Author Topic: Reharmonization & Introduction  (Read 4928 times)

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Reharmonization & Introduction
« on: September 25, 2016, 09:48:39 PM »
My friends,

It is my intention to post a full discussion of Jazz Harmony and Theory on Compose Forum.  However, instead of slogging through the basic jazz theory, I have chosen to jump ahead into one of the most interesting subjects in jazz, Reharmonization, to activate this new section of the Compose Forum.  I think most members will fully understand the material but, since this is a forum, anyone can request clarification if needed.  Jazz tends to have a specialized vocabulary so I’ll supply definitions for words or expressions I suspect are jargon. 

The materials I post here will be in Finale format and each file will include examples available for playback as well as text.  This is a huge advantage over standard texts containing complex examples that must be played by the reader, especially if your primary instrument is something other than keyboard.  These files should be viewed in Page View and Chord symbol playback should be unchecked as Finale's choice of chord voicings is dismal to say the least.  For forum members who do not use Finale, a free player, NotePad, is available at: 
So, everyone should be able to access the posted files and benefit from the playback capabilities. 

Reharmonization is a rather large subject and I will post a “bite sized” topic about once a week starting with the attached file on this posting.  The the various reharmonization topics will be as follows:

Basic Reharmonization
1. Reharmonizing V as II-V & Tritone Substitution (attached below)
2. Reharmonizing Minor Chords
3. Reharmonizing V Chords
4. Reharmonizing I Chords

Advanced Reharmonization
  1. Contrary Motion
  2. Parallelism
  3. Slash Chords
  4. Ascending and Descending Bass Lines
  5. Build a Chord on Any Root
  6. Sus and Susb9 Chords
  7. Deceptive Cadences
  8. Chromatic Approach
  9. Anticipating a Chord with its V Chord
10. Using the Diminished Chord
11. Change the Melody
12. Change the Chord
13. Common Tones
14. Pedal Point
15. Combining Techniques

Most of the information here for Reharmonization comes from two seminal works:
1. The Jazz Theory Book, Mark Levine, Sher Music Co.
2. Reharmonization Techniques, Randy Felts, Berklee Press
I highly recommend purchasing these two excellent books.

Please comment if you like what you see and also feel free to make suggestions, give criticism etc. as this is my first experience with this forum thing and I’m mostly winging it.  I hope you find this useful.
« Last Edit: October 10, 2016, 10:40:23 PM by saltamontes »
Hold gently the hearts of those you love. For once they are gone, you will shed a thousand tears for each one you caused and the memory of each callous moment will be your companion.   Saltamontes


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Re: Reharmonization & Introduction
« Reply #1 on: September 25, 2016, 10:54:36 PM »
Thank-you for your hard work.

I would like to mention, however, that the forum only keeps attachments active for a short while. The best thing would be if you could host it somewhere and attach links here to the files.
"Writing music to be revolutionary is like cooking to be famous: Music’s main function is not revolution. – Alan Belkin "

"Saying something new about something old is still saying something new. – Jamie Kowalski"


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Re: Reharmonization & Introduction
« Reply #2 on: September 26, 2016, 06:28:06 AM »
Thank you, Saltamontes. I had general questions on reharmonization brewing, and you're already answering them!


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Re: Reharmonization & Introduction
« Reply #3 on: September 26, 2016, 07:51:04 AM »
Thanks Saltamontes, for the wonderful effort opening up new territory for the forum. I look forward to this section becoming a select hub for jazz people.

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Re: Reharmonization & Introduction
« Reply #4 on: September 26, 2016, 12:38:27 PM »
Ron, this looks wonderful! I know it will be a lot off work but I'm sure we will all benefit from your efforts and hopefully, as Reha said, they will bring us some new members and contributors.

And... It looks like I'll finally have to upgrade from Finale 2008. :)

Thanks for for taking the lead here.

The perceived not a sum of elements to be distinguished from each other and analyzed discretely, but a pattern, that is to say a form, a structure: the element's existence does not precede the existence of the whole, it comes neither before nor after it, for the parts do not determine the pattern, but the pattern determines the parts: knowledge of the pattern and of its laws, of the set and its structure, could not possibly be derived from discrete knowledge of the elements that compose it.

That means that you can look at a piece of a puzzle for three whole days, you can believe that you know all there is to know about its colouring and its shape, and be no further ahead than when you started. The only thing that counts is the ability to link this piece to other pieces...

Georges Perec - Life: A User's Manual


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Re: Reharmonization & Introduction
« Reply #5 on: September 27, 2016, 01:36:42 AM »
Thanks very much for the encouragement, guys.  Michel, I'm not certain how to set up a host for holding the Finale files.  Can you advise me?  I think this Jazz section will be quite fun, but of course I love this stuff so I am biased.  Perhaps we can occasionally work on a group reharmonization project, maybe even part of someone's original composition.  I have enough material for Jazz Theory and Harmony already in Finale format to keep us busy for well over a year, perhaps two, and I am creating new files all the time.  I am currently working on an interesting treatment regarding Modulation techniques and should have it ready very soon.  Anyway, I am open for all advice etc. and will try to accommodate any special requests.  For example, I have files for Slash Chords, Diminished Scale Harmony, Whole-Tone Scale Harmony, and much more.  These will all be posted in time but if someone is eager to see anything particular, I will post on request.

The other Ron (Saltamontes)
Hold gently the hearts of those you love. For once they are gone, you will shed a thousand tears for each one you caused and the memory of each callous moment will be your companion.   Saltamontes