Arranging II harmony University 2016

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Arranging II

Harmony University 2016


Instructor: Steve Tramack



To learn enough to be able to arrange a full-length song in the barbershop (contestable) style, and to feel safe and encouraged while doing so!


After a review of the basics, we’re going to jump right into arranging a song together. We’ll have opportunities for both group and individual efforts throughout the week, and will explore several different areas as part of the arranging process, including:

A review of triads and four-part chords and modes (minor, major, half-diminished, fully-diminished, augmented)

  • Four-part triads

  • Seventh chords

  • Ninth chords

  • Add sixth chords

  • Thirteenth chords

  • Non-vocabulary chords

Chord voicing

Harmonic Movement

  • Harmonic Rhythm

  • Circle of fifths

  • Progression and retrogression

  • Tonic and subdominant as “free” chords

  • Progression by half step

  • Chromatic mediant movement

  • Use of diminished chords

  • Tritone substitutions

  • Exceptions

A System for Harmonizing Out-of-Chord Melody Notes

  • Determination of harmonic pillars

  • Identification of out-of-chord notes

  • Learning and applying the system

The Arranging Process

  • Approaches

  • Different “roles”

  • Various ways to determine harmonic pillars

  • Vertical and horizontal arranging

  • Arranging “backwards”

Study of Embellishment

  • Swipes, echoes, backtime, patterm bell chords, pyramids, cascades, etc.

  • Intros

  • Interludes

  • Tags

  • Key Changes

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