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Topic: Is there a technical (music theory) term for this?

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  1. #1

    Is there a technical (music theory) term for this?

    Just out of curiosity...
    I was just playing with some chord progressions and I wondered about something I've done sort of instinctively since I was a little kid banging on the keyboard. I call it "squeeze and stretch". The idea is to move from one chord to the next by either squeezing some of the notes closer together or stretching them further apart.

    Here's an example:



    I'm sure there must be a technical term for this method. Just wondering if one of you theory gurus can tell me what it is.
    --gary shannon
    Spooks! - The Movie

  2. #2

  3. #3

    Re: Is there a technical (music theory) term for this?

    Quote Originally Posted by rbowser-
    Yeah, Gary! The technical music theory term for that is:

    Squeezestretcherato!

    Randy B.
    (rbowser)
    LOL. I should have known!
    --gary shannon
    Spooks! - The Movie

  4. #4

    Re: Is there a technical (music theory) term for this?

    Quote Originally Posted by fiziwig
    Just out of curiosity...
    I was just playing with some chord progressions and I wondered about something I've done sort of instinctively since I was a little kid banging on the keyboard. I call it "squeeze and stretch". The idea is to move from one chord to the next by either squeezing some of the notes closer together or stretching them further apart.

    Here's an example:



    I'm sure there must be a technical term for this method. Just wondering if one of you theory gurus can tell me what it is.
    The first chord is a G seven chod in root position. the next one is a C seven in third inversion. The third chord is an F seven in root position, and the fourth is a b seven in third inversion. It is also a diminished seven chord.

    squeeze and stretch is quite funny.
    Samantha Penigar
    http://www.myspace.com/samanthapenigar

    http://www.northernsounds.com/forum/...p?userid=13306

    Dream it! Then Do it! Good things come to those who work while they wait. [COLOR=purple]Persistence[/COLO

  5. #5

    Re: Is there a technical (music theory) term for this?

    Hi Fizi - Another name for this is the "Don't be afraid to try anything that pops into your head, because it just might produce musically interesting results" technique.

    This technique is employed by curious and creative musicians everywhere.

    Did you notice that in your first example you have a circle of fifths? The root tones (going down) are: G C F B E A D G C The F-B is a tritone, but that's an exception to keep it in the key.

    In your next 4 bar example, the first two chords are Cmn Emn. So you have a root position minor chord moving up a major 3rd. The notes move as little as possible, so you end up with a second-inversion Emn.

    Now you just repeat this two chord pattern a 1/2 step below the Cmn, on Bmn. I'm sure you've discovered that you can just keep repeating this pattern all the way down the chromatic scale and it will sound good. Try adding a major 7th (and/or 9th) above the root of each chord. Or a major or minor 6th.

    Keep in mind that your second example will get you a rap on the knuckles in Harmony 101 class, because it's constantly changing keys and is essentially atonal (atonal doesn't have to sound dissonant). On the other hand, you'll hear such progressions in pretty much every Hollywood sci-fi, horror, or fantasy movie. Also in classical music going back a hundred years or more.

    - k
    "An artist is someone who produces things that people don't need to have, but that he - for some reason - thinks it would be a good idea to give them."

    - Andy Warhol

  6. #6

    Re: Is there a technical (music theory) term for this?

    I just played through the chords and they are now the beginning of a new song.
    Samantha Penigar
    http://www.myspace.com/samanthapenigar

    http://www.northernsounds.com/forum/...p?userid=13306

    Dream it! Then Do it! Good things come to those who work while they wait. [COLOR=purple]Persistence[/COLO

  7. #7

    Re: Is there a technical (music theory) term for this?

    Quote Originally Posted by Samantha Penigar
    The first chord is a G seven chod in root position. the next one is a C seven in third inversion. The third chord is an F seven in root position, and the fourth is a b seven in third inversion. It is also a diminished seven chord.

    squeeze and stretch is quite funny.
    I know naming chords wasn’t the essence of this thread, but since Samantha started in that direction, I’ll add my dime’s worth.

    I’ve always found chord theory fascinating, and yet, at times a little annoying.

    So often the bottom note in a chord will change its identity (or hide its identity). Take for instance a C6 chord. Stacked from bottom to top would read C E G A - thus, a solid C6 chord. However, take the top note “A” and place it on the bottom of the stack, and it becomes an Am7 chord (A C E G) - same notes, different order, different identity.

    Anyway, taking the first three measures in Gary’s example, I would label the chords simply (1) G7, (2) CMaj7 (2nd. Inversion), (3) FMaj7, (4) Dm6 1st inversion (it could be considered a half dim7, however the term dim7 is accepted today in its most common usage, which would be a full-dim7, thus, Bdim7 would be identified as B D F Ab, (5) Em7, (6)Am7 (2nd. inversion) or c6 (1st. inversion), (7) Dm7 (8) G7 (2nd.Inversion), and finally (9) CMaj7 (root).

    Anyway, it’s so easy making mistakes naming chords. One slip of a half-step anywhere along the road can make an embarrassing presumption.

    Fascinating, and yet a little annoying.

    What did I just say? Oh yeah, forget it.

    Best, John
    Stop analyzing; just compose the damn thing!

  8. #8

    Re: Is there a technical (music theory) term for this?

    Quote Originally Posted by klassical
    Hi Fizi - Another name for this is the "Don't be afraid to try anything that pops into your head, because it just might produce musically interesting results" technique.

    This technique is employed by curious and creative musicians everywhere.

    Did you notice that in your first example you have a circle of fifths? The root tones (going down) are: G C F B E A D G C The F-B is a tritone, but that's an exception to keep it in the key.
    That first example is basically (with a few Bb, Ab and Eb notes thrown in, and not in that exact order) what I used to play with Errol Garner's "Misty" when I was a kid. Start on the C7 and bounce up to the G, then squeeze and stretch down and it harmonizes Misty perfectly:



    Quote Originally Posted by klassical
    In your next 4 bar example, the first two chords are Cmn Emn. So you have a root position minor chord moving up a major 3rd. The notes move as little as possible, so you end up with a second-inversion Emn.

    Now you just repeat this two chord pattern a 1/2 step below the Cmn, on Bmn. I'm sure you've discovered that you can just keep repeating this pattern all the way down the chromatic scale and it will sound good. Try adding a major 7th (and/or 9th) above the root of each chord. Or a major or minor 6th.

    Keep in mind that your second example will get you a rap on the knuckles in Harmony 101 class, because it's constantly changing keys and is essentially atonal (atonal doesn't have to sound dissonant). On the other hand, you'll hear such progressions in pretty much every Hollywood sci-fi, horror, or fantasy movie. Also in classical music going back a hundred years or more.

    - k
    Yes, I noticed that it cycles back around. Mathematically, it HAS to. The pigeon-hole principal: There's only so many keys you can end up in so they cycle must repeat.

    Interesting you should mention the horror movie connection. I was playing with the second one in connection with a cue for my make believe movie score "Spooks!".

    Quote Originally Posted by Samantha Penigar
    I just played through the chords and they are now the beginning of a new song.
    Cool! Glad you could find a use for them.

    Quote Originally Posted by Johnny-Boy
    I’ve always found chord theory fascinating, and yet, at times a little annoying.

    So often the bottom note in a chord will change its identity (or hide its identity). Take for instance a C6 chord. Stacked from bottom to top would read C E G A - thus, a solid C6 chord. However, take the top note “A” and place it on the bottom of the stack, and it becomes an Am7 chord (A C E G) - same notes, different order, different identity.
    Interesting. I can usually figure out the correct name for a chord, but on the other hand, I'm more interested in the sound of the chord. Still, it's nice to be able to talk about chords, which one cannot do without naming them.
    --gary shannon
    Spooks! - The Movie

  9. #9

    Re: Is there a technical (music theory) term for this?

    The only time I consider chord names is when I'm preparing a song manuscript. Yes, as in my signature, I'm more interested in what I'm hearing, rather than analyzing the music.

    Best, John
    Stop analyzing; just compose the damn thing!

  10. #10

    Re: Is there a technical (music theory) term for this?

    Gary...

    Try this on MISTY...assuming you're in C, the two pickup notes are G and E.

    The next melody note is a B dotted half...Harmonize beats 1 and 2 with a Cdim (C, Eb, Gb) then move to the Cmaj7 on beat 3. The Cdim(maj7) is a nice tension & adds some interest to an otherwise static harmony.
    It's actually a B chord (D#=Eb, F#=Gb, B melody note) with a C in the bass. Tasty if you don't dwell on it. You then "stretch" the Eb and Gb into E and G, as you hold the B, to go from Cdim to Cmaj7

    On your first example the LH chords in bars 1--3 are

    BAR 1: G7, Cmaj7, Dmin9, G9. (The Dmin9 could also be Fmaj7, but I'd call it Dmi9 to preserve the common ii-V progression--Dmin9-G9)(try Db7 as beat 4!)

    BAR 2: Emin7 (or rootless Cmaj9),Amin7,Dmin7,G7 (Again, I'd call the first beat Emin7 to preserve the cycle--E A D G) To add more variety, you might try A7 instead of Amin7 as beat 2 (A7 has a C# to add some variety)

    BAR 3 CMaj7...so pretty much around the cycle!

    Note to all: It's important to spell out the TYPE of seventh present in a chord:

    Cmaj7=C E G B (a tonic chord) (Cmaj9=C E G B D)
    C7=C E G Bb (a dominant chord)
    Cmin7=C Eb G Bb (a ii chord in Bb--supertonic)
    Cdim7=C Eb Gb Bbb (but we'll accept C Eb Gb A)
    etc...

    You're using what I'd call closed voicing throughout with very parsimonious voice leading. Nice. Kinda close to Bill Evans without altered dominants (7#5, 7b5, 7#9, or 7b9, etc). Even though your hands are "stretching and squeezing," they are doing so to keep the voicing closed.
    To open it up a bit, try dropping the second voice an octave a la Nat Cole or George Shearing.

    Snor
    Jim Williams
    Professor of Capitalism
    N9EJR
    Indianapolis Brass Choir
    All Your Bass Sus&Short Are Belong to Us.

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