Re: Cross Harp Discussion

Date sent:  7-JUL-1995 11:52:19 

>Date: Tue, 06 Jun 1995 08:57:32 +0000
>From: Harpo <craig@xxxxxxx>
>Subject: Cross Harp Discussion
>Question:  When playing cross harp with a song in G, is the natural F (5 draw)
>on the C harp to be included when playing 2nd position?  I ask because it is 
>not part of the G scale.  In depth (theory) answers welcome :)

Hopefully not TOO in depth...the answer is YES if you're playing a blues 
tune (and some others as well).  Why?  Because the F natural fits into the 
Gdominant7 chord, which is normally just called G7.  It gets the name 
"dominant 7th" because it is a 7th chord (I, III, V, and VII) based on the 
dominant (or fifth) step of the scale (G would be the dominant in the key 
where C is the tonic, and in the key of C the F is natural not #).  You 
will see this chord in many blues and folk progressions because of what I 
like to call the "amen"...IV-I cadence.  Anyway in the key of G the IV 
chord is a C and you will see a G7 many times leading into the C because 
the F natural (VII of the G chord) likes to "resolve" down a 1/2 step to the 
E (III of the C chord) sort of the same way it does in an amen (where the I of
the IV chord resolves to the III of the I chord).

Another reason this note sees so much use is that it is one of the "blue" 
notes (bIII, bV, and bVII are the more common ones) being a bVII in the key 
of G.  A lot of times you'll hear the harp player flicker from the 
2drawbend to the 1draw during the turnaround V chord, the 2drawbend F 
natural being not only the bVII in the G chord but also the bIII in the D 
chord as well and in this case strongly resolving up a whole step to the G.

I think one of the things that characterizes blues is that the background 
chords are usually major chords but the melodic lines include components of 
the minor scale (blue notes) and the interplay between major and minor 
modes creates a sort of stress that may or may not relieve itself in the 
chord progression.  

You should be aware though that for some types of music, especially where a
Gmaj7 chord occurs you should avoid playing the F natural at all 
this case the 7th chord is based on the key of G and so the chord will consist
of G, B, D, and F#.  These are some very pretty sounding chords and the 
inclusion of a dominant 7th would destroy the feel of them.  We don't usually 
run into maj7 chords in for songs where you do find them you might
consider using a position other than crossharp to play 12th, 
which will give you notes not only for the Imaj7 but for the IVmaj7 as well. 

Bill Long >-- StarGazer --< N2LAG	longwj@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
    longwj@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx			   (

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