Several years ago I followed an online music forum. One of the things we did was post music we had written. Somebody once posted a simple piece that had only two chords, the tonic and dominant (for non-musicians, a lot of western folk music has little more than these two chords, in the key of C it would by the C chord and the G chord). This music was written for a music theory class to demonstrate the use of the dominant. I read the description and listen to the music. A light bulb came on.
(Note – I’m going to talk about the “mechanics” of the music while trying to stay non-technical. You can skip this and just listen if you’d rather ;))
After seeing the above described music I decided to try a little test. In my test I wrote a series of little miniatures. I started with one in the key of C that only had the C chord. I then moved to G and had G chord and D (tonic and dominant). Each piece was a fifth above the preceding one and added a little harmonic complexity. I added more complex chords, then did simple modulations to related keys and then extreme modulation using, say, the dominant as the Neapolitan of another key, etc. I finally made my way to quartal harmony at F.I then, for good measure, threw in a piece with no chords and no key, though it is almost in C.
Of course I had to add some complexity to even the simple pieces:)
These little pieces are all in major. I was planning on doing the same thing in minor keys starting with very complex and getting simpler down to c minor but never got around to it. Each little ditty is from 30 seconds to a minute in length. So the 8:44 mp actually contains 13 different pieces of music averaging less than a minute each. I wrote this in the middle of writing my preludes, though these are more loosely connected than the preludes are. Like the preludes these are all written for the piano.
I hope you enjoy these miniatures, which were all Child’s Play!