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Topic: Arabic themes

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  1. #1

    Arabic themes

    Dear Fellow Orchestrators,

    I have a simple question. I am a novie in this field STILL, and i want to know is there a special way and special key/chords to build arabic melodies like Harry-Gregson Williams did in "The Kingdom of Heaven"? Are they in different scales, modes?

    And by the way, how about those adventures Carribian melodies?

    If anyone could help me, i would appreciate it.

    Thank you very much,
    Dean Milenkovic

  2. #2
    Moderator/Developer Brian2112's Avatar
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    Re: Arabic themes

    Hmm didn't see that flick...

    But "Arabic" music (and also Indian, Persian, etc.) often use a form of Hungarian Minor, I believe. Often it is minor going up the scale and major coming down.

    In the key of C going up...

    C,D,Eb,F,G,Ab,B,C - [Note that B is NOT flat]

    In the key of C coming back down...

    C,B, Ab,G,F,E,D,C - [Note that B and E are not flat]


    Often in "Arabic" music the 3rd degree of the scale is ommited completely - making it cool because you can harmonize the melody major OR minor.

    Anyone feel free to correct me.
    Hope this helps.


    ...2112
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  3. #3

    Re: Arabic themes

    Another very useful scale is: C Db E F G Ab B

    They are the first 7 notes of Misirlou - a very recognizable melody with an Arabic flavor. The surf-rock version by Dick Dale was the theme to the movie "Pulp Fiction". But sung or played in a more traditional Middle Eastern setting, it has a very strong ethnic flavor. Great scale.

  4. #4

    Re: Arabic themes

    Quote Originally Posted by Dargason
    Another very useful scale is: C Db E F G Ab B

    They are the first 7 notes of Misirlou - a very recognizable melody with an Arabic flavor. The surf-rock version by Dick Dale was the theme to the movie "Pulp Fiction". But sung or played in a more traditional Middle Eastern setting, it has a very strong ethnic flavor. Great scale.
    That is the scale my Garritan Solo Stradivari Demo, "Arabian Star" was based on. I LOVE this scale!!! It allows for SO MANY places to go thematically. those lowered seconds and sixths really help give you places to modulate.



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  5. #5
    Moderator/Developer Brian2112's Avatar
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    Red face Re: Arabic themes

    Ern, I must admit, with a not insignificant amount of embarrassment, that I just got the joke with the pic of the scales. Wow, I'm slow this month/year.
    "So what if some parts of life are a crap shoot? Get out there and shoot the crap." -- Neil Peart
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  6. #6

    Re: Arabic themes

    From the handy, dandy guitar Grimoire:

    Persian scale: C, Db, E, F, Gb, Ab, B

    I know that I have a book around here that has lot's of exotic scales!! I just can't find it!!!

    One way to get a western scale to sound exotic: The normal practice is to "bend" a note of the scale up to another note within the scale. (insert slide or gliss for instruments that do not bend notes) Anyway, "bend" from outside the scale... say that you are playing in Cmaj... and the melody calls for a G and then an A... you could bend that G up to the A, or you play the G... and then a G#... bending that up to the A.

    I am sure that I did not explain that well, but on the electric guitar it sounds ssssooo cool and exotic!!!

    If I find those exotic scale books, then I'll post them here.
    Paul

    Prowland the posting Ninja

  7. #7

    Re: Arabic themes

    Excelent. Thank you very much for posting so many different ideas.
    So PROWLAND did you find that book? I could surely use help of something like that!

    Thank you once more!

    Dean Milenkovic

  8. #8

    Re: Arabic themes

    Quote Originally Posted by Brian2112
    Ern, I must admit, with a not insignificant amount of embarrassment, that I just got the joke with the pic of the scales. Wow, I'm slow this month/year.
    Oh, ha ha ha - I get it now - what a laugh. I've been staring at the pic trying to figure out what it has to do with an arabic scale - what a laugh! Boy I am slow. Well, I was blonde as a little boy - maybe the genes are still there!

  9. #9
    Senior Member Styxx's Avatar
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    Re: Arabic themes


    Arabic themes, eh?
    Styxx

  10. #10

    Re: Arabic themes

    Hahahahahaha,
    luckily i got it the first time. Even though im foreign. LOL. Nice animation there Styxx!!! Just the girl has a dog face.
    Now that i know which "scales" to use i am "flying" to my vehicle to get my laptop, which is my "Car Pet", so i can compose some music.

    How about Carribian?

    Also what instruments give the best combiantion for Eastern Music? Etno, or you can do it just with strings, ney flute and sitar.

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