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How to modulate

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How to modulate Empty How to modulate

Post by pianohama Mon May 19, 2008 9:15 pm

basically diatonic modulation is that a certain triad not only exists in one key but in many different keys. This triad has a different function in every key it exists
For example we take the triad F-major(F-A-C). This triad is the subdominant(IV) in the key C-Major and it is the tonic(I) in F-Major

we can take this triad as a modulator from C-Major to F-Major or vice versa. The principle is just that we reinterpret this function from the subdominant in C-Major to the tonic in F-Major

Before you modulate you have to establish the key in that you start. Then you modulate to the next key and after that you have to establish this new key again with a cadence for example
It is really imporant to establish the "start-key" because you need a tonal centre to reinterpret the modulator chord(Fmaj). It is also important to establish the new key because otherwise it is no modulation...

To establish the startkey C-Major you can use the cadence C(tonic) - F(subdominant) - G7(dominant) - C(tonic again)
Now everyone hears that the tonal centre is the C and so we have established this key.
After that you have to play the subdominant F again so that you can reinterpret this chord to the tonic of F-Major. To use this chord now as modulator you have to play the dominant of the key F-Major and then the tonic again(F-C7-F).
By doing so you showed that C-Major is no longer the tonic. The last step is now to establish F-Major as the new tonic. Here you can use the authentic cadence again: F(I) - Bb(IV) - C(V) - F

You could also use the triad C as modulator chord. It's the tonic of the key C-Major and the dominant of F-Major...This way would be better than the one I explained. But you just have to understand the principle and then you can look yourself which chord you can reinterpret


Last edited by pianohama on Mon May 19, 2008 11:38 pm; edited 1 time in total
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How to modulate Empty Re: How to modulate

Post by Admin Andrew Mon May 19, 2008 11:30 pm

Very good explanation! WHen you discribe using the F A C chord as your "Modulating chord" I was actually taught that it's called a pivot chord. A pivot chord is a chord that can be played and be in both the keys you are going to be using.

Say you're going to G major, if you play a G chord, you're using G as the V dominate chord if you're thinking in terms of C major, but also at the same time it's the Tonic chord in G major, so it over laps in both keys, this creates a smooth transition Smile and you're right, usually you don't hear the key change until the dominate chord of the new key because it introduces an accidental that wasn't in the previous key.

So you're bang on about everything! Good job! Maybe I should make you a "Piano Teacher" rank since you seem to be getting pretty knowledgeable Wink it's a special rank i have assigned for people who want to make it their job to educate other people in the forum. Let me know if you're interested!

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How to modulate Empty Re: How to modulate

Post by Thomandy Fri May 30, 2008 9:15 am

This I must read closer!! I got to learn how to modulate, and do different transposes ++
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How to modulate Empty Re: How to modulate

Post by VictorCS Fri May 30, 2008 9:47 am

I think Andrew should do a video of this modulate thingy, because what I read here is cryptic to me.....

After closer reading I understood, so Andrew dont need to do...
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How to modulate Empty Re: How to modulate

Post by Thomandy Sun Jun 01, 2008 5:54 pm

Okay, now I ndersoud aswell!!! But I was wondering. Is it possible to use the modulation formula to modulate two keys?!

That would mean that the first modulation accourding to what you write wont be a real modulation!

What I mean is can I go from the keysignature to another key, without establishing the new key, just jump un to the third key and then establish! I guess its allowed if it sounds good, but maby not theoretically right?!
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How to modulate Empty Re: How to modulate

Post by pianohama Sun Jun 01, 2008 6:12 pm

thomandy wrote:Okay, now I ndersoud aswell!!! But I was wondering. Is it possible to use the modulation formula to modulate two keys?!

That would mean that the first modulation accourding to what you write wont be a real modulation!

What I mean is can I go from the keysignature to another key, without establishing the new key, just jump un to the third key and then establish! I guess its allowed if it sounds good, but maby not theoretically right?!

You mean just start playing in another key Smile ? I think that would sound rather bad actually ^^
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Post by VictorCS Sun Jun 01, 2008 6:29 pm

Bad sound is music to geek
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Post by Thomandy Sun Jun 01, 2008 6:38 pm

pianohama wrote:
thomandy wrote:Okay, now I ndersoud aswell!!! But I was wondering. Is it possible to use the modulation formula to modulate two keys?!

That would mean that the first modulation accourding to what you write wont be a real modulation!

What I mean is can I go from the keysignature to another key, without establishing the new key, just jump un to the third key and then establish! I guess its allowed if it sounds good, but maby not theoretically right?!

You mean just start playing in another key Smile ? I think that would sound rather bad actually ^^

No of course not what I meant Wink hehehe
If you use the modulatioprosses, but skips the establishment in the second key and modulate further trough and establishes the third key Razz If you understand?
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How to modulate Empty Re: How to modulate

Post by pianohama Sun Jun 01, 2008 6:47 pm

thomandy wrote:
pianohama wrote:
thomandy wrote:Okay, now I ndersoud aswell!!! But I was wondering. Is it possible to use the modulation formula to modulate two keys?!

That would mean that the first modulation accourding to what you write wont be a real modulation!

What I mean is can I go from the keysignature to another key, without establishing the new key, just jump un to the third key and then establish! I guess its allowed if it sounds good, but maby not theoretically right?!

You mean just start playing in another key Smile ? I think that would sound rather bad actually ^^

No of course not what I meant Wink hehehe
If you use the modulatioprosses, but skips the establishment in the second key and modulate further trough and establishes the third key Razz If you understand?

I don't know actually, why dont you try it Smile ?
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Post by Thomandy Sun Jun 01, 2008 6:49 pm

Hehe Smile Im probably crappy at explaining this since Im on deep water Razz
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Post by pianohama Sun Jun 01, 2008 7:00 pm

thomandy wrote:Hehe Smile Im probably crappy at explaining this since Im on deep water Razz


Well you say "if its allowed".. Anything is allowed Smile as long as it sounds good Smile Its music, not math...
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Post by Thomandy Sun Jun 01, 2008 7:15 pm

pianohama wrote:
thomandy wrote:Hehe Smile Im probably crappy at explaining this since Im on deep water Razz


Well you say "if its allowed".. Anything is allowed Smile as long as it sounds good Smile Its music, not math...

True Smile
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Post by Phobik2000 Sun Jun 01, 2008 9:48 pm

pianohama wrote:
thomandy wrote:Hehe Smile Im probably crappy at explaining this since Im on deep water Razz


Well you say "if its allowed".. Anything is allowed Smile as long as it sounds good Smile Its music, not math...

You could probably break this down with math, but it mite go over someone who isn't familiar with Systems&Signals analisys. Wink
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Post by pianohama Mon Jun 02, 2008 9:44 pm

thomandy wrote:
pianohama wrote:
thomandy wrote:Hehe Smile Im probably crappy at explaining this since Im on deep water Razz


Well you say "if its allowed".. Anything is allowed Smile as long as it sounds good Smile Its music, not math...

True Smile

Actually there is another way to modulate which I think sounds GREAT if used correctly. You take the chords and once u get to a minor chord in the scale, play the chord but major instead Smile Sounds awesome, and from there u can take it to the new key you have created Smile
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How to modulate Empty Re: How to modulate

Post by armughan Mon Jul 07, 2008 4:53 pm

nicely explained, same as i was taught....but i am not sure on how to modulate in counterpoint....do you keep messing around until you find a smooth transition or there is a specific way to throw those accidentals in there Suspect

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Post by Thomandy Wed Jul 16, 2008 12:41 pm

Thats a Things I thought about. If one dont know this theory, and gona compose, you actually could modulate withouth knowing it and ruening the piece for yourselfe without knowing why the piece doesnt sound complete at the end Razz hehe
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How to modulate Empty Re: How to modulate

Post by maestoso Sat Aug 23, 2008 12:11 am

Hi guys,

this is interesting and talks about modulation to "related keys". e.g. F major is the tonic key, then you modulate to the subdominant which is Bb or to the dominant, C. I've also been studying modulation to remote keys, when you go to a completely different and often unexpected key. A brilliant example is Shubert's Die Winterreise where the music is in D minor then abruptly modulates to D major (completely unrelated key even though they are both "D" ;-) sounds awesome!

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Post by nipponman21 Wed Oct 15, 2008 4:32 pm

This is interesting. Can we get a video of this being done in practice?
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