Last issue we discussed intervals -- the distance between any two notes.
If for some reason you didn't get that issue, or need to review it, it is
attached below right after this issue.
Any one note played is called a "unison".
Any two notes played constitute an "interval". But if you have 3 or more
notes played simultaneously (or at least reasonably close together), you
have a "chord".
So a chord is
simply a group of 3 or more notes played together.
A 3-note chord is called a "triad" (trio --
tricycle -- 3), and triads are the most basic form of chord. There are 4
kinds of triads:
all four kinds of these triads used in music, but far and away the most
used type is the major triad -- probably 75% or more of all chords are
major. Next comes minor chords -- maybe 15% of the chords in all of music
are minor. Bringing up the rear are diminished and augmented chords --
they are only used perhaps 2% of the time.
If chords were a meal, major chords would be
the main dish, minor chords would be a side dish, and diminished and
augmented chords would be the salt and pepper of the meal. In fact,
diminished and augmented chords ARE the salt and pepper of music. We don't
dwell on them, but use them to add spice and flavor to our musical pieces.
are composed of the root, 3rd, and 5th of a major scale.
So if we want a C chord, we simply take the 1st note of the C scale, which
is "C" (also called the root), the 3rd note of the C scale, which is "E",
and the 5th note of the C scale , which is "G". Those 3 notes together
comprise the C Major chord.
Minor triads are composed of the root, flat 3rd, and
5th of a major scale. So C minor would be "C", Eb", and "G". The only
difference between major and minor is the flat 3rd in a minor chord.
Diminished triads are composed of the root,
flat 3rd, and flat 5th.
So C diminished would be "C", "Eb", and "Gb". The only difference between
minor and diminished is the flat 5th in a diminished chord.
Augmented triads are composed of the root,
the 3rd, and a raised 5th.
So C augmented would be "C", "E", and "G#". The only
difference between augmented and major is the sharp 5th in an augmented
The symbols for these triads are:
Major maj (or just a capitol letter
such as "C")
Minor min m - (minus sign) (or just a
lower case letter such as "c")
Diminished dim (or a small circle
beside a lower case letter -- like a degree sign)
Augmented aug + (plus sign)
Have you taken the course on
Dress Up Naked Music" yet?