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SostenutO
04-30-2005, 11:41 PM
I heard about something called reharmonizing. Call it what you want, but it is basically taking chord progressions and adding "stuff to it". For example you don't just play the chords they tell you to because that gets boring. I read some things online about techniques such as "walk-ups/downs" or these stops that add a very nice effect to blues/gospel etc. Can anyone explain to me some useful techniques for playing chords. Maybe something that gives the chords a more gospel feel. Thanks.

Los Boleros
05-01-2005, 01:07 AM
I heard about something called reharmonizing. Call it what you want, but it is basically taking chord progressions and adding "stuff to it". For example you don't just play the chords they tell you to because that gets boring. I read some things online about techniques such as "walk-ups/downs" or these stops that add a very nice effect to blues/gospel etc. Can anyone explain to me some useful techniques for playing chords. Maybe something that gives the chords a more gospel feel. Thanks. If you are playing by yourself, then you will be respnsible for producing the melody as well as the chords. The inversion of the chord that you select should have the melody line as the highest note.
Example:
If I was to play "Happy birthday to you" in the key of A, then I would use as the first A chord, A,C#,E because E is the note that your ear will hear.

Now If I was gonna play, Happy Birthday to You" but I was only providing the chords for someone else to sing, Then I would chose:
E,A,C#

That way the C# from my chord is in harmony with the E note of the melody.

SostenutO
05-01-2005, 01:41 AM
Thx, but I meant more along the lines of making chord progressions sound better. I heard the term used as Reharmonizing. I want to know techniques used when playing chord progressions such as runs, walk-ups, etc. I don't really know much about these techniques...

SeattleRuss
05-01-2005, 02:17 AM
Long, long ago.....before reharmonization.......there was......

harmonization! :D

Seriously though, reharmonization refers to taking a melody or whole song, complete with melody and harmony (already has chord changes) and while keeping the melody line the same, changing the underlying harmony. There are numerous approaches to this and really, it's up to your ear (or somebody else's) wants to hear.

It's actually quite fun to try with simple well-known melodies. a lot of the time (not always), you will notice that the melody note will be the top note of the chord. Try changing the notes underneath and see what you get.

It's sounds to me though, that you might benefit from learning to harmonize melodic lines first. Actually, reharmonization excercises are a great way to learn to harmonize lines too!

Maybe some forumite can suggest a good book?

sixstrings121
05-01-2005, 03:17 AM
Is this the same thing as 'Tonal Coloring'?

SeattleRuss
05-01-2005, 03:23 AM
Is this the same thing as 'Tonal Coloring'?

I'm not familiar with that terminology. I don't know if it's made it's way into the lexicon yet....I am familiar with Crayola Coloring.... :D

http://www.meiselgallery.com/audreyf/public_html/paint/crayola.jpg

Malcolm
05-01-2005, 04:03 AM
Click here (http://www.guitarlodge.com/forums/guitar-bass/showthread.php?t=18771&highlight=Chord+emblishment)

The string talks about chord embellishment. That and back cycling may be what you have reference to.

Poparad
05-01-2005, 06:00 AM
Reharmonization is just changing the chords to an existing melody to suit your whim. You can add more chords, take out chords, or keep the same number of chords and replace them with different ones. The basic pricinples are the same as when you write any other kind of harmony.


Here's a reharm I did on Silent Night a year ago:

http://gozips.uakron.edu/~jjp14/silentnight.pdf
http://gozips.uakron.edu/~jjp14/silentnight.mp3

gersdal
05-01-2005, 09:17 AM
Nice arrangement of Silent Night, Poparad. I did an arrangement of the same song around Christmas some years ago. It would be great to have your comments to my effort.

Silent Night's chord progression goes something like:
|G|G|G|G|D|D|G|G|C|C|G|G|C|C|G|G|D|D|G|G|G|D|G|

My reharmonisation is something like:
|G7|G7|G7|G7|D9|Eb+9|Em7|G7|C7|C7|G7|G7|C7|C7|G7|G 7|D9|D#dim|G7|Em7|G-Gdim-Ddim|D-D7-D#dim|G7|

The reharmosation is purely by ear and fitting the chords to the melody. However, hopefully there are some elements of correct theory in it as well. The arrangement with melody is in the ptb file.

EDIT:
Off course I would like comments from anyone, not just Poparad's as the original message may indicate.

sixstrings121
05-01-2005, 09:28 AM
I think tonal coloring is when you take a melody, and add any chords over it as long as you think it sounds good (they can be out of key and such) is that the same as reharmonization?

Doug McMullen
05-01-2005, 01:56 PM
There's a book called "Reharmonization" put out by Berklee Press, it's by Randy Felts. It is an _excellent_ book. I reccommend it. You will learn a lot about how chords flow from it.

There's also big section of "the jazz theory book" by Mark Levine devoted to reharmonization. I like the Jazz Theory Book and the sheer size of it and the number of musical examples make it fun for dipping into... but for reharmonization I much prefer the Berklee book.

Doug.

gersdal
05-03-2005, 08:48 AM
I thought that this tread was in the Composition, Arranging & Analysis, and checked as there was no reply and comments to Poparad's and my reharmonisation and arrangement. A little suprised to find it in the Piano & Keys Forum. Possibly my mistake, but looking at the tread - maybe a move to the Composition, Arranging & Analysis forum would fit the topic better. Both Poparads great reharmonisation and arrangement and my rather uneducated attempt is for guitar rather than for piano. Anyway, I would very much like some feedback, whatever and wherever. Maybe it's the wrong season for this arrangement ;)

SostenutO
05-03-2005, 06:47 PM
No, it doesn't because it regards Piano. Also, I used the wrong terminology. I wanted to know some techniques for playing chords. Like instead of playing F-Bb-C you would add little things to make it sound better. For example in gospel.

gersdal
05-03-2005, 07:12 PM
Point taken. However, it applies to guitar and other instruments as well as piano, and that's the reason for my proposal for moving it to the more general and not instrument specific Composition, Arranging & Analysis, but in the end it's your thread, so ... :)
As the action in this thread is rather slow, I ordered "Reharmonization" by Randy Felts today. Hope your right Doug.

SostenutO
05-03-2005, 09:53 PM
That is true, but I was shooting for more of a piano technique tips, etc etc, for playing chords [progressions].

Doug McMullen
05-04-2005, 02:34 AM
Wow, I never pay attention to the forum heading (I just check in to post via the "recent replies" list).

If I understand correctly, you aren't looking for reharmonization advice specfically but rather for tips on the stuff that lets a keyboard player take a lead sheet that has a few chord symbols above a stave of melody and turn it into full blown accompaniement with more going on than just the left hand blocking out chord after chord.
So, there's a continuum that runs: basic block chording/embellished chords and chord vamps/fully textured accompaniment. You're looking for tips that will help you advance your abilities along that continuum (particularly in the gospel style).

Jeez, I wish I could help! What you need is a keyboard player with a solid gospel background (but you knew that).

OK, A) I'm not a pianist, and B) I'm not knowledgeable about gospel -- okay allowing for that....

First --,some of the info you are looking for does fall under the category of reharmonization, and I do think you'll find material of interest to you in the Felts book (although it is of course very difficult to gauge the appropriate level of things for someone just from a few words online.)

Secondly,

A book I mentioned in my orginal post, The Jazz Theory Book, is by Mark Levine, and he's a well-respected pianist. His original claim to fame was writing a book called "The Jazz Piano Book."

Now, I realize the interest here is in gospel, and surely there are more direct paths to learning how gospel keyboard players dress up an F chord than to delve into Levine's (very big) Jazz Piano book, buuut, he's a very good author and I'll bet much of the information you are looking for is in that book, and along with it will come a whole truckload more. And, a nice thing about Levine is that he fills his books with tons of written musical examples drawn from actual recorded music (not stuff made up for instructional purpose). So, that's my tip for a good book for an advancing keyboard player to keep in mind. The Jazz Piano book by Mark Levine.

An obviously good thing to do of course would be to get some lead sheets for some gospel tunes, and then get some recordings of those tunes in settings that feature a prominent piano or organ part, and listen carefully to how the keyboard accompaniest does his/her thing. Pay particular attention to how the accompaniest handles sections where the melody is heard against a single chord for two or more bars. Notice how the accompaniest handles endings and turnarounds.

Good luck,

Doug.

TheMusic
05-05-2005, 06:13 AM
both topics are good. reharmonization and the best way to do accompaniment gospel music with piano. how about gospel music accompaniment for guitar? any advice?

SostenutO
05-05-2005, 06:53 PM
shouldn't that question be in the guitar sections?