# please explain this for me???

Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by 1dreday, Oct 6, 2013.

1. ### 1dredaySupporting Member

Nov 22, 2009
i can read tab, and i'm learning scales, but what exactly is this and how do i read it? its an exerpt from the bassist's bible

Baiao Characteristics
Samba.
1) I9 - I9 - ii7 - V7 - iii9 - VI7 - ii7 - bII
2) I7 - I7 - I7 - I7 - IV7 - IV7 - I7 - I7 - V7 - IV7 - I7 - bIII7
3) I9 - I9 - I9 - I9 - bVI7 - V7 - IV7 - IV7 - III7 - bIII7 - bVI7 - bVI7 - v7 - v7 - I9 - I9

2. ### Ed Fuqua

Dec 13, 1999
NYC
Chuck Sher publishes my book, WALKING BASSICS:The Fundamentals of Jazz Bass Playing.
Without looking at precisely what you have, I'm not sure why they have this labeled baio/samba. That's a rhythm and these are chord changes.
If you take a major scale and harmonize it by building triads stacked in thirds, you get major, minor and diminished triads. You can refer to the function of those triads by using upper and lower case Roman numerals, upper case for those with a major third and lower case for those with a minor third. And the number indicates the scale degree it's built on. So for a major scale, that harmonization would be I, ii, iii, IV, V, vi, vii. The Arabic numerals indicate any notes that get added to the chord, either as a 7th degree or as a tension. So, in the key of C, a bIII7 would be Eb G Bb Db.

3. ### MalcolmAmos

What you have here is three chord charts, for three songs, that are to be played using a samba rhythm.
Using the Roman numbering system. For example:
If in the key of C the I9 indicates the C9 or Cadd9 chord. The ii7 indicates the Dm7 chord and the V7 would indicate the G7 chord. Normally if upper case it's a major chord and if lower case it's a minor chord. However, the above example does not hold true to that and is mixing several ways of writing chord names. Some write everything in upper Roman case - I don't so I'll let others go into detail on the bIII7. Some say potato . .......

This may help.
http://www.smithfowler.org/music/Chord_Formulas.htm

4. ### megafiddle

May 25, 2011
Could you explain that more?

I am wondering how you can tell that he's using mixed naming conventions. In other words,
how can you tell that's not what he actually intends (ie, the lower case chords are actually minors,
and the upper case majors)?

...

5. ### Djentleman

Nov 4, 2012
Dallas TX
The chords written like "bIII7" and the like are chords that have been sort of borrowed from the relative minor key (I apologize in advance if my explanation is unclear but I'm in high school and learned about this about a week ago)

So say for example the chart is in A major, so the iii chord would be built on C# (C#EG#) but the composer wants to use the 3 chord from the key of a minor so he notates it as bIII. Meaning the root note is down a half step and then a major chord is built off of it, making it a C major chord (CEG)
Like I said I just recently learned this so my explanation might be flawed but I hope this helps

6. ### MalcolmAmos

None of this is written in stone. You can use either method.

The 3 chord in a major key is a minor chord, however the 3 chord in a minor key is a major chord. I know little deep there, keep reading..... http://www.guitar-chords.org.uk/chords-key-c.html
Find the chords is C major. Write them down. Now find the chords in C minor. Write them down and lay them under the C major chords. See the need for the b?

So if you move between major and minor you need some way of identifying which you want used. My music is all major (Country and Praise) so I just rely upon upper case and lower case.

The "other" guys need something a little more advanced.

7. ### Lownote38

Aug 8, 2013
Nashville, TN
3 examples of Samba chord progressions. If we are in the key of Cmaj, this is how they would look...

1) C9 - C9 - Dmin7 - G7 - Emin7 - A7 - Dmin7 - Db
2) C7 - C7 - C7 - C7 - F7 - F7 - C7 - C7 - G7 - F7 - C7 - Ebmin7
3) C9 - C9 - C9 - C9 - Ab7 - G7 - F7 - F7 - E7 - Eb7 - Ab7 - Ab7 - Gmin7 - Gmin7 - C9 - C9

In order to read it, they need to tell you what "I" is. In my example, it's "C". I would say "be prepared to play these in any key in a samba feel".

8. ### megafiddle

May 25, 2011
Sorry, my question wasn't quite clear.

I would have interpreted those charts exactly as Lownote38 did, just above.

I understand the use of upper and lower case for the triads natural to a key.
But in those charts, why couldn't they be just as they appear, lower for minor, upper for major,
(just as you use for country)?

In the key of C, an Am is common. But an A or A7 is not unusual. I'm not sure it makes sense to
switch keys and use notation natural to the new key, just for one chord. Wouldn't it be more simply
treated as an accidental, as it normally would on standard bass and treble cleff notation?

...

9. ### MalcolmAmos

I've asked that same question, I see no reason to make it all that complicated. I always stick with upper case for major and lower case for minors. If the key is minor I still use lower case for the minor chords, i.e. i-iv-v7, but , like I have already said, I play very few minor keys.

Perhaps someone that uses the other method will answer and let us see why it is important to use that method. I suspect, as has been mentioned on this string already, that is what they were taught, so that is what they use.

10. ### RDUB

I've seen things written both ways. The whole idea of writing chord progressions this way is to make it simple. (It's also a great way to learn to think about songs.) If I'm writing a progression, I typically use accidentals where needed. Changing the key centre, while musically correct, would defeat the purpose. As Malcolm said, potato, potatto... but KISS rules!

11. ### Whousedtoplay

May 18, 2013
TEXAS
Now I'm confused.
In your chord charts the major chords are written in uppercase and minor chords are written in lowercase.

3) I9 - I9 - I9 - I9 - bVI7 - V7 - IV7 - IV7 - III7 - bIII7 - bVI7 - bVI7 - v7 - v7 - I9 - I9

It means that in some cases Baiao Samba harmonic progression requires v7 instead of V7.
Let's call it - Baiao Samba's characteristic chord progression known to Brazilian musicians as "harmonic cliches".
If you want to study of harmony in Brazilian (analyze functional harmony of Samba) music, get a different book.

Example.
"it's common in Samba to add dominant II7 chord:
II7-ii7-V7-I.
Check "the girl from ipanema"

Feb 21, 2012
Kent NY
13. ### Whousedtoplay

May 18, 2013
TEXAS
I think the problem is that some bass players are thinking in terms of "diatonic chord progressions".
In the OP example, we need to think in terms of "non-diatonic chord progression".
"We hear this non-diatonic alteration all the time in many of the styles of American music. It is especially common in many cool Bossa Nova tunes from the 60's."
Check the non-diatonic chord progression.

14. ### yodedude2Supporting Member

shouldn't the last chord in #2 be Eb7? (i see you have it written that way for the same chord name in #3, which i believe is correct.)

15. ### Lownote38

Aug 8, 2013
Nashville, TN
Ahh! You got me. That is supposed to be Eb7!!