Chords keeping in same key ?


As a music theory rookie, i am struggling abit with chord track and chord assistant.
Is there a way to have drawn in chords in the chord track and chord suggestions from chord assistant always be restricted to one scale ?
And how do i set that scale ?

Are you saying that you would like to restrict the possible chords to a single scale, as in Cmaj will only allow the chords that are in that key?

If not what are you trying to accomplish?

That is indeed exactly what i wish for … :wink:

Cubase derives the scales from the chords you type in, not the other way around afaik. If you want to keep the chords in the same key you would have to learn to build chords on the scale degrees. (it’s not hard, a google search will produce hundreds of pages on the subject.)

Also note cubase is not saying what key the chord is in, rather it is saying what scale can be played over that chord.

The chords in C major would be: (C, Dm, Em, Fmaj, G7, Amin, Bm7b5)

I see, thank you for this useful info !

I can’t remember the exact term for it but you need to deselect automatic scale selection on the chord track, then underneath your first chord you’ll be able to select the scale you want to use, this will force the suggestions to be from that scale.

Wow, this sounds great, thx !!! :smiley:

That is incorrect, sorry.

Try putting in a C major chord, then an X chord. Set the scale to anything at all. The chord assistant simply derives the X chord choices based on the C maj chord without regard to the scale.

Indeed, doesnt work.
I find it rather strange that there is no option in cubase to keep all chords in chordtrack restricted to 1 key.
Maybe i ask to much … :slight_smile:

I think the philosophy is that the chord track is more sophisticated than that.

May I ask why you want it to have this function?

I’m pretty sure it works the way I said it does, as implied in this video from 7:20…

and also here -
Chord track - Scales.JPG
I just tried it myself.
Deactivate automatic scales, draw in a scale at the lower part of the chord track (ie, C Maj), draw in a Scale (ie, C Maj), draw an X chord and use the chord assistant to select a chord. The further up the complexity scale you select the more chords outside that scale will be available.

Not so. Whatever the manual might seem to say, the chord selection is not affected by the scale chosen. It does not constrain chord choice to the key inserted.

keeping chords in a major scale is easy to do manually

Use these chords only

C major, D minor, E minor, F major, G dominant 7th, A minor B half diminished

Then hit the transpose button and transpose the chords to any desired key

Speaking more theoritically…

Root should be major
chords build on the second degree (a tone up) should be minor
Chords built on trhe third degree should be minor (tone up)
Chords build on the fourth degree major (semitone up)
Chords built on the fifth degree dominant - tone up)
Chords built on the sixth degree minor (tone up)
Chords built on the seventh degree (tone up) half diminished

You can voice a chord by swapping the same notes to differen t positions, maybe missing some out, each triadic (three note) chord has three possible ‘inversions’
Anything else is breaking rules (which can be good)

a very clear explanation…

ive often used the chord track for progression ideas, never used the recommended chords as they sound a little too ‘POP’ for me !

but good for find those jazzy 9ths that i either didnt know, or would otherwise never think of playing.

That’s odd then… What’s the purpose of scale input?

I haven’t tested it really, but it should constrain notes to the scale. (not chords)

The scale functions looks like an extended version of what has been in Cubase since the VST days (1992).

You do realise that music in C major is not restricted to the notes of that scale? In fact, it would be pretty boring music if it did!

What? That would be anarchy! :laughing:

You can input any chords you want on the chord track. You can put any notes you want in any scale, regardless of what’s on the chord track. If you tell the track to follow the chord track, it will move (fix, improve, make more musical) your midi data to match the chords on the chord track. So, the Cubase chord track is like a pre-midi filter that can change your midi data in real time, and the chord assistant tries to help you make better choices about what sounds good.

The common 1 - 4 - 5 - 1 pattern you hear in most pop music is, for example in the key of C Major,
C major, F major, G major, C major. Why? Because if you number the notes in the scale:

1 C
2 D
3 E
4 F
5 G
6 A
7 B
8 C (octave)

The 4th note, F, is a fourth (that’s why it’s called that) - four notes up from C
The 5th note, G, is a fifth (that’s why it’s called a fifth) - five notes up from C

The key is the root note the scale starts on, that’s your 1 chord. The scale is created by the notes that follow the key, from 1 to 7 (whole whole half whole whole whole half, for a major scale).

The chord assistant helps you find chords that commonly come between two other chords, logically, or based on standard music theory. If you ever tried to write a bridge, you need to go to some other chord, different from 1, 4, 5, 1 (or whatever pattern your song happens to use) and get back to the root chord again. Chord assistant helps you write bridges and transitions based in common practiced music theory. If you drag the slider bar past 1 toward 8, you’ll see more unique, original, complex chords suggested. That is, you’ll get more types of interesting chords, than just 1-4-5-1. Farther to the right are more jazzy chord structures with 7ths, 9ths and diminshed tones.

If you drag a note on a part following chord track, the note background turns green if the note is in the chord, blue if its in the scale, and red if it’s neither. Red notes sound dissonant (that is, bad-sounding, based on the key/chord). So, for example, playing an E flat with a C Major chord - the E flat will be a red note, because it’s neither in the chord nor the scale.

You can generate harmonies from a vocal track following the chord track, and choose if they’re 2nd supporano, alto, tenor, etc. You can also generate chord track changes from an existing part.

I saw Greg Ondo demo all of this at a Cubase 7 meetup and a lot of jaws hit the floor.

Hope that helps!

Well put!