Is there a best key for writing dance music in? Yes...

Discussion of music production, audio, equipment and any related topics, either with or without Ableton Live
Khazul
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Re: Is there a best key for writing dance music in? Yes...

Post by Khazul » Thu Apr 14, 2011 11:20 am

^ Definately - just do a basic mix a sequence of tracks all in the same key to see how flat it can be, then try another mix that traverse some useful keys and how much more interesting the result is.
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simpleton
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Re: Is there a best key for writing dance music in? Yes...

Post by simpleton » Thu Apr 14, 2011 11:57 am

B flat. Sounds brassy.
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ikeaboy
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Re: Is there a best key for writing dance music in? Yes...

Post by ikeaboy » Thu Apr 14, 2011 12:39 pm

I can't find it but there was an interview with one of the Detroit producers talking about people crying at The Music Institute nights when tracks in the key of E minor were played.

A lot of my tracks come out of MIK (yes I bought it and no I don't think it's cheating) as being one of two keys e.g. 5A/8A or something like that (the first track here is an example http://nuterecords.bandcamp.com/album/t ... ong-player].

I often wonder am I making my tracks too hard to digest because of the melodies I use. Some of my tracks sound fine by themselves but odd in a mix and not because of the mix down.
So all interesting stuff to know, ten years in and I'm still starting out.

d-track
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Re: Is there a best key for writing dance music in? Yes...

Post by d-track » Thu Apr 14, 2011 1:15 pm

Dmin is very nice. first of all there almost no black keys and its simplifies the writing process (at least for us, the less educated on piano play), plus D for most bass notes is satisfying, deep enough but not ridiciously deep therefore not screaming for hq subwoofer.
I dont know why would it be sadder than for exmple D? (sorry i couldn't find the normal cross:). can anyone explaint this?
and maybe a stupid question but are there any advantages/disadvantages of using minor chords in a major scale?
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Re: Is there a best key for writing dance music in? Yes...

Post by AceLuby » Thu Apr 14, 2011 1:25 pm

A lot of the songs I hear are in dorian mode, usually D dorian (sounds very similar to Dm). All white keys resolving to the D.
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Khazul
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Re: Is there a best key for writing dance music in? Yes...

Post by Khazul » Thu Apr 14, 2011 2:19 pm

ikeaboy wrote:I often wonder am I making my tracks too hard to digest because of the melodies I use. Some of my tracks sound fine by themselves but odd in a mix and not because of the mix down.
So all interesting stuff to know, ten years in and I'm still starting out.
The usual cause of something being hard to mix is too much harmonic richness or too much musical richness in the intros and outros (assuming compatible beats). If its a long track, thenif there isnt a rhythmically strong but harmonically and musicaly weak part in the middle somewhere, lazy DJs might not bother to with it because they cant find a convenient point to shorten it etc as well. Sure odd keys and modes dont help either, but very rare that bothers me when constructing a set - I actuallly like the extra clasing and tension caused by non key locked (ie old school vinyl mixing), non harmonic mixing at times.

Just listening to some of you tracks - interesting. The sounds you choose are indeed somthing of a nightmare for someone who likes muscially clean - even being used to the distasters that pass for electro house remixes doesnt come close to the harmonic clashes in your stuff (not meant negatively in your case :)) - just there are alot of broad spectrum sounds heavy with unrelated harmonics that might reduce 'accessability' of your music'?
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foxymethoxy
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Re: Is there a best key for writing dance music in? Yes...

Post by foxymethoxy » Thu Apr 14, 2011 3:57 pm

Looks like electronic musicians should learn to play something other that the white keys lmao

ikeaboy
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Re: Is there a best key for writing dance music in? Yes...

Post by ikeaboy » Thu Apr 14, 2011 4:18 pm

Khazul wrote:
ikeaboy wrote:I often wonder am I making my tracks too hard to digest because of the melodies I use. Some of my tracks sound fine by themselves but odd in a mix and not because of the mix down.
So all interesting stuff to know, ten years in and I'm still starting out.
The usual cause of something being hard to mix is too much harmonic richness or too much musical richness in the intros and outros (assuming compatible beats). If its a long track, thenif there isnt a rhythmically strong but harmonically and musicaly weak part in the middle somewhere, lazy DJs might not bother to with it because they cant find a convenient point to shorten it etc as well. Sure odd keys and modes dont help either, but very rare that bothers me when constructing a set - I actuallly like the extra clasing and tension caused by non key locked (ie old school vinyl mixing), non harmonic mixing at times.

Just listening to some of you tracks - interesting. The sounds you choose are indeed somthing of a nightmare for someone who likes muscially clean - even being used to the distasters that pass for electro house remixes doesnt come close to the harmonic clashes in your stuff (not meant negatively in your case :)) - just there are alot of broad spectrum sounds heavy with unrelated harmonics that might reduce 'accessability' of your music'?
You make a few interesting points there and thanks for the feedback too, what you saying is really interesting. I usually put music together and I still call it 'dance' music but I don't think much of it is DJ music, probably half that album isn't (thanks for listening it's free to DL just name price as zero).

I remember an old article on Orbital back in the day that made the same observation on their stuff and why it rarely popped up in sets. I think with them it was the chord progressions, dance mixes (maybe I'm wrong) work floors better with steady hypnotic bass notes rather than root notes shifting a lot under complex changing chords (Sorry I can't really talk music theory lingo).

Orbital had great live sets however so maybe if a whole set has song structures people get into it at that level.

I like some Detroit techno because it often has song structures as opposed to tracks (not that I don't love and make tracky music sometimes)

Tone Deft
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Re: Is there a best key for writing dance music in? Yes...

Post by Tone Deft » Thu Apr 14, 2011 4:42 pm

"A. Good country key."
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simpli.cissimus
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Re: Is there a best key for writing dance music in? Yes...

Post by simpli.cissimus » Thu Apr 14, 2011 5:49 pm

:arrow: :arrow: :arrow:
No! I'll never use the Push-App Live 9 !!!

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