New musicality video:
Tension and release are everywhere. It’s in how our bodies move, how we breathe, how we swallow our food. These two aspects provide the forward impetus that keeps music moving forward on the “canvas of time” https://www.musical-u.com/learn/harmonic-tension-and-release-resource-pack-preview/
When we are creating our own music through improvisation, understanding tension and release brings our music to life. Otherwise, our solos may sound bland.
While tension and release can be found in many aspects of music, one of its richest manifestations is in the area of harmony, and how our melodies intersect with the harmonic environment set up by chords and chord progressions.
Often, when beginning improvisers first learn to play over chords, they practice hitting the chord tones in their melodies. That can produce a “safe” improv, where everything blends and works well. But without some tension and release, there’s a risk of the music sounding static, bland, and boring.
This tension and release can be produced with chord tones through rhythm, dynamics, and other musical dimensions. But even more magic happens when you step out of the box and explore pitches beyond the chords – or, as Resident Guitar Pro Dylan Welsh shows us, even beyond the scale!
Yes, it’s a risk, but a risk worth taking. And the more you explore beyond the chord tones, the more you’ll find that all the “other” notes have varying degrees of tension that provide new and wondrous shades of harmonic coloration to your musical expression.
In this month’s Instrument Packs, Musical U’s Guitar, Bass, and Piano Pros open your eyes and ears to the possibilities of harmonic tension and release through fun and challenging improvisation exercises.
Learn more about Musical U Resident Pro Steve Lawson: http://stevelawson.net/
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