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Hey there,

I’m currently trying to improve my theoretical jazz knowledge since I’m planning to study Jazz saxophone.

One of the most important things for the theoretical part is to be able to analyze chord changes (functional analysis) like the one in the attachment. I am pretty much a total beginner in doing that, so it would be very helpful if somebody can analyze these chords and explain how you did that.

In the other attachment (the first one at the top) I need to add chords to the changes that make sense in this harmonic context

Thanks for your help!

View attachment 230598

View attachment 230600
 

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One of the most important things for the theoretical part is to be able to analyze chord changes (functional analysis) like the one in the attachment. I am pretty much a total beginner in doing that, so it would be very helpful if somebody can analyze these chords and explain how you did that.
Given you are a total beginner in this topic, I'd start with something a bit more basic than the changes you listed. Just a thought... No doubt some on here can analyze that progression for you, but it won't likely help much if you don't have the basics of functional harmony down.
 

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IMaj7 | V7/vi| related ii-7 V7/V | bvi-9 | IMaj7 vi-7 | ii-7 V7 | v-7 | IVMaj7 | ii-7 | IMaj7 ||

IMaj7 |#idim | ii-7 | #iidim | iii-7 | IVMaj7 | #ivdim | I/5 | V7/ii | ii-11 | IVMaj7/9 |I7 ||

It's all basic harmony. Most of it is diatonic, the bvi-9 and v-7 are modal interchange, and the V7/V and V7/ii are secondary dominants. All the diminished chords are passing diminished. Neither example works too well harmonically. The first one starts with strong tonal harmony but then goes into a modal resolution which is a much weaker sound and leaves it sounding like it peters out. The second one is going on in classic fashion until the cadence at the end, which, after all the sounds of dominant resolution implied by the passing diminished chords and the secondary dominant A7, gets stuck in subdominant land for an extra bar before going to I. Similar to the first example, it's just an unexpectedly weak sounding ending.

Anyway, I think a course in jazz theory or a book or something would be more helpful than an example on a forum. Barrie Nettles "Chord Scale Theory and Harmony" is pretty exhaustive, but honestly I'd try to take a course somewhere because learning this stuff is better in small doses with time to practice each concept.
 

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In the first one:

bar 1: it's in C major.
Bar 2: E7+9 is the V of A-, the following change; this cadences to that chord/sound.
Bar 3: it's a ii-V combination
Bar 4: especially if you add a Db7 on beat 3, it's a downstep ii-V combination that cadences back to C.
Bars 5 and 6: I-vi-ii-V in C.
bar 7: if you again add the V of the ii-V combination, G-7 to C7, you cadence to the next bar.
Bar 8: F, led to by the cadence in the previous bar.
bars 9-11: if you add the V chords to the ii-V combinations, iii-VI-ii-V in C.

Not sure what you're after in the 2nd example. It goes upstep, up up up, then cadences on III-VI-ii-V to C --- the F/G makes a G7sus4 sound, plus a 13th.
 

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IMaj7 | V7/vi| related ii-7 V7/V | bvi-9 | IMaj7 vi-7 | ii-7 V7 | v-7 | IVMaj7 | ii-7 | IMaj7 ||

IMaj7 |#idim | ii-7 | #iidim | iii-7 | IVMaj7 | #ivdim | I/5 | V7/ii | ii-11 | IVMaj7/9 |I7 ||

It's all basic harmony. Most of it is diatonic, the bvi-9 and v-7 are modal interchange, and the V7/V and V7/ii are secondary dominants. All the diminished chords are passing diminished. Neither example works too well harmonically.

Anyway, I think a course in jazz theory or a book or something would be more helpful than an example on a forum.
Yeah, Dan, it may be basic harmony, but do you think someone who is "pretty much a total beginner" (who may or may not know how to spell a major7 chord, let alone know what a secondary dominant or #ivdim chord is) would understand what you or bokagee wrote? Still, good analysis since that's what the OP asked for.

Your recommendation for a course or book on music theory is right on the money.
 

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IMaj7 | V7/vi| related ii-7 V7/V | bvi-9 | IMaj7 vi-7 | ii-7 V7 | v-7 | IVMaj7 | ii-7 | IMaj7 ||

IMaj7 |#idim | ii-7 | #iidim | iii-7 | IVMaj7 | #ivdim | I/5 | V7/ii | ii-11 | IVMaj7/9 |I7 ||

It's all basic harmony. Most of it is diatonic, the bvi-9 and v-7 are modal interchange, and the V7/V and V7/ii are secondary dominants. All the diminished chords are passing diminished. Neither example works too well harmonically.

Anyway, I think a course in jazz theory or a book or something would be more helpful than an example on a forum.
Yeah, Dan, it may be basic harmony, but do you think someone who is "pretty much a total beginner" (who may or may not know how to spell a major7 chord, let alone know what a secondary dominant or #ivdim chord is) would understand what you or bokagee wrote? Still, good analysis since that's what the OP asked for.

Your recommendation for a course or book on music theory is right on the money.
I agree. You might as well have written it out in Ancient Greek as far as I can understand it. Modal interchange? Huh. I guess that’s the difference between a self taught player and someone who studied music in college .
 

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Yeah, Dan, it may be basic harmony, but do you think someone who is "pretty much a total beginner" (who may or may not know how to spell a major7 chord, let alone know what a secondary dominant or #ivdim chord is) would understand what you or bokagee wrote? Still, good analysis since that's what the OP asked for.

Your recommendation for a course or book on music theory is right on the money.
No, I don't think they would, but I thought it would be rude not to answer the question they did ask before giving unsolicited advice they didn't ask for. I figure, in providing the analysis as well as my opinion of how to go about learning to understand it, I'm not only presenting the OP with a problem but a possible solution.
 

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I agree. You might as well have written it out in Ancient Greek as far as I can understand it. Modal interchange? Huh. I guess that’s the difference between a self taught player and someone who studied music in college .
Hell, I DID study music in college and I only barely held in there (it also helps that a) that was 18 years ago and I only just picked up my horn again last year after that long of a layoff and b) I missed the first attachment somehow, and only saw the second one for both).
 

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If I hadn't been taught this kind of stuff in a classroom, reinforced by private lessons, including taking piano and jazz piano classes and having started out as a guitar player, I would never have gotten it. Add to that the requirements of taking traditional theory, i.e., figured bass, sonata allegro form, score analysis, etc, ear training, orchestration, they all gave me the tools I needed and have used ever since. I owe my teachers a debt that I could never repay. So yeah, find some classes and lessons, it's the best way to get there. My high school band director tried to get us started with theory, but I think his own background in it was a little sketchy, or our being 16-17 somehow made us incapable of getting it. Soon as I was a freshman in music school, whoosh, buried in it.
 

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No, I don't think they would, but I thought it would be rude not to answer the question they did ask before giving unsolicited advice they didn't ask for. I figure, in providing the analysis as well as my opinion of how to go about learning to understand it, I'm not only presenting the OP with a problem but a possible solution.
No worries, Dan. I'm glad you posted the analysis, I agree it's what the OP asked for, and as I pointed out I was certain such an analysis would be forthcoming. But I wanted to respond to the fact that the OP stated he (she?) is a total beginner. I would hope my advice to start with something a bit more basic than that progression would be a good idea. Not sure if that was 'unsolicited' or not, but I think it's sound advice.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks for your analysis, Dan and bookage!

those are examples from the conservatory where I want to apply for studying Jazz Saxophone.

I had a look at Barrie Nettles "Chord Scale Theory and Harmony", looks good, I think that's exactly what I need to learn analysis from the scratch
 

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the bvi-9 and v-7 are modal interchange,.
I don't understand how Abm9 in C can be modal interchange. I don't know of a C mode that can have a Cb

Surely this is a suspension (ie IIm7) on to a Db7 which is triton substitute in C, (a substitute for G7) Hence it is an alteration not a modal interchange.
 

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I don't understand how Abm9 in C can be modal interchange. I don't know of a C mode that can have a Cb

Surely this is a suspension (ie IIm7) on to a Db7 which is triton substitute in C, (a substitute for G7) Hence it is an alteration not a modal interchange.
I thought of it as a bastardization of the harmonic minor, poaching the Cb from the B natural, with the Gb just kinda thrown in there, but I think your analysis is correct. Didn't spend to much time thinking about it lol.
 

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All the diminished chords are passing diminished. Neither example works too well harmonically.
I think of those diminished chords as substitutes for secondary dominants - eg C#dim to Dm is basically A7 to Dmin, so it's a (version of) V/ii to ii. Same with the next 2 examples. Whether the whole phrase works for you is subjective, but those are pretty strong functions IMO.

To the OP - there's a lot of learning to do between just starting and completing the task you ask of us, as you can no doubt already tell. Good luck =)
 

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I think of those diminished chords as substitutes for secondary dominants - eg C#dim to Dm is basically A7 to Dmin, so it's a (version of) V/ii to ii. Same with the next 2 examples. Whether the whole phrase works for you is subjective, but those are pretty strong functions IMO.

To the OP - there's a lot of learning to do between just starting and completing the task you ask of us, as you can no doubt already tell. Good luck =)
Correct regarding the first two as secondary dominants. C#dim is a passing diminished that can be viewed as replacing the function of secondary dominant A7b9 (to Dm7). Likewise D#dim as replacing B7 b9 (to Em7)

However the third one (F#dim to C) is not a replacement for a V7. The F# and D# can be viewed as "neighbour notes"
 
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