Because I’m personally so influenced by Nick Cave and Leonard Cohen, I’ve spent a lot of time reading poets like Sappho, Auden, Berryman, and T.S. Eliot, and listening to Jewish and Christian liturgical music, which were all major influences on them. Cohen’s “Suzanne” oozes with classical, religiously steeped references.
For example, if you are a solo performer singing along to tracks and all you bring on stage is your phone or iPod, you’re focusing all the attention on yourself as a performer. If you choreograph dance moves, or play into this isolated, “artist in the spotlight” vibe, perfect. But if you’re only doing this because you haven’t yet figured out how to play this music live, it’s a mistake to get up there in the first place. People look at that stuff, believe me.
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There is an exception, and that is the Locrian mode. This mode is a minor mode but it has two different notes from its parallel B minor: C (minor second) instead of C# and F (diminished fifth) instead of F#.
As I touched on before, there’s something really comforting about the idea of a cassette tape. It brings to life visions of a simpler, or at least, less chaotic time, in which music consumed us in a completely different way.
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Although most of these modes have been used quite sparsely in Western popular music (and mostly in jazz-fusion), some of them have been used more. The mode built on the fifth degree of a Harmonic minor scale, Phrygian (Major third), for example, has been used in heavy metal by guitarists such as Yngwie Malmsteen or Ritchie Blackmore, while the mode built on the seventh degree of the Melodic Minor scale is commonly used in jazz over altered dominant chords (for example, try to use G# Superlocrian on a G#7(♭13) and unleash its altered, dissonant character).
All of our mentored online courses come with six weeks of 1-on-1 professional coaching and feedback on your work. It’s like having a personal trainer, but for music! Whether you’re interested to dive deep into a topic covered by one of our courses, like Orchestration for Strings, Unlocking the Emotional Power of Chords, or The Creative Power of Advanced Harmony, or just to work with a Mentor directly to achieve a specific musical goal, we’re here to help!
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