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Flamenco Chord Voicings

www.armoniamoderna.com

Flamenco Chord Voicings


www.armoniamoderna.com
Jos Antonio Prez lvarez
October 2012

1. Flamenco chord voicings.


2. Flamenco keys.
2.1. E phrygian key, por arriba.
2.2. A phrygian key, por medio.
2.3. F# phrygian key, dos por arriba or por Levante.
2.4. B phrygian key, dos por medio or por Granainas.
2.5. G# phrygian key, cuatro por arriba or por mineras.
2.6. C# phrygian key, cuatro por medio.
2.7. D# phrygian key, seis por medio.

Jos Antonio Prez lvarez

Page 1

Flamenco Chord Voicings

www.armoniamoderna.com

1. Flamenco chord voicings.


The Jazz harmony comes from piano and wind instrument like saxophone, but Flamenco
harmony comes from guitar, like Brasilian and Blues, therefore the tonalities and the vocings
more used are different. Although the tonal phenomenom is the same, there are another
aesthetic issues that conforms each style.
The Flamenco voicings are restricted to another rules, normaly, the upper structure is
mixed with lower structure, forming clusters. When a tension is forming cluster with a chord note
can be formalized with ADD sign and a number less than seven. In Flamenco poliphony almost
always the melody is in the bottom voice, and top voice is a pedal note. Most of Flamenco
melodies are based on A-G-F-E, that are the fundamental notes of the Andalousian Cadence.
The melody itself induces harmonize from the bottom voice with Andalousian Cadence in the
Phrygian tonality. This is something that has been extrapolated to the rest of Flamenco, and it
can be heard in the other tonalites.
Am

The open strings are very important to Flamenco sound, and usually an open string is a
pedal note in the cadence. The Flamenco sound does not accept soft and smooth chords like
CMaj7, in any case should be C/B or CMaj7/E, it needs complex chords with deep sound,
otherwise it is preferably a simple triad. In Flamenco style C7b9 is not a usefull chord, but
Caddb2/bB is one of the most important.
In Flamenco style avoid notes do not exist, the voicing is a matter of taste. It is a
cosequence of the downward harmonic continuity in Riemann sense, it is not because it be a
descending cadence. And of course, it is not because Andaluosian Cadence is a modal system,
it is completly tonal.

Am7add2,4,b6
IVm7

G7add2,4,6
bIII7

FMaj7add2,#4,6
bIIMaj7

Eaddb2,4,b6/b7
I/b7

AN ANp OA OAp ME MEp LVII MI MIp MI


LVII D7
I bVI+ IVm bVI Im bIII V bVIIm bII bVIIm V III

Jos Antonio Prez lvarez

AN
I

Page 2

Flamenco Chord Voicings

www.armoniamoderna.com

2. Flamenco keys.
It is necessary to review all the habitual tonalities to know each possibilities, and the most
common voicings. They do not must be studied from key, since the "cejilla" allows to change it.
The Flamenco keys must be studied from voicing, voicing and pedal notes define the colour in
absolute way, no in relative. The seven keys used in Flamenco are the keys that contain the
natural E note, evidently the first open string is the pedal note always. It should know what note
of the key is each open string. Out of key notes have interest too.

Phrygian key
String
E
B
G
D
A
E

E
1
5
b3
b7
4
1

D#
b2
b6
3
7
b5
b2

C#
b3
b7
#4
b2
b6
b3

B
4
1
b6
b3
b7
4

A
5
2
b7
4
1
5

G#
b6
b3
7
b5
b2
b6

F#
b7
4
b2
b6
b3
b7

G
6
3
1
5
2
6

F
7
#4
2
6
3
7

E
1
5
b3
b7
4
1

D
2
6
4
1
5
2

E
1
5
b3
b7
4
1

D
2
6
4
1
5
2

C#
b3
b7
b5
b2
b6
b3

B
4
1
b6
b3
b7
4

Relative major key


String
E
B
G
D
A
E

C
3
7
5
2
6
3

B
4
1
b6
b3
b7
4

A
5
2
b7
4
1
5

Relative minor key


String
E
B
G
D
A
E

Jos Antonio Prez lvarez

A
5
2
b7
4
1
5

G#
b6
b3
7
b5
b2
b6

F#
b7
4
b2
b6
b3
b7

Page 3

Flamenco Chord Voicings

www.armoniamoderna.com

2.1. E phrygian key, por arriba.


The E phrygian (RMS) key is the most common in Flamenco, is the relative key of C
major and A minor. The pedal note of these voicings is the tonic note that is in the open first
string, the open second string can be pedal note as prefect fifth in the key. The E phrygian key
is the most common "por Sole" and por Fandangos.

Am7add2

Asus2addb6

Dmadd2/F

D9/F#

1
2

3
4

2
3

1
2

C7add2

C/Bb

FMaj7add#4

3 4

Jos Antonio Prez lvarez

F7add#4

2
1

G7add2,13

G7add13

2
3 4

Eaddb2

2
3

Esusb2add4

1
4

1
3

Page 4

Flamenco Chord Voicings

www.armoniamoderna.com

2.2. A phrygian, por medio.


The A phrygian key is another of most used in Flamenco, is the relative phrygian key of F
major and D minor keys. The pedal note is the first open string as the perfect fifth of the key.
Bb7 and Gm6 are common substitutions of Bb, the second degree bII of the key. The A
phrygian key is the most common "por Seguiriyas" and "Sole por Buleras".

Dmadd2/F

Dsus2addb6 G7add13

C7add2

C9

Gmadd6

1
2

3
4

3 4

Gm6

Bbadd#4

1
4

Bbadd#4/Ab

Bb9#11/F

1 1

3
2

Aaddb2

3 4

1 1 1

3 4

Asusb2/G

2 3
2

1
4

1
3

2
3

Jos Antonio Prez lvarez

Page 5

Flamenco Chord Voicings

www.armoniamoderna.com

2.3. F# phrygian, dos por arriba or por Levante.


The F# phrygian key is the relative phrygian key of D major and B minor keys. It is the
most common key in the "Cantes de Levante", it includes Tarantas, Cartageneras, Levanticas,
Mineras and Tarantos. The pedal note is the first open string as the minor seventh of the key.
These "Palos Flamencos" have their origin in the Fandango, thereby most of musical form is
composed in D major key, making use of diatonic substitutions and secondary dominants, and
an Andalousian Cadence in last section in relative F# phrygian key. The most famous Flamenco
chord F#sus4addb2 belongs to this key.

DMaj9add4

F#7

Bmadd2b6

E7

A7

A7/G

1
1

2
3

2
3

D9/A

D9/F#

G7add13

G7add#4,13

3
4

1
2

3
4

F#7sus4addb2

1
2

G/F

Jos Antonio Prez lvarez

Page 6

Flamenco Chord Voicings

www.armoniamoderna.com

2.4. B phrygian, dos por medio or por Granainas.


The B phrygian key is the relative phrygian key of G major and E minor keys, and is the
key of Granainas. Granainas comes from Fandango, therefore the most of musical form is
composed in G major key, and in the last section has a Andalusian Cadence to the relative
phrygian tonic. The pedal note is the open first string as the fourth of the key.

Emadd2

E7

Amadd2

D9/F#

1
IV

3
4

C/Bb

Bsus4addb2

Badd4

Badd4

2
3

2
3

CMaj7add#4

G7

Gadd13

1
2

D9/A

VI

2
3
4

Jos Antonio Prez lvarez

3 4

Page 7

Flamenco Chord Voicings

www.armoniamoderna.com

2.5. G# phrygian, cuatro por arriba or por mineras.


The G# phrigian key si the relative phrigian key of E major and C# minor keys. It is called
"por Mineras", but really the Mineras are in F# phrigian key. Some Flamenco guitarrists have
made contributions to this key and they call it in this way. The pedal note is E in the first open
string as the minor sixth.

C#m7add2/G# C#madd2,4 F#madd4

Badd2,4

B7add11/F#

Eadd2

1
1

IV

3 4

3
4

E7

Aadd2

A7add#4

A/G

G#addb2

1
2

1
1

1 1

G#/F#

1 1

1 1

2
4

2
3

Jos Antonio Prez lvarez

Page 8

Flamenco Chord Voicings

www.armoniamoderna.com

2.6. C# phrygian key, cuatro por medio.


The C# phrygian key is the relative phrygian key of A major and F# minor keys. The
pedal note is the open first string as the minor third of the key, although it is not usal with the
tonic first degree.

F#m7add4

B7/F#

1
1

F7add#4

Aadd2

A7add2

2
3

Eadd2

3
4

A7add2,13

Dadd2/F#

D9/F#

C#addb2

3
4

Jos Antonio Prez lvarez

IV

3
4

1
1

C7susb2

4
4

3
4

Page 9

Flamenco Chord Voicings

www.armoniamoderna.com

2.7. D# phrygian, seis por medio.


The D# phrigian key si the relative phrigian key of B major and G# minor keys. The pedal
note is E in the first open string as the minor second.

G#m7addb6 C#m7add2/G# C#m7add2 F#9sus4

B7add11/F#

3 4

Eadd2

E/G#

Eadd2

VI

3
4

2
4

Jos Antonio Prez lvarez

1
2

E7add#4 D#addb2/Fx D#addb2/A#

1
1

B9add11

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