Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: Melbourne, FL 32940
Re: Tritone and Atonal
Here is one way to think of modes.
Playing the notes in order in C Major-
C D E F G A B
If you have a Chord structure in C Major and the overall feel of the music wants to come back to C, you are in C Major or C Ionian, the first mode.
Modes are about "tonal center", what feels or sounds like the Key!
If you play a C note the whole time while the chords are being played, you will notice it always sounds good and stands out.
If you move up to D-
D E F G A B C
Now you are in Dorian if the chord structure wants to resolve of come back to D.
So in effect D becomes 1 in the Dorian mode even though the notes still look like C Major on paper.
Modes are about what you hear and feel when a piece of music is being played.
Your average rock song wants everything to come back to 1 in the scale at many points.
You will hear the trem relative minor.
Every major scale has a relative minor.
On guitar it is very popular for people to play in E minor.
E minor is the relative minor of G Major.
If you look at the notes in a G Major scale and an E minor scale they are the same exact notes.
G Major - G A B C D E F#
E minor - E F# G A B C D
If you count the notes starting on G in G Major, the sixth note is E, thus E minor.
Minor is also known as Aeolian in the Greek Modes.
The distance between any of the two notes in these seven note scales have names called intervals.
On the guitar, start on any note, let's say G again.
On G go up on fret to G#, play the two notes back and forth G G#, G G#, G G#
You are playing a minor 2nd.
Now play G to A the same way back and forth G A, G A, G A
This is a Major 2nd.
The names go in order-
When you play G to the next higher G, this is called an
There are also names for notes past the Octive that are used in chord names mostly.
9, 11, 13 Chords
They are just the same notes repeated higher again.
Let me know if you have more question, I love talking about this stuff.