, maybe not since everyone seems to be way behind me as of this writing. Go at your own speed.

Once the verse starts it is the same chords as the intro. Two measures of an A Minor chord, two measures of a G Major chord, two measures of the A Minor chord again and then the last two measures are different. Both of those measures are E7 chords, the major V of A. After what is visible on the score I fade out starting the B-section or the “chorus”. So the bass clef is pretty basic stuff except for the second to the last measure where I have the G# as the lowest note and then in the last measure the E is the lowest note. Both are members of the same chord but putting the third of the chord — the G# — in the bass as the lowest note smoothes out the movement into that chord and then I invert it to root position before moving forward to the next section.

What is most important is the little characteristic bit of melody, the “hook” in music biz speak, that makes it catchy. The first measure of the treble clef is that hook. Notice how that repeats in the third measure except it is a step lower to better fit the G Major chord. At the beginning of the second line this little phrase starts the same with the first two notes but jumps in the opposite direction. This keeps the repetition novel.

Also notice how that first note note of the hook (motif for you educated types) starts on a note that is not part of the chord. That is the “extra” note outside the chord that I used in the intro. It doesn’t belong in the A Minor chord even though it is part of the A Minor scale. This creates a dissonance that lasts a moment and then resolves by going to a more consonant note which is any part of the A Minor chord. To go with the story, these dissonant notes are moments of emotional pain which fade over time. This happens three times in this verse and it is a common theme throughout the piece. Remember, this is a rondo:

A – B – A – C – A – B – A

so this A-section is going to repeat four times throughout the entire piece. Tomorrow, the B-section (chorus) will have a different character.

3 thoughts on “Music Theory – 0028

  1. I like it because I get the more up close and personal view of where you work. the video only appeared as a still frame though… you probably knew that? Love that melody!!!

      • I really was afraid that people would misunderstand or just skip over it because it is just a picture. A temporary issue I will correct. I suppose I could use my webcam in the meantime, promising better quality in the future. I do use it now for Skype lessons.

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