Go to www.hooktheory.com

Emotions and scales?

I’ve been trying to educate myself to be able to create the emotions and also characteristics of certain keys for two weeks now but I don’t get anything close. I really need some help or guidance, please? Can someone help me understand these chord maps symbols, I simply don’t know what the chords are to be able to use the maps.

This guy says pick an emotion (link 1) and simply use the corresponding chord map (link 2) it sooooo easy. haha


Stay safe

1 Like

I just looked at that stuff and WOW are some people over thinking this stuff!! What a nightmare!
This is a great example of someone trying to be helpful but having the completely opposite effect.

The idea of identical keys (say D minor and G minor) producing completely different emotional effects is highly dubious in the context of modern popular music where fresh song ideas (and even well-known songs) will be completely transposed to fit whatever key the singer is most comfortable with, and then the chords re-voiced to work well in that final key.

Music is just a language to express ideas, and the effect of chords - like words - depends entirely on context. For example a Ddim chord sounds clangy and unpleasant by itself. Insert it between playing first an Fmaj and then playing a Cmaj however, and the Ddim suddenly sounds complex, yearning, and essential to the resolution (you can milk it further by adding an upper C to the Ddim if you like, making it a Dmin7(b5) ). It’s all about context.

To me, trying to come up with meaningful progressions with chord maps is like trying to create sentences using word maps. It’s a crude way of constructing a thought, and likely only a rough approximation of what you’re trying to say.

Start by studying the basic chord progressions used in whatever genre of music you’re trying to create, then try (for example):

  • Linking the chords by inserting some extra ones
  • Extend some chords (particularly the linking ones) by adding sevenths, ninths, and suspensions
  • Invert chords to fine-tune their brightness and give structure to the bass part

As part of this experimentation, new variations on the progression will suggest themselves to you.

Hookpad is a fantastic tool to explore these options, allowing you to iterate over the chords in a progression and use the tickboxes to change the complexity and tonality and sophistication of each chord.

Instead of trying to work out “on paper” what sounds right according to someone else’s formula, start with some solid roots and then explore and learn the options by ear - it’s far more satisfying!

Good luck!

Thank you soooooooo much for demystifying this topic for me in one sharp swoop haha I’m onto it thank you. Just reading over the book one and two till they keep sinking in. I’m forgetting a lot and a lot is hard to understand but I’m picking little nuggets up each time I read.

Stay safe

This video is very good as well: