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-   -   Key of A major but tonality in D? (https://www.acousticguitarforum.com/forums/showthread.php?t=549103)

sirwhale 06-09-2019 03:33 PM

Key of A major but tonality in D?
 
Hi

I have just started looking at playing Lampedusa arranged by Derek Gripper:
https://youtu.be/-B0Oki7vS90

The tuning is DADF#BE, so it definitely looks to favour songs in D.

The key signature however portrays the song in the key of A major, with sharps on F, C, and G.

Then the song continually resolves to D throughout.

It is obviously Malian, and not traditionally Western, but can someone explain some of the theory here. Why the key of A but then a tonality of D.

Is it just a different scale being used for D with 1, 2, 3, 5b, 5, 6, 7?

Doug Young 06-09-2019 04:38 PM

D with 3 sharps would be lydian mode (the G#, a raised 4th). A fairly simple intro to modes:

https://www.classicfm.com/discover-m...musical-modes/

FwL 06-10-2019 01:09 AM

I have no idea what the score looks like, but that youtube performance is in D minor.

.

sirwhale 06-10-2019 01:19 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Doug Young (Post 6082490)
D with 3 sharps would be lydian mode (the G#, a raised 4th). A fairly simple intro to modes:

https://www.classicfm.com/discover-m...musical-modes/

Thanks

Can a mode begin on any note? Or is this lydian because it begins on D?

Doug Young 06-10-2019 02:13 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by sirwhale (Post 6082742)
Thanks

Can a mode begin on any note? Or is this lydian because it begins on D?

Modes are a rat-hole. It's best to read a few good articles about how they work - actually, you can read whole books, tho maybe others will pitch in to try to explain it all. It's not what note anything begins on, it's the tonal center. If a song is centered on "D", but has three sharps, then the tonality is D Lydian. It's the same as why a song is in D major or D minor. You could have a melody in the key of D major that doesn't start on D - and many do not. But if the tonal center is D major and the chords and scale notes are D major, then it's D Major, no matter what note the melody starts on.

Similarly, you can have a song that is D Lydian that doesn't start on D. But if the tonal center is D and you have a raised 4th, along with a major 3rd and 7th, it's the sound of Lydian. In spite of the focus on scales, modes are really about the harmony that is created by the notes being used.

As FWL noted, this tune doesn't sound like Lydian to me - at least at the beginning - I didn't listen to the whole thing (tho it's very nice.. bookmarked for later) I just answered your question about the key signature. Where are you seeing a score that shows three sharps?

frankmcr 06-10-2019 02:55 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by sirwhale (Post 6082742)

Can a mode begin on any note? Or is this lydian because it begins on D?

A mode is an interval pattern. The root note is irrelevant.

Example:

C dorian is C D E-flat F G A B-flat C
D dorian is D E F G A B C D

Flat the 3rd & the 7th, bingo you're playing the dorian mode.

sirwhale 06-10-2019 03:06 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Doug Young (Post 6082749)
Modes are a rat-hole. It's best to read a few good articles about how they work - actually, you can read whole books, tho maybe others will pitch in to try to explain it all. It's not what note anything begins on, it's the tonal center. If a song is centered on "D", but has three sharps, then the tonality is D Lydian. It's the same as why a song is in D major or D minor. You could have a melody in the key of D major that doesn't start on D - and many do not. But if the tonal center is D major and the chords and scale notes are D major, then it's D Major, no matter what note the melody starts on.

Similarly, you can have a song that is D Lydian that doesn't start on D. But if the tonal center is D and you have a raised 4th, along with a major 3rd and 7th, it's the sound of Lydian. In spite of the focus on scales, modes are really about the harmony that is created by the notes being used.

As FWL noted, this tune doesn't sound like Lydian to me - at least at the beginning - I didn't listen to the whole thing (tho it's very nice.. bookmarked for later) I just answered your question about the key signature. Where are you seeing a score that shows three sharps?

You can purchase the arrangement from Derek Gripper's site:
https://gumroad.com/derekgripper#

It doesn't have an image of the score, but I have purchased it and it definitely has those three sharps.

I am painstakingly going through the score to play the song (I can read the rhythm more or less, but not so the name of the notes) and those sharps fit nicely into the mood of the song. In fact, when I first had a go I was mistakenly using G major instead of G sharp until my mum (who is a pianist) corrected me, and that's when I got the surprise, because I felt it was in the tonality of D but the G# fitted so well in those phrases. I'd always associated that 4# as very tension creating, dissonant.

JonPR 06-10-2019 04:32 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by FwL (Post 6082740)
I have no idea what the score looks like, but that youtube performance is in D minor.

.

Just to clarify for anyone else ;), it kind of flips between F major and D minor. Sounds a little more F major to me, but that's maybe because F is the lowest bass note.

Scalewise, it has B natural in place of the Bb one would expect in either of those keys, so we could call it F lydian or D dorian, according to what we felt the overall key centre was.

In terms of the rest of the thread, he has a capo on 3, which is why it's being called D lydian instead of F lydian.
I.e., the 3-sharp key signature is what a horn player would call a transposition for Eb instruments.
The guitarist would - most likely - prefer to think of the key as "D" (or maybe Bm) because of the chord shapes and scale patterns used. That's why notation would be written in D lydian, because the capo position (the concert key) is actually irrelevant; it's the shapes and patterns that matter.

Obviously it's good to know his capo position, in case you were to try playing from the music with no capo and wondered why it sounded different. ;)

DaveKell 06-10-2019 10:13 AM

The incredible replies to this question make me feel like the absolute dumbest guitar picker on the planet. Iíve tried in the past to learn some of this. My head ends up feeling like I remember from high school when I failed algebra 1 & 2 twice. I hit a wall trying to absorb this stuff. This possibly explains why I love Keith Urban so much. Iíve read he has zero grasp of theory, even to the point of once asking Harry Connick Jr. what he meant by the 1, 4 and 5 chord! At least I know that. I have such respect and admiration for people who can instantly tell notes, sharps and flats, etc., in different modes. Always wished I had accomplished that myself!

RJVB 06-10-2019 02:11 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by sirwhale (Post 6082758)
I'd always associated that 4# as very tension creating, dissonant.

FWIW and probably irrelevant here, I picked up somewhere that many raised 4ths indicate modulation to the dominant.

JonPR 06-11-2019 05:29 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by RJVB (Post 6083194)
FWIW and probably irrelevant here, I picked up somewhere that many raised 4ths indicate modulation to the dominant.

Sometimes, yes. In this case, given a key of F major, a B natural might be used as part of a G7 or Bdim chord to resolve to C (the V or dominant of F). Very common in classical, jazz, even in pop and rock sometimes.
Not what's happening in this tune, though. ;)

RJVB 06-11-2019 06:20 AM

Undoubtedly but sadly I still appear to be very thick-skinned (impermťable we'd say here) to learning enough theory to deduce this sort of thing myself (ever since my teachers had the brilliant idea to give in when I didn't show much enthusiasm for the subject as a 11 or 12yo) :(


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