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How to harmonize this melody?

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  • How to harmonize this melody?

    And by harmonize I mean select the correct chords....

    This goes back 20+ years but for some reason I’m thinking about it.

    Melody goes: G-D E-F#-D E-F#-D C-D

    We just played power chords matching the melody. What’s a more “sophisticated” way to handle it? Or maybe just the “correct” chord to play over the F# as G, C, D and Emin are just fine. Was i “borrowing” from G Lydian for the F#5? (Half diminished sounds ridiculous in a pop punk format... )

    What do you think?
    Oh no.....


    Oh Yeah!

  • #2
    You can go for whatever level of complexity that you want. How many bars does that sequence of notes cover? How many beats do you want per chord change? This is a pop punk tune?

    Standard changes usually use 1 chord for 1 or more bars. When you use more than 1 chord per bar, the sequence gets more complicated or 'advanced' sounding. Several changes per bar are also used for punctuations of sections. Until you arrive at a different chord for every melody note which is chord melody.
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    • #3
      I’m wondering if really this portion is just a I-V-vi-V-iv-V-IV-V with the melody implying an Emin/add9 as a “passing tone” on the minor iv.

      I should modify my post, the song exists I’m wondering how I describe what was written and performed. It’s not chord melody, it’s just pop punk.

      This song existed before I joined the band, and this one note always bothered me. (Clearly, since I’m thinking about it 20 years later)
      Last edited by PFDarkside; 02-21-2021, 08:57 PM.
      Oh no.....


      Oh Yeah!

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      • #4
        Well ya you're gonna want to use simple chords for pop punk. Yes, a lot of times every melody note doesn't have to dictate what the chord player will play, it can just be a cool extension in the melody and not in the chord player's chords. Still can't imagine how the melody fits over the chord sequence without allotting bars.
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        • #5
          Yeah, if you can post the bars that the notes are in (or ideally music notation/sound clip) then it'll be a lot easier to give you suggestions. As it stands now, the notes you're providing fit in E minor, G major, B phrygian, C lydian, or D mixolydian . . . so you should be able to use a chord progression built from any of those modes underneath it. (You have a C natural, so I wouldn't expect that this is a piece in G lydian - that would have a C#).
          Join me in the fight against muscular atrophy!

          Originally posted by Douglas Adams
          This planet has - or rather had - a problem, which was this: most of the people living on it were unhappy for pretty much of the time. Many solutions were suggested for this problem, but most of these were largely concerned with the movements of small green pieces of paper, which is odd because on the whole it wasn't the small green pieces of paper that were unhappy.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by GuitarStv View Post
            Yeah, if you can post the bars that the notes are in (or ideally music notation/sound clip) then it'll be a lot easier to give you suggestions. As it stands now, the notes you're providing fit in E minor, G major, B phrygian, C lydian, or D mixolydian . . . so you should be able to use a chord progression built from any of those modes underneath it. (You have a C natural, so I wouldn't expect that this is a piece in G lydian - that would have a C#).
            I’ll figure out a way to notate it, I’m on mobile. Think the literal easiest structure you could imagine that teenagers would write. Each bar is a chord except the “E/F# which each get half a bar, the chords are all power chords, and the vocal melody follows the root of the power chords.

            Chords, in 4/4. Each “|” is a measure line. Imagine every instance is a quarter note (strumming pattern is different, but for this purpose it can be quarter notes)

            | G5 (x4) | D5( x4) | E5 (x2) F#5 (x2) | D5 (x2) | E5 (x2) F#5 (x2) | D5 (x4) | C5 (x4) | D5 (x4) |

            The C# occurs on the F# power chord, then back to C natural for the C5 chord.


            Is there a free online notation software?
            Oh no.....


            Oh Yeah!

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            • #7
              Putting it in Noteflight.
              Oh no.....


              Oh Yeah!

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              • #8
                Originally posted by PFDarkside View Post

                I’ll figure out a way to notate it, I’m on mobile. Think the literal easiest structure you could imagine that teenagers would write. Each bar is a chord except the “E/F# which each get half a bar, the chords are all power chords, and the vocal melody follows the root of the power chords.

                Chords, in 4/4. Each “|” is a measure line. Imagine every instance is a quarter note (strumming pattern is different, but for this purpose it can be quarter notes)

                | G5 (x4) | D5( x4) | E5 (x2) F#5 (x2) | D5 (x2) | E5 (x2) F#5 (x2) | D5 (x4) | C5 (x4) | D5 (x4) |

                The C# occurs on the F# power chord, then back to C natural for the C5 chord.


                Is there a free online notation software?


                What if you just flat the 5th on the F#5? Then it would be working as a diminished vii and would make the song in G major.
                Join me in the fight against muscular atrophy!

                Originally posted by Douglas Adams
                This planet has - or rather had - a problem, which was this: most of the people living on it were unhappy for pretty much of the time. Many solutions were suggested for this problem, but most of these were largely concerned with the movements of small green pieces of paper, which is odd because on the whole it wasn't the small green pieces of paper that were unhappy.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by GuitarStv View Post



                  What if you just flat the 5th on the F#5? Then it would be working as a diminished vii and would make the song in G major.
                  It just sounds wrong then. Too complex for punk? maybe I’ve heard it the other way too many times?

                  Noteflight is pretty cool. Let me know if you can see it.

                  Click image for larger version

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                  Oh no.....


                  Oh Yeah!

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                  • #10
                    Based on that I would just notate it as D major (G Lydian), if I needed to improvise over it, I could just look at the key sig and not have to search out other accidentals since all the Cs are sharped. Of course, my bass clef is a bit rusty, so I may have missed something. Interesting that you chose to notate the power chords in bass clef, but that may be a limitation of the software to not be able to have to treble clefs(?).

                    We have some chord charts at church that are noted as G (or something, don't remember off the top of my head), but are actually G Mixolydian (b7), I have to remind myself of those, since it's only a chord chart don't notice the b7 until you play the chord and, or worse, do a run across it that sounds off.

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                    • #11
                      Cool, thank you. The interesting thing about playing with just power chords (especially in the punk rock, sliding shape style) is that you can unintentionally stumble upon some exotic implied chords if you were to include a third and seventh. As is, it’s just a fatter sounding riff. Usually “major” key riffing is in Mixolydian, solving that sharp fourth problem.

                      I’m brand new to this program, since then I’ve been able to split to a guitar treble clef and a vocal treble clef. (For the purposes of this I put it all on the full piano clef).

                      Oh no.....


                      Oh Yeah!

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