The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #167254   Message #4032141
Posted By: Stanron
04-Feb-20 - 07:23 AM
Thread Name: How Come You Do Me Like You Do?
Subject: RE: How Come You Do Me Like You Do?
Hi Jerry. This is a question I ask myself. In European theory there was a German school and a Vienna school. They didn't agree on too much and then jazz happened.

The word '5th' here can have two distinct meanings. It can be the name of a chord in relation to the root. It is the number equivalent to the name 'Dominant'. So G is the 5th in the Key of C and it is also the Dominant chord in that key.

Alternatively a 5th can be, quite simply, an interval. Count upwards between any two notes inclusively and you get the interval. C D E F G, five notes is a 5th.

For those who are not familiar with the term, the diagram for the Cycle of fifths is widely available on line. Type circle or cycle of fifths into a search engine and look at the images.

You will see C at the top center. Going clockwise from there you get all the 5th intervals until you come back to C.

You'll notice that the sequence of chords mentioned in this thread is only found if you go anti clockwise around the circle. However if you go anti-clockwise around the diagram the intervals are inverted 5ths, or 4ths.

Modern theory appears to view chord sequences in terms of function. In this sequence the chords go through a recurring loop of being secondary dominant, dominant, tonic and then modulating. This loop continues until it reaches C which is the actual root and then it can stop. It's reached an audibly obvious end.

E7 A7 D7 G7 C

Functionally each chord is the 5th chord in the key of the chord that follows. It is also the secondary dominant to the chord that follows up to and including D7.

Whilst this is true isn't it all just a little bit too complicated?

Surely a musician playing along with this is not thinking "oh I've changed key!", "oh I've changed key!", "oh I've changed key!" at each chord change.

They will spot the pattern of repeated intervals and get to be able to predict what comes next and know when they get to root.

If you analyse chord sequences as a series of intervals you get to recognise patterns that functional analysis may not reveal.