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Subject: The Key of House


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Original Message 1/28                 Date: 20-Nov-02  @  10:45 AM   -   The Key of House

Steve Webster

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Disclaimer: Please don’t laugh at me for this.
I know you lot talk about using your ears but I have zero musical skills. Well, that’s not strictly true. It’s just that my theory doesn’t stretch to the “circle of fifths” and my chord progressions are quite basic. Anyway, I have reached the conclusion that both Cm and Am are my favourite keys (both the blues scales though). I find Cm to be quite “techno” sounding (kinda old school) and Am to sound quite “magical” sounding. Would you agree or have I totally imagined it? Basically I wanted to know if you guys think that a lot of (proper) house seems to be in both these keys.

Ps- no sniggering at the back there :-)



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Message 2/28                 Date: 20-Nov-02  @  11:00 AM   -   RE: The Key of House

bedwyr

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well, there's plenty of ideas about different keys having different "emotions" so rest assured, you're not barmy. those classical bods were well into it. can't give you any examples though. anyone?

house key? ... yale! oh, ha haha, ho ho, he, hmm ... i'll get me coat.



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Message 3/28                 Date: 20-Nov-02  @  11:34 AM   -   RE: The Key of House

xoxos

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hmm.. i tend to nurture my uuh 'uninformed biases' as long as they contribute to my creative or other projects.. is that a useful 'truth' or not??



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Message 4/28                 Date: 20-Nov-02  @  11:48 AM   -   RE: The Key of House

Steve Webster

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I am not asking the key of life. Please produce me.



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Message 5/28                 Date: 20-Nov-02  @  07:59 PM   -   RE: The Key of House

xoxos

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i'll keep my mouth shut next time then, won't i. sure, but if you don't bring a 20 you have to rub my feet.



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Message 6/28                 Date: 26-Nov-02  @  04:40 PM   -   RE: The Key of House

Gideon

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The old classical composers did tend to associate different moods to different keys (and by extension also to the chords in different keys, even if dealing with the "fundamental" or "fifth" chords, etc.).
HOWEVER, this practice is meaningful only when using "pure" scales: scales which have supposedly "perfect" golden-rule relationships between the frequencies of the fifth note, the fourth note, and the fundamantal note of the scale. If you use such a perfect scale to tune your piano for C scale, then all other scales will sound "slightly strange" in various ways (depending on the scale). Playing your melody in the other scales will not sound exactly as if you transposed it on the scales we use today.

So what do we use today ?!
We use a sort of "averaged" mapping of notes to frequencies, where the logarithmic difference between all semi-tones is allways 1/12, regardless of which scale you're actually dealing with. Obviously, the same melody transposed, and same chords (primary, fifth, etc.), will just sound "the same", just at slightly higher frequencies, without those "slightly strange" effects.



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Message 7/28                 Date: 26-Nov-02  @  10:07 PM   -   RE: The Key of House

k

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isn't 'smells like teen spirit' by nirvana riff a circle of 5ths?

___________________________________

I had an idea for a script once. It's basically Jaws except when the guys in the boat are going after Jaws, they look around and there's an even bigger Jaws. The guys have to team up with Jaws to get Bigger Jaws.... I call it... Big Jaws!!!



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Message 8/28                 Date: 27-Nov-02  @  08:47 AM   -   RE: The Key of House

Steve Webster

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I like A minor. I'll stick to it.



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Message 9/28                 Date: 27-Nov-02  @  12:55 PM   -   RE: The Key of House

IntoxicatingSounds

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Yes Gideon is correct, in theory there is no difference in "sound" between different keys, just a difference in pitch. Two things to consider... Getting the bass line in the right pitch range. Too low and it will sound woolly and lack punch, too high and it won't have the necessary power. This can be surprisingly critical and even a difference of a couple of semitones can make a big difference to the feel of a track. This could explain the subjective difference between Am and Cm. The second thing is if you are hoping djs will play your tracks choose a key that will fit with other tracks in the same genre. Even the most tone-deaf dj will notice that mixing two tracks that are a semitone apart doesn't sound quite right. For this reason Cm (relative minor of E flat) might not be a good choice. C sharp minor may be better. You can't go wrong with Am though.



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Message 10/28                 Date: 27-Nov-02  @  01:51 PM   -   RE: The Key of House

bill e

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i'm no theorist or dj, but once your track gets pitched up/down by the dj, then isn't this gonna change the key a bit anyway? Or is the + or - 8 not large enough to make a nasty change to the pitch?



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