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Can a sad melody be in major key?
I was reading a cool article about the connection between music and emotions and I wasn’t surprised to read that sad, emotional melodies are written in minor key.
It makes sense and I do agree with the writer. The minor key is dark, sad, pessimistic, melancholic, dramatic and unpleasant and there is a reason for that which we are not going to discuss here (at least not in this post).
The question is “Can I make a melody in major key sound sad?”
I think so! And I have been challenging myself trying to write one.
In this fingerstyle guitar lesson I am going to show you a sad melody in G major key.
Because we are playing in a major key, we have to work twice as hard to make this melody super sad. We don’t have the minor cadences to help us and we also don’t have a minor melody.
In order to win this challenge we will have to rely on other things such as: Expression, over-ringing and (not priority) few guitar effects.
Expression: This is the most important aspect you’ll have to develop. A sad melody needs to express a negative, melancholic mood. We can give this moon to any melody regardless if its a major or minor melody. Pluck the strings gently, play the bass note before the melody, use “tempo rubato” ( an expressive and rhythmic freedom in tempo).
Over-ringing: Make sure the melody resonate beautifully. Hold the notes and let me melody ring out nicely. The over-ringing technique can make everything you play sound more melancholic and calm.
Guitar effects: I use a lot of reverb and delay to sustain the notes.
This is an awesome guitar lesson that I am sure many of you are going to like.
As always take it step by step and only more on to the next part when you feel ready.
Let’s get started.
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