Topic: More applications of Chordie information
Here are some thoughts from a long time user posted
for general information.
I was recently reading an article in "Wired" about
artificial intelligence, AI. It was talking about a
warehouse that at first look seemed random and disorganized.
Well, to our usual way of looking at things, , it was. But when we
learned the system was set up to serve robotic pickers, it made
sense. Shelves were stocked for the ease of robots, all carrying
computerized shopping lists.
For the sake of the information, let's say some popular items were
available in every row. That meant less travel time for the
robots. The results were impressive -- Sam Walton would be
The author claimed this was all brand new thinking, never before
in thousands of years of history.
I disagree. Don't you know that your guitar neck has the same
feature? You can find the same tone in different locations. If
I am on the 7th fret D and going for the C, I can find that tone
either on the fifth fret or the tenth. In a sense, then, random
access or multiple avenues have been around as long as the guitar
has been around.
Practically, our guitar, a treble instrument, has three octaves
plus whatever we can get out of the e string from frets twelve to
twenty-two. Stretching the point, there are four octaves. Unless
my math is wrong, that means there are 11 positions for each of
the notes on the twelve note scale. So, we have multiple positions
of the exact same tone. No wonder no one wants to learn
Do you know you can use the keys provided by Chordie to
help you play the tune right off the bat?
I have been using Chordie for years, even edited the
lyrics to a song or two. It has been a valuable resource
for words and the keys, or the accompanying chords, of
almost every song I ever looked up. One good thing is that
I never actually broke anyone's copyright, just gained a
ready reference to the song structure.
Over the years, I have learned to chart the songs in the
traditional Nashville way, or some variation of it, devised
by the Jordanaires in the 50's. That looks something like this:
A A A D
D D D A
I'm sure you get the idea. Each letter is a bar.
When we introduce the concept of "the landing note," this all
starts to have meaning. We know, in playing, we can get pretty
far from the standard square, but as long as we hit the right
landing note at the right time, say the c note on beat of
the chord change, we are going to get away with it. That's why
improvisers talk about the importance of knowing the landing
note. Another place where it helps to know the territory is in
walk ups. Walk ups can originate in several places, as long as
they end on a place that makes sense. Knowing the key of the
upcoming change is required.
This advice is more appropriate for traditional folk, blues, and
country players than for more exotic types.
In closing, I hope this has shed some light on how a musician
has used Chordie to help in solo and improvisation. The information
is usually thought of for strumming, but it has additional uses.
(Note: The third fret c is the piano middle c. The first fret c is
the octave. The thirteenth fret c is the octave. The twentieth fret
c is the octave. All the others are repeats, in different locations.)