Chords

There are many different types of chords, but we’ll focus on the common ones for now. Here we’ll look at major and minor chords. For extended chords, or chord inversions, go to the relevant pages.

Major chords

Major chords have three notes; the root, major third and perfect fifth.

Root- major third= four semitones

Root- perfect fifth= seven semitones

 

Minor chords

Minor chords have three notes; the root, minor third and perfect fifth.

Root- major third= three semitones

Root- perfect fifth= seven semitones

 

Major and minor chords are the same, except for the third.

 

Steps

There are 5 steps that you need to follow in order to work out a chord.

  1. Write the root of the chord.
  2. Find the third.
  3. Find the fifth.
  4. Check the semitones in the third.
  5. Check the semitones in the fifth.

 

Examples

 

In order to find C major:

Step 1: The root is C.

Step 2: Find the third.

C         D         E         F          G         A         B

1          2          3          4          5         6          7

 

Step 3: Find the fifth.

C         D         E         F          G         A         B

1          2          3          4          5         6          7

 

Step 4: Count up four semitones to find the third.

C      C♯/D♭      D        D♯/E♭       E         F        F♯/G♭       G

Start  1               2            3               4         5            6              7

 

Step 5: Count up seven semitones to find the fifth.

C       C♯/D♭       D        D♯/E♭     E         F       F♯/G♭      G 

Start    1               2             3           4         5            6             7   

 

 

In order to find C minor:

Step 1: The root is C.

 

Step 2: Find the third.

C         D         E         F          G         A         B

1          2          3          4          5         6          7

 

Step 3: Find the fifth.

C         D         E         F          G         A         B

1          2          3          4          5         6          7

 

Step 4: Count up three semitones to find the third.

C      C♯/D♭      D        D♯/E♭        E        F        F♯/G♭       G

Start                   2            3               4         5            6              7

Because we found out in Step 2 that the name of the third has to be E, it must be described as E♭instead of D♯.

 

Step 5: Count up seven semitones to find the fifth.

C       C♯/D♭       D        D♯/E♭     E         F       F♯/G♭      G 

Start    1               2             3           4         5            6             7   

 

 

 

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s