Rock Tonality Amplified
A Theory of Modality, Harmonic Function, and Hierarchy
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Rock Tonality Amplified presents an in-depth exploration of rock tonality. Building on several decades of research, this book develops a comprehensive music theory designed to make sense of several essential components of tonality. Within, readers learn to locate the chords they hear through various methods, to understand and predict harmonic resolution tendencies, and to identify the functions of chords as they appear in musical contexts. Further, the book offers a conceptual framework to describe tonal relations that are played out through entire songs, allowing readers to recognize the features that contribute to tonal unity in songs and the ones that are employed to create musical drama.
The book contributes to a wealth of methodologies in music theory, making it of broad interest to music scholars and students. Further, it balances speculative and practical approaches so that it has clear applications for analysis and pedagogy. It includes numerous musical figures and cites hundreds of songs from a wide variety of artists. Each chapter concludes with additional practice activities, allowing for easy adaptation to various pedagogical purposes.
Table of Contents
Chapter 1: Position Finding
Diatonic position finding
Chromatic position finding
The permanent Picardy third and related practices
Chapter 2: Tonicization
Factors in tonicization
Lydian and Phrygian tonicization
Extensions and inflections
Chapter 3: Harmonic Function
The primary functions
Transition and retransition functions
Chapter 4: Steady-Scale Systems
Steady-scale systems: conceptual background
Tonal patterns in steady-scale systems
Interactions between the Ionian and Aeolian tonics
Incorporating the Dorian tonic
Incorporating the Mixolydian tonic
Incorporating the Lydian tonic
Incorporating the Phrygian tonic
Conclusion: tonal endings
Chapter 5: Steady-Tonic Systems
Chromatic chords in context
Stepwise linear patterns
Trajectories by s1
Trajectories by f1
Chapter 6: Other Approaches to Tonal Organization
Mixtures of steady-tonic and steady-scale systems
Other modulatory practices
"The Ballad of Jenny Ledge"
"The Burning Down"
"Rikki Don’t Lose That Number"
"Best of All Possible Worlds"
Brett Clement is Associate Professor of Music Theory at Ball State University. His research focuses on repertoires that fuse elements of popular and classical music, including progressive rock and the music of Frank Zappa. His work has been published in Gamut, Music Theory Spectrum, Music Theory Online, Music Analysis, Perspectives of New Music, and Journal of Music Theory.