All my tracks are in A minor.
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Old 18-02-2013, 04:12 PM   #1
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All my tracks are in A minor.

I write all the chord progressions and melodies based on the A minor scale (/C major scale).

Will changing scale make a difference? It feels like it won't because all minor and major scales have the same intervals.

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Old 18-02-2013, 04:22 PM   #2
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Re: All my tracks are in A minor.

I'm confused.
A) Of course changing key and scale (of a song) will make a difference. In many ways.
B) Transposing A minor to Bb minor won't sound that much different.

Why don't you just try it and see (hear) for yourself??

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Old 18-02-2013, 04:24 PM   #3
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Re: All my tracks are in A minor.

I'm trying hard not to make any paedo-related jokes.

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Old 18-02-2013, 07:11 PM   #4
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Re: All my tracks are in A minor.

Yeah, I've noticed that I do the same.... maybe because C major / A minor are the "easiest" keys.
But hey, why don't you just transpose your songs to some other key and hear the difference yourself?
I also have used lot of pentatonic scale in my songs.

I've been currently working with it, trying to expand my know-how in music theory.
My studies in music theory was over ten years ago, so because I'm a drummer(and I only read rhythmic notes), I've forgotten almost all of it...

Maybe that's why I've been focusing on rhythmic impression.
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Old 18-02-2013, 07:24 PM   #5
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Re: All my tracks are in A minor.

It will definitely make a difference in terms of tonality. Trust me, listen to a piece in A minor, then listen to that same piece in F# minor. You can still tell it's the same piece, but it will have a different sound and feel to it. Because you've shifted the entire harmonic structure of that piece to a different register, and thus changed the tone and texture of it. I'm talking in circles, but basically, yes, it does make a difference. A-440 (A4) sounds different than A-220 (A3), does it not? Similar idea.

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Old 19-02-2013, 02:54 AM   #6
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Re: All my tracks are in A minor.

I think that different keys will have a different emotional effect on the listener because of their musical tastes.

Take a metal riff and play it in drop D, then play it in Drop A (7-string) and you'll find it sounds much heavier, even though it's the same riff!

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Old 19-02-2013, 03:03 AM   #7
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Re: All my tracks are in A minor.

the minor scales have a subconscious effect of making you feel a little down or depressed. I saw a video where this dude played the moonlit sonata in the minor and major scale, and it sounded noticably more 'upbeat' when he played it in major..

However, this all gets switched around if you use distortion like in heavy metal songs.. then the minor scales mysteriously have the opposite effect

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Old 19-02-2013, 01:15 PM   #8
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Re: All my tracks are in A minor.

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Originally Posted by hellscion View Post
the minor scales have a subconscious effect of making you feel a little down or depressed. I saw a video where this dude played the moonlit sonata in the minor and major scale, and it sounded noticably more 'upbeat' when he played it in major..

However, this all gets switched around if you use distortion like in heavy metal songs.. then the minor scales mysteriously have the opposite effect
One of my tutors did that once, was mad.

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Old 20-02-2013, 05:44 AM   #9
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Re: All my tracks are in A minor.

WHY??

is it because it's easier for you to come up stuff on a piano/guitar that way?

just transpose everything in your project until it sounds like it's in the right key for it's theme.

it's tricky though because there is a certain point where youll transpose the bass too low for it to sound right either by eq or by the fact that instruments have a particular set dynamic/key range, or too high and the lead/piano etc is too abrasive/tinny etc.
and sometimes you have to transpose different parts of the project differently up/down.

you have to experiment with all this so you can have more diversity across your tracks, and it's usually when you do these experiments that something better occurs, and usually as a mistake too.
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Old 20-02-2013, 01:18 PM   #10
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Re: All my tracks are in A minor.

this is like a writer wondering if he uses the letter 'T' too much..

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Old 20-02-2013, 01:47 PM   #11
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Re: All my tracks are in A minor.

I always have the same problem when I'm writing melodies on my midi keyboard. I don't actually play the piano so I tend to use positions I'm fluent in over and over again. I've "solved" the problem by not using a keyboard and writing my melodies manually, with a mouse (although this is a terrible solution, should learn to play the keys, really). If you're writing bass heavy music, the subbass should sound good in the key you've chosen, learned that tip from some hotshot producer's masterclass video.

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Old 27-02-2013, 09:42 AM   #12
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Re: All my tracks are in A minor.

Dude another thing to think of that if u plan to create a release with few track in it it better change keys between tracks for refreshment of the ear.

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Old 27-02-2013, 07:54 PM   #13
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Re: All my tracks are in A minor.

Although the distance between notes are the same there is a different... Atmosphere to a song in a different key...

Rock is arguably most commonly written in E Minor or A Minor because the most common tuning of a guitar means that both E and A are very easy to play and so, are ideal pedal-notes. A stupid amount of Iron Maiden songs are in these keys and I find it gets to the stage where one songs bleeds into the other after a while because there's no real variation.

I use C Major or Aminor more often than not as well when on a keyboard but it's not really surprising - if you're writing on a Piano or a Keyboard, it's easier to get quick results by hitting notes you know are safe (the white ones). Some of the other keys are harder to find and it can be quite demotivating trying to write something in a key with lots of accidentals when you have to blindly fumble through wrong notes to find the right ones.

If you're not too clued up on your scales (I'm not!) a good idea is on your MIDI keyboard, transpose up or a down a couple of semitones. You can still play in C Major/A Minor on your keyboard but it will actually be transmitted to your computer in a different key. This will help keep your music varied because otherwise they might all sound the same after a while.

And don't forget D Minor is the saddest of all keys!
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Old 27-02-2013, 08:25 PM   #14
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Re: All my tracks are in A minor.

Quote:
Originally Posted by hellscion View Post
this is like a writer wondering if he uses the letter 'T' too much..
It's actually more like a writer always writing in the same tense. Not that there's anything wrong with that.
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Old 27-02-2013, 08:39 PM   #15
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Re: All my tracks are in A minor.

On the bright side you will have a really easy time sampling stuff from yourself and mix and match stuff very easily.

(btw I make most stuff in Amin aswell, its just a hassle learning other scales, sticking to white keys is so easy)
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Old 27-02-2013, 09:37 PM   #16
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Re: All my tracks are in A minor.

Move the chords and melody up and down the daw's piano roll to check the difference, Easy like that. You can also check different modes just by moving/altering chords. Key in the same mode is just a tonal difference like playing different notes, but modes make huge difference.

Listen how this song totally changed once the scale mode was changed :


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Old 03-03-2013, 03:27 AM   #17
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Re: All my tracks are in A minor.

Not much of a difference. I suspect that when you listen to a piece in one key and then in another, the main reason they sound 'different' in terms of tone quality is that you're subconsciously thinking about the second melody in terms of the first. The 'tone quality difference' is exactly the same sort of brain-trick that causes a C played immediately after an E to sound major and a C played immediately after an Eb to sound minor.

Now of course the key you compose in is fairly important; most analog instruments refuse to play higher or lower than a certain pitch, while most digital instruments sound crap when played outside their register. I'd suggest composing the tune in A minor or C major, then transposing it to whichever register fits the instruments best.
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Old 03-03-2013, 04:14 AM   #18
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Re: All my tracks are in A minor.

Quote:
Originally Posted by XMtS View Post
It's actually more like a writer always writing in the same tense. Not that there's anything wrong with that.
I think it's more like a writer who gets stuck up on character types or themes. Which is every writer. Just like most musicians get caught up in certain creative choices.

Just try different keys, man. Not saying the OP, but some people get so afraid they are doing something wrong if the don't follow their carefully crafted paint by numbers routine to create a track. I fight against this constantly. Just try different stuff, always be learning and when you learn something play around with it and try breaking the rules you just learned about...and when you get too used to breaking the rules, start following them again.

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Old 04-03-2013, 12:38 AM   #19
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Re: All my tracks are in A minor.

Highlight all your notes, now drag them one whole tone up. NOW ALL YOUR TRACK IS IN B MINOR!

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Old 13-03-2013, 01:42 AM   #20
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Re: All my tracks are in A minor.

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Originally Posted by Dippshoe View Post
Highlight all your notes, now drag them one whole tone up. NOW ALL YOUR TRACK IS IN B MINOR!
Most of my tracks are made like that. I just change the note and then close the project for a few hours, then come back and listen to it to see if it feels "weird" if not I keep it that way.

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