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Thread: ii triad

  1. #1
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    ii triad

    In a book called "Harmony: a course of study" by G.W. Chadwick, it is said about the ii chord:

    "The most important of these triads is founded upon the supertonic of the scale, and, being the parallel minor of the subdominant, itís third is often doubled, especially after a tonic chord."

    Let's see if I'm thinking correctly (using the Cmaj scale):

    ii - D F A

    is founded upon the supertonic of the scale: Yes, it is. D is the supertonic of the Cmaj scale.

    being the parallel minor of the subdominant: Subdominant is F => F G A Bb C D E F and its parallel minor is D E F G A Bb C D.

    I think this sentence is somewhat misleading, or my english is not good enough. Is it saying that the third of the supertonic triad is the tonic of the parallel minor of the subdominant (which is not correct because it should be the D and not the F) or it should be understood as "considering the parallel minor of the subdominant"?

    Thanks

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    EDIT: Didn't catch the parallel/relative error Jon points out below
    Last edited by walternewton; 11-14-2014 at 08:06 PM.

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    The sentence - as I understand it - is not just misleading, it's wrong. As you rightly say, the ii chord is the relative minor of the subdominant (although that's still possibly a misuse of the terms "relative/parallel", which AFAIK should apply to keys or scales, not to chords).

    If they're referring to the 3rd of the ii chord, that is of course the root of the subdominant, but you wouldn't call a single note a "parallel minor".

    Chadwick may have just made a silly slip in his original manuscript (and would know it was wrong if he/she spotted it), but it seems the proof reader wasn't doing their job either....
    Last edited by JonR; 11-14-2014 at 08:07 PM.

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    I think the overall point is that (sticking with C) the third of Dm (the F) is often doubled after a tonic chord, no?

    If so, is it because of the fact that D minor is the relative minor of F major (which, to me, is what he seems to be saying?)

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    In fact I made a mistake... F G A Bb C D E F and its parallel minor is D E F G A Bb C D...this is wrong because it's the relative minor.
    If we try to use the parallel minor F G Ab Bb C Db Eb F, the rult would be F Ab C which is different from D F A
    But like Jon said, maybe the author misused the term parallel.

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    I think the overall point is that (sticking with C) the third of Dm (the F) is often doubled after a tonic chord, no?

    If so, is it because of the fact that D minor is the relative minor of F major (which, to me, is what he seems to be saying?)
    Yes, I think so. But aim is to understand why is the third to be doubled? Is it because is the tonic of the relative major?

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    Quote Originally Posted by rbarata View Post
    Yes, I think so. But aim is to understand why is the third to be doubled?
    That, I do not know - it seems like something he should have covered earlier in the book?

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    In a major key, the third of the secondary chords (ii, vi, and vii) is often doubled, actually preferentially to doubling the fifth. The third of these chords is one of the notes of the tonic. Of course should one of these chords have a sharpened third, (II, VI, VI), that note should not be doubled as it tends to act like a temporary (one or two notes long) leading tone. This makes for smoother voice leading.

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