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Goner Message Board / ???? / The lost art of the mid-song key change
Posted: Mar 30, 2007 3:53 pm
 
It seems to me that this isn't being used as much as it used to, and well, it's a shame. I mean, if you're playing a 3 minute song like:

verse/chorus
verse/chorus
bridge
chorus

changing the key before or in the middle of the last chorus totally makes the song better! The examples are many. You know how when you're singing along to "Living On a Prayer" and in the third chorus the key changes, and suddenly you can't sing along with it because it's out of your range? That's so much fun!

Pop, rock, punk, polka, it pretty much works in every genre. I'm not saying anything novel here, but it'd be great if this idea could be resurrected.
Posted: Mar 30, 2007 4:32 pm
 
"Weekend" by the Dictators does it!
Posted: Mar 30, 2007 4:44 pm
 
I just hit the Pitch Shift on my Autotune.

Singing/playing in tune is so passe. That's what computers are for.
Posted: Mar 30, 2007 4:45 pm
 
He's a Rebel by the Crystals does it on the chorus
Posted: Mar 30, 2007 4:53 pm
 
It's called modulation. "My Generation" does it four times. Agreed, under used classic songwriting technique. The idea is to go up in pitch to convey a sense of urgency.
Posted: Mar 30, 2007 4:57 pm
 
Just saw Josie Cotton do it last night w/ Nikki Corvette...Johnny Are You Queer...I think the Pets also had a song that did it last night. A classic pop move...KK and BBQ do it for a whole song intro at their gigs...I'm gonna use it in the next song I write...promise
Posted: Mar 30, 2007 5:01 pm
 
He's a Rebel by the Crystals does it on the chorus

Right before the 1st one!
When I saw this thread I immediately thought of that song.
Posted: Mar 30, 2007 5:02 pm
 
And it happens in Surrender right at the beginning of the first verse! Pretty crazy.
Posted: Mar 30, 2007 5:07 pm
 
"Call Me Lightning" by the Who does it!
Posted: Mar 30, 2007 5:07 pm
 
Is this what you guys are talking about?

http://www.frenchboxing.com/leftovers/munchie/anthem.htm
Posted: Mar 30, 2007 5:19 pm
 
Agreed, under used classic songwriting technique.

exactly... this is what "they" mean when "they" say, "they don't write songs like they used to."
Posted: Mar 30, 2007 5:23 pm
 
"Lodi" does it too.

Agreed, under used classic songwriting technique.

Sometimes I think songwriting is an under used classic songwriting technique.
Posted: Mar 30, 2007 5:33 pm
 
Sometimes I think songwriting is an under used classic songwriting technique.


zing!
Posted: Mar 30, 2007 5:35 pm
 
"Lodi" does it too.

So does "Lookin' Out My Back Door"
Posted: Mar 30, 2007 5:37 pm | Edited by: Crystal Lake
 
it's no lost art! my band does it in a couple of songs. it's a good tool to make any old pop song an epic.
Posted: Mar 30, 2007 5:37 pm
 
I used to change keys a lot when I played metal

even the Ramones do it
Posted: Mar 30, 2007 5:40 pm
 
lennon & mccartney songs are chock-full of all the songwriting tricks of the trade too --- "i'm only sleeping" is a good one, "girl," "i've just seen a face." i can't even begin to scratch the surface...
Posted: Mar 30, 2007 5:48 pm
 
Oh, and how could I forget "Walk the Line"?
Posted: Mar 30, 2007 5:50 pm
 
We're doing a Beatle tribute at the Rock School I run. Talk about a crash course in songwriting! In the age old Beatles/Stones debate, I alway take the Stones, but they were cavemen compared to the Beatles when it comes to songwriting. I've had to learn about 30 Beatles songs and try to teach them to kids as young as 8. On the flip side, we're also doing a Classic Metal show and it's a gas to see kids knocking out such chesnuts as "Angel of Death" and "the Number of the Beast".
Posted: Mar 30, 2007 6:07 pm
 
"Lightman... LIGHTMAN- we're playing in the key of D now"

Alex Chilton- Take Me Home and Make Me Like It
Posted: Mar 30, 2007 6:09 pm
 
lennon & mccartney songs are chock-full of all the songwriting tricks of the trade too --- "i'm only sleeping" is a good one, "girl," "i've just seen a face." i can't even begin to scratch the surface...

And I love Her
Posted: Mar 30, 2007 6:14 pm
 
chewy chewy
Posted: Mar 30, 2007 8:13 pm
 
Damagecase by Motorhead has a beautifull chord change to F# on the last verse! But most importantly....NO BREAKDOWNS.
Posted: Mar 31, 2007 4:03 am
 
carney - i guess you have to consider the beatles vs. stones songwriting mentors
george martin vs. andrew loog oldham
i think martin helped tremendously, leading by example and playing a crucial part in the arranging, etc. like a good dad
oldham just forced the guys to write - like the kind of dad who locks the kids in their rooms so he can fool around behind their mom's back
the learning curve is a bit different - but learnt just the same

tom petty has some great, although well-worn chord changes, etc. he is the king of the f sharp minor 7th shift into the bridge
Posted: Mar 31, 2007 4:47 am
 
I still perfer the stones, but the levels of sophistication can't really be compared. George Martin is a genius.
Posted: Mar 31, 2007 4:53 pm
 
Alex Chilton- Take Me Home and Make Me Like It

The Letter's got one right at the end, so A.C.'s been in on it from the very start.

even the Ramones do it

Babysitter!

AC/DC will often knock the key up a full step for the guitar solo, and then bring it back to the original key when they come back to the chorus. It makes the solos pop right out. ZZTop do it too.

Surf City.
Posted: Mar 31, 2007 5:07 pm
 
What about that HUGE intro in BAND ON THE RUN,
that was FAB-U-LOUS!!!

Posted: Mar 31, 2007 5:49 pm
 
"Weekend" also has a goddamn coda! A coda!
Posted: Mar 31, 2007 6:04 pm
 
band on the run is 3, 3, 3 songs in one!
"will we ever get out of here?"
Posted: Mar 31, 2007 6:25 pm
 
It's funny this came up.

I was just listening to Mink DeVille's 'Soul Twist' the other night and thought 'Goddamn, key changes are a cool curveball in a tune'.

And that one's a climbing key change!! Advanced!!
Posted: Mar 31, 2007 6:35 pm
 
Goddamn, key changes are a cool curveball in a tune'.

it happens all the time in just about every kind of music, from the beginning of time. whip out any piece of classical music from any century and you will find this phenomenon.

even if you hate classical music, it teaches all kinds of tricks to make your songwriting stand out and be.......well.........at least varied from the next guy's I, IV, V progression

(sorry.... classically trained pianist here...)
Posted: Mar 31, 2007 6:37 pm
 
It's funny this came up.

I was just listening to Mink DeVille's 'Soul Twist' the other night and thought 'Goddamn, key changes are a cool curveball in a tune'.

And that one's a climbing key change!! Advanced!!
Posted: Mar 31, 2007 7:14 pm
 
Tommy Roe's "Dizzy" steps up at least 3 or 4 times.
Posted: Mar 31, 2007 8:54 pm
 
pianist

Dammit! Now I have chocolate milk dripping out my nose!
Posted: Mar 31, 2007 9:34 pm
 
Coward of the County.
Posted: Apr 1, 2007 12:14 am
 
What's a key?
Posted: Apr 1, 2007 12:15 am
 
You use it to open a door, dummy!
Posted: Apr 1, 2007 12:19 am
 
Oh.....so you change doors in the middle of a song....like you start out... "Whoooaaa, I'm goin in the front door" then all of the sudden you switch and you're like " Whoooaaa, I'm goin' in the back door now, but I had to change keys all of the sudden and that's a lost art baayyyybaaayyy...."
Posted: Apr 1, 2007 12:21 am
 
Yeah, thats exactly it. And fuckin AWESOME.
Posted: Apr 1, 2007 3:06 am
 
chewy chewy

Don't forget Yummy Yummy as well!
Posted: Apr 1, 2007 3:09 am
 
Oh yeah, and every (or almost every) Monks song alerts you to the end of the song with a modulation up a step. Re: Boys Are Boys, Oh How To Do Now?, and Blast Off is like, nothing but modulation.
Posted: Apr 1, 2007 3:10 am
 
band on the run is 3, 3, 3 songs in one!
My friend and I timed it--Band on the Run is exactly 50% intro.
Posted: Apr 1, 2007 3:14 am
 
Boys Are Boys, Oh How To Do Now?, and Blast Off

Man, I wish I was listening to those songs right now.
Posted: Apr 1, 2007 3:25 am
 
constipation!!
Posted: Apr 1, 2007 4:25 am
 
Creedence is the shit with this most of the time I don't even realize I've been hoodwinked with a key change.
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