Ask Shakey Mo Collier

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from the Beach Boys Poll thread:

Geir doesn't understand music theory, or what chords are. He claimed on some other thread (I can't find it at the moment) that a chord with more 5ths or 9ths or whatever was more complex than a major chord. But this is simply wrong - an E major chord can be played on the guitar with 6 notes in it (E, B, E, G#, B and E). By contrast you can play an E9 chord with just five notes (E, G #, B, D, F#). One is not "more complex" than the other, they're just different note combinations.

I'm afraid you're confusing "chord" with "voicing" here!

E major chord has three pitch classes, while E9 chord has five pitch classes,

so in terms of harmony E9 is always more complex than E major, because octave can only extend the voicing (and not the chord) :-)

jus 1 bliss, Saturday, 20 August 2011 15:08 (eight years ago) link

so really more "Tell Shakey Mo Collier"

sweatpants life trajectory (schlump), Saturday, 20 August 2011 15:12 (eight years ago) link

no, I was referring to the famous thread "Ask Geir Hongro" where ILM makes fun of Geir Hongro

jus 1 bliss, Saturday, 20 August 2011 15:16 (eight years ago) link

i was insufficiently schooled, carry on

sweatpants life trajectory (schlump), Saturday, 20 August 2011 15:22 (eight years ago) link

jus 1 dick

A True White Kid that can Jump (Granny Dainger), Saturday, 20 August 2011 15:49 (eight years ago) link

jus 51 sbliss

buzza, Saturday, 20 August 2011 17:51 (eight years ago) link

i can't even read music

any major based god will swag you (upper mississippi sh@kedown), Saturday, 20 August 2011 18:50 (eight years ago) link

I can't even read you

the wheelie king (wk), Saturday, 20 August 2011 18:54 (eight years ago) link

but jus 1 bliss otm

the wheelie king (wk), Saturday, 20 August 2011 18:58 (eight years ago) link

E9 is more complex because (1) it has 5 notes in it instead of 3, and (2) I find it tricky to play guitar chords that require leaving the E string unstrummed.

Lee547 (Lee626), Sunday, 21 August 2011 13:29 (eight years ago) link

I'm afraid you're confusing "chord" with "voicing" here

ya got me

so Add Some Music to You Day IS more harmonically complex than Good Vibrations after all

that mellow wash of meh (Shakey Mo Collier), Sunday, 21 August 2011 16:07 (eight years ago) link

except that nobody in the other thread used the word complex except for you. I said it was more harmonically sophisticated, referring primarily to the vocal harmonies.

the wheelie king (wk), Sunday, 21 August 2011 16:21 (eight years ago) link

I thought that just by listening to the two songs, it was pretty obvious that the chord progression of Good Vibrations was more sophisticated and yes, complex than that of Add Some Music. But in case you can't hear it I thought I would analyze the two songs.

Add Some Music To Your Day

The basic progression of Add Some Music goes I - IV - I - vii - I - vii - I - IV - V - I in the key of E Major, with the addition of some added color using the sus 4 passing chord (similar to many other songs of the era, such as We Can Work It Out). The melody is entirely in the key of E major, and this same progression is used three times twice in the verses, and repeated again for the chorus. On the main "add some music" part of the chorus, the vocals are just doing the I and IV major chords and there isn't really a melody per se.

The bridge moves to the vi chord and the melody throws in a 9th on top, but then stays within the E Major scale for the rest of the bridge. Then some chord substitutions are thrown into this section. The vi, iii and ii are shifted from minor to major a few times so that the whole bridge progression goes
vi - iii7 - VI - ii - III - VI - II - V7
and despite the minor to major substitution, there is still a fairly strong E Major feeling, especially when the F# and B7 at the end of the bridge return back to E Major for the next verse, creating a II - V7 - I progression which is a slight variation on the standard ii - V7 - I.

Good Vibrations - note, I transposed a half step down out of laziness.
Good Vibrations opens with a descending Andalusian cadence, Dm - C - Bb - A (also known as the "money chords" since they were used on a bunch of hits of the era like Walk Don't Run and Runaway) essentially in the key of A with the melody in a Phrygian mode (F Major scale over chords in the key of A).

At the end of the verse, the last A goes back to a C before shifting to F for the chorus, setting up a V-I cadence that shifts the song into F Major for the chorus. The chords do a simple I-IV progression while the melody on top is in a Mixolydian mode (Bb Major scale on top of the F Major chords). It's interesting to note that the melody was on an F Major scale during the verse while the harmony was in the key of A but now that the harmony has switched to F Major, the melody shifts again. The key change feels very natural due to the cadence and the modal shift.

The refrain is repeated three times, and each time there's a key change up a step. So it goes from F - Bb to G - C to A - D. These upward key changes are like a mirror image of the descending progression in the verse. With the last repeat of the refrain in the key of A Major, that leads the song nicely back to the verse by doing a shift from D to Dm.

After a repeat of the verse and chorus, the bridge stays in the key of A, shifting between the I and the IV, with the melody in a dorian mode (I don’t know where but she sends me there...)

Then for the second half of the bridge, the key changes again. A moves to E, creating a IV - I plagal cadence shifting the song into the key of E with the “gotta keep those love good...” melody on an E blues scale. The big E7 chord at the end of the bridge before the chorus kicks back in creates another V-I cadence, taking the song back into the key of A. But this time around the chorus descends instead of ascending, so that each repeat of the refrain changes keys down a step from A to G to F. The voices trail off and the last repeat in F is instrumental. Then it reverses again, ascending from F to G to A, and back to G during the “na na na na na” part, finally resting on G for the fadeout vamp.

Overall, it’s a masterful use of cadence and the relationships between modes to create a song that is constantly changing keys in a way that always feels natural.

the wheelie king (wk), Sunday, 21 August 2011 20:37 (eight years ago) link

I would say "Add Some Music to Your Day" modulates to C# major in the bridge.

timellison, Sunday, 21 August 2011 22:14 (eight years ago) link

Also, it's bVII in the verses (upper case because it's a major chord).

timellison, Sunday, 21 August 2011 22:16 (eight years ago) link

Don't see how there's anything Phrygian about the verse in "Good Vibrations." It's just Eb minor.

timellison, Sunday, 21 August 2011 22:24 (eight years ago) link

The "I don't know where but she sends me there" part is interesting. On the one hand, I think we recognize the Eb chord as an arrival at the home key, but it's coming off the tonicized Bb chord before it, so it's still really a IV chord (and sounds more like it when it actually goes back to the Bb chord afterward).

timellison, Sunday, 21 August 2011 22:32 (eight years ago) link

And, yeah, that last chorus/coda bit is incredible with the chords going down instead of up and then back up in the coda, back down again and ending in the middle!

timellison, Sunday, 21 August 2011 22:49 (eight years ago) link

Shakey Mo is really answering remarkably few questions in this thread.

Fig On A Plate Cart (Alex in SF), Sunday, 21 August 2011 23:31 (eight years ago) link

this thread is a satisfying punishment for that thing he said about lesbians that time.

estela, Sunday, 21 August 2011 23:44 (eight years ago) link

thanks for the corrections Tim. I knew I probably made some mistakes in there. I'll take another look.

the wheelie king (wk), Monday, 22 August 2011 00:25 (eight years ago) link

I totally suck at music theory btw

the wheelie king (wk), Monday, 22 August 2011 00:25 (eight years ago) link

I would say "Add Some Music to Your Day" modulates to C# major in the bridge.

Yeah, definitely. The C#m, G#m7 and B7 were confusing me because I couldn't figure out where exactly it was changing.

the wheelie king (wk), Monday, 22 August 2011 00:33 (eight years ago) link

I totally appreciate the effort. It's amazing how something like the chords being backwards in the last chorus of "Good Vibrations" is something you never really get until you sit and figure it out. And you pointed out why it happened (because of that V-I cadence at the beginning).

xp

timellison, Monday, 22 August 2011 00:37 (eight years ago) link

this thread is a satisfying punishment for that thing he said about lesbians that time.

thanking you!

And that bridge in "Add Some Music" is confusing! Thinking about it more, I would say it modulates briefly to C#, but is it C# major or minor? When you're on the G# dominant chord, it sounds like the next chord is going to be C# minor (because the iv chord preceding the G# had been F# minor). Instead, they go to C# major but it never really sounds like a tonic chord because that cycle of fourths starts instead.

The first time you hear the C# major, earlier in the bridge, I think you're still in the key of E and it's a V/ii chord.

timellison, Monday, 22 August 2011 00:51 (eight years ago) link

Don't see how there's anything Phrygian about the verse in "Good Vibrations." It's just Eb minor.

Yeah, it depends on how you look at it I guess. If it were in Eb minor the Bb chord at the end of the descending progression would be a Bb minor, right? It depends on whether you hear the progression as being in Eb or in Bb, with it resolving to the tonic in the fourth chord. I stole the Phrygian idea from the wiki page about that progression http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Andalusian_cadence#Modal_vs._tonal

The "I don't know where but she sends me there" part is interesting. On the one hand, I think we recognize the Eb chord as an arrival at the home key, but it's coming off the tonicized Bb chord before it, so it's still really a IV chord (and sounds more like it when it actually goes back to the Bb chord afterward).

I guess it does make more sense to read the verse as being in Eb then, with the first part of the bridge being a return to Eb but major instead of minor.

And, yeah, that last chorus/coda bit is incredible with the chords going down instead of up and then back up in the coda, back down again and ending in the middle!

Yeah, I didn't do this to be confrontational to shakey or anything. I just thought from listening to Good Vibrations that the harmonic progression sounded pretty sophisticated, but I couldn't actually express why. I've been trying to learn more about theory lately and analyzing a lot of songs that I like, so I thought I would take a shot at these just to learn something, and discovering the descending then ascending stuff going on in Good Vibrations was really fun. I never really noticed that before.

xps

the wheelie king (wk), Monday, 22 August 2011 00:56 (eight years ago) link

If it were in Eb minor the Bb chord at the end of the descending progression would be a Bb minor, right?

No, it's absolutely common practice for the five chord to be major in a minor key - that's, of course, the dominant chord and functions in the "perfect authentic cadence" (the third of the chord being the leading tone that resolves to the tonic note).

I guess I have two questions about the Phrygian argument in that article. One is that I just don't hear the Bb in the verse of "Good Vibrations" as being a tonal center! And then if Bb is the center, and we're calling it Bb Phrygian, why is that Bb chord major?

The only reason it's major is because it's a dominant chord, right?

timellison, Monday, 22 August 2011 01:23 (eight years ago) link

add some lesbians to your day

buzza, Monday, 22 August 2011 03:03 (eight years ago) link

hahaha

iatee, Monday, 22 August 2011 03:04 (eight years ago) link

awesome thread btw

Dear Shakey,
Can you please tell how much time we have left to submit ballots in the jazz albums poll?

Regards,
J Redd et al

Viriconium Island Baby (James Redd and the Blecchs), Tuesday, 23 August 2011 16:45 (eight years ago) link

I'm a pedant, not a watchmaker

Try mapping out the chords to "This Whole World" or "Girls on the Beach"! Or (even though it's not much of a song), the last 30 seconds of "Pom Pom Play Girl"....

Chord changes galore, several entire key changes, very complex.

Lee547 (Lee626), Tuesday, 23 August 2011 17:14 (eight years ago) link

lol @ james redd. I think shakey finally worked it out in the end. (bet he still misses the deadline)

Armand Schaubroeck Ratfucker, Tuesday, 23 August 2011 17:16 (eight years ago) link

"Pom Pom Play Girl"....

"oooh! shake it!"

one year passes...

shakey vote in that 70s poll. Its full of nominations of stuff you like! pfunk etc

Vote in the ILM 70s poll please! (Algerian Goalkeeper), Monday, 25 February 2013 01:21 (seven years ago) link

A Dead Singer

A novella by Michael Moorcock featuring Jimi Hendrix and Shakey Mo Collier.

A veteran rock band roadie, Mo, with an addictive and dependent personality sees the (possibly) resurrected Jimi standing on an Imperial Airways flying boat taxiing toward a landing at Derwentwater. Thereafter, Mo keeps Jimi — the object of his hero worship — in isolation, traveling across the English and Scottish countryside in a black Mercedes camper. Jimi solely communicates with Mo and instructs the driver to keep secret his whereabouts.

The story begins as Mo’s addiction to speed is relapsing; as the story progresses, his drug consumption and paranoid psychosis increase until he returns to Ladbroke Grove to meet up with a drug dealer named Dave and score a large quantity of uppers, the consumption of which contributes to his death by overdose in a basement crash pad in Oxford Gardens.

The morning after Mo’s death, a girl from the Oxford Gardens pad, who admits to herself that she may be hallucinating, sees a black man who strongly resembles Jimi Hendrix enter the apartment, confirm Mo’s death, then drive away from the scene in the Mercedes camper.

Vote in the ILM 70s poll please! (Algerian Goalkeeper), Monday, 25 February 2013 01:23 (seven years ago) link

I knew about the character, but it was this that prompted my reaction:


The Great Rock 'n' Roll Swindle Gold Diggers of 1977

Steve Jones Shakey Mo Collier

Stranded In the Jungle Groove (James Redd and the Blecchs), Monday, 25 February 2013 01:25 (seven years ago) link

Hawkwind. Mo makes approving comments about the then-new HW cassette, and “Hawkwind is Ace” graffiti appears on a men’s room wall.

The Rolling Stones, Mick Jagger, Jim Morrison and Alice Cooper. As a set, regarded as “evil trippers” and “wankers” by Mo

haha

Vote in the ILM 70s poll please! (Algerian Goalkeeper), Monday, 25 February 2013 01:26 (seven years ago) link

i love the idea of our shakey mo being a gold digger

Vote in the ILM 70s poll please! (Algerian Goalkeeper), Monday, 25 February 2013 01:27 (seven years ago) link

i always thought the SMC dn was a combination Moorcock/Neil Young reference

I first read about the SMC character from reading up on the Jerry Cornelius quartet after a tossed off mention of them from k-punk

harvester of lols (Drugs A. Money), Monday, 25 February 2013 01:30 (seven years ago) link

three years pass...

https://twitter.com/sentantiq/status/799001031250165761

mookieproof, Wednesday, 16 November 2016 21:31 (three years ago) link

lol

Οὖτις, Wednesday, 16 November 2016 21:52 (three years ago) link

it's true my wife is awesome

kinda hate dogs though

Οὖτις, Wednesday, 16 November 2016 21:53 (three years ago) link

three years pass...

We need u in these trying times shakes

I like how the large majority of this thread has nothing to do with me

Οὖτις, Monday, 6 April 2020 19:30 (one month ago) link

but sure, happy to help

Οὖτις, Monday, 6 April 2020 19:31 (one month ago) link

Earlier today BG and I tried to summon you to open an An RIP BoJo thread. I might have missed it but somehow you seem to have done the trick all the same!

haha I did see he was hospitalized...

Οὖτις, Monday, 6 April 2020 19:38 (one month ago) link

omg and he's in ICU too!?

hold tight, duty calls

Οὖτις, Monday, 6 April 2020 19:39 (one month ago) link

my man <3

two weeks pass...

Where are you?

The Corbynite Maneuver (Tom D.), Wednesday, 22 April 2020 22:17 (one month ago) link

RIP Shakey Mo Collier

na (NA), Wednesday, 22 April 2020 22:50 (one month ago) link

LOL

The Corbynite Maneuver (Tom D.), Wednesday, 22 April 2020 22:55 (one month ago) link

yeah i just realized the sly listening thread hasn’t been updated in two weeks ...

budo jeru, Wednesday, 22 April 2020 23:08 (one month ago) link

Precisely. Has he been posting anywhere else?

The Corbynite Maneuver (Tom D.), Wednesday, 22 April 2020 23:44 (one month ago) link

RIP Shakey Mo Collier

― na (NA), Wednesday, April 22, 2020 6:50 PM (three hours ago) bookmarkflaglink

God needed someone to tell him how wrong he was about politics.

Fetch the Bolt Thrower (PBKR), Thursday, 23 April 2020 02:39 (one month ago) link


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