Pop Music Theory
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|19-29 (Chord Progressions)
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|Song Examples: Rolling Stone
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Lesson 35: Melody: Chord Tones
This lesson introduces
the art of creating melodies
Before taking this lesson, you should know:
To learn about creating your own melodies
, we start by studying
in existing songs; this is called melodic analysis
Melodic analysis is a big subject, exploring the many different aspects of
melodies, for example (these are covered in separate lessons):
For this lesson, let's start analyzing how individual notes
in a melody
work with the song's chords
and with other notes in the melody. We can
divide a melody's notes into:
"Anchor notes" (chord tones): More about these below.
Embellishing notes: These are relatively "weak" notes which "fill
in" between the anchor notes. We'll explore these in
Lesson 48: Embellishing Tones.
These are the "strong" notes in a melody which sound good
"on their own" with the chord that's playing at that moment, generally because
they are chord tones
. A chord tone
is just a tone which can be
found in the chord itself. For example:
Let's say the chord playing at a certain moment is C (a "C major
The notes in a C chord are (as I hope you know): C, E, and G.
Therefore, the notes C, E, and G are chord tones at that moment in
the song; and you can use any of those notes in your melody at that moment,
with confidence that the note will sound good with the chord.
© 2019 Conrad Albrecht. All rights reserved.