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Thread: common key changes, bridge changes, chorus changes

  1. #1
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    common key changes, bridge changes, chorus changes

    I was just wondering what some of the more common bridge changes would be like and chorus changes and key changes.

    i noticed its fairly frequent that people will switch the key just a semi-tone up and repeat what they were just playing, but i was wondering what else is common as for key changes when going to either the bridge or chorus.

    also i've notice some chords are good as kind of segways and stuff like that, chords in a key seem to have a role they fit in nicely, so i was wondering which chords (as in I, ii, IV or whatever) commonly play the role of being either the first chord of a bridge or chorus and i guess which chords tend to segway into those, while staying in the same key, or maybe while changing keys as well, as now that i think of it that's probably important as well.


    i know that at the end of the day you can do whatever you want and really it's whatever suits your fancy, whatever you think makes a good segway or whatever, but i was just wondering what the more common choices were.

  2. #2
    JazzNerd gersdal's Avatar
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    Key changes are often along the circle of 5ths. You would then typically use the ii, turn into a II7, as the translation key.

    I think I've seen some more stuff and analysis of these things in the "Guitar Handbook".
    http://www.amazon.co.uk/New-Guitar-H...9080847&sr=8-1

  3. #3
    Registered User Malcolm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fingerpikingood
    ......i noticed its fairly frequent that people will switch the key just a semi-tone up and repeat what they were just playing, but i was wondering what else is common as for key changes when going to either the bridge or chorus.
    Yes, taking the riff into another octave or moving the "pattern" of the riff a simi-tone like you say is effective.
    ....also i've notice some chords are good as kind of segways and stuff like that, chords in a key seem to have a role they fit in nicely, so i was wondering which chords (as in I, ii, IV or whatever) commonly play the role of being either the first chord of a bridge or chorus and i guess which chords tend to segway into those, while staying in the same key, or maybe while changing keys as well, as now that i think of it that's probably important as well.
    Well - it's a balancing act between 1) chord structure, the journey the chords take between rest, tension, climax then resolution and return to rest in each verse, chorus, etc. and 2) if we assume each verse starts at rest then the I chord is obviously the best choice, however other factors come into play and the balancing act begins.

    Which chords can start a verse, chorus? I can not remember studying anything on this subject - I'm winging it here. The I chord is obvious if we consider the verse starts at rest. I've seen the V chord used to start a verse, however, I really can not give a reason why, other than it sounded right at the moment. If you were switching between major to minor - going from a major verse to a minor chorus then the chorus could start with the relative minor vi chord. Along those same lines the ii chord can function as a starting chord - as it's the minor "super tonic" chord and we see it used in the jazz chord progression ii-V-I all the time.

    Only chords left, besides the viidim and I discount that chord as I never play a diminished scale or chord progression, I do use it as the beginnings of a turn-a-round, however back to the point, the only chords left are the iii and the IV. The iii or III set the major or minor tone, however, I can not recall ever seeing it used as a starting chord. The IV is a sub-dominant chord like the ii so I guess it could function as a first chord, I just do not recall seeing it as a starting chord.

    Now as to key changes between verse, chorus, bridges, etc. I very seldom run into anything more than major to minor. Most of what I play picks a key and sticks with it through out the entire song.

    While we are here what note makes a good starting note? That depends on the chord that is used as the starting chord. If it was C then one of C's chord tones C, E or G would probably be the first note in the verse. Which one? The one that sounds the best with the first lyric word. Try it -- let's say the first word is Now. Recite Now and sound each note C-E-G. C sounded the best to me .......

    Other will have more to say.
    Last edited by Malcolm; 08-01-2009 at 03:14 PM.

  4. #4
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    This book is filled with examples of typical chord progressions for verses, bridges, choruses, key changes etc.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by walternewton
    This book is filled with examples of typical chord progressions for verses, bridges, choruses, key changes etc.
    thanks man, i'll check it out

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