Beginner Music Theory For Guitar pt3

We learn about Chords.


In Beginner Music Theory For Guitar pt2 we learned about scales and how to create them. This time we will learn about Chords how how to create them.

Basic Chord

A Chord is when you play three or more notes at the same time. The most common chords are Major and Minor, you have probably also heard of a Seventh Chord. The easiest way to make a chord is to start with a Major Scale. For instance C MAJOR = C, D, E, F, G, A, B, C. To make a Chord you use the first, third, and fifth notes of the scale (basically every other note in the scale), starting with the note of the Chord you want. Ex. C Chord = C E G, D Chord = D F A.


If the second note (“the Third“) is 2 whole steps up from the first note (“the Root“) then it is a Major Chord. If the the Third is only 1 and a half steps up from the first note then it is a Minor Chord. So, in the key of C Major the C chord is Major, the D chord is Minor, E is Minor, etc..
major/minor chords


You make a Seventh Chord EXACTLY like you make the other chords, except this time you add a fourth note – the Seventh. C MAJOR becomes C E G B. If the 7th is one half step below the Root note its called a Dominant Seventh. If the 7th is a whole step below the root it is a flatted seventh. So C MAJOR Dominant 7th, D MINOR flat 7th.
7th chords

One More Thing

In the last part of this course we learned that notes repeat every octave. Therefore, if a chord has a C in it, you can play multiple Cs, or any C, and it will still be the same chord.
C Chord

I think that is going to be all we are going to do in this article. In the next part we will start to put together what we have learned.

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