C Major & Chords...

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Wakeon
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C Major & Chords...

Post by Wakeon » Wed Apr 06, 2016 5:29 pm

Hey guys!
I wanted to ask you something about chords. Indeed, i saw that chords : "c dm em f g am bdim" had a link with C Major Chord but i don't understand anything about that (even if i know what is a C Major).
Can you help me please :)?
Thanks

stringtapper
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Re: C Major & Chords...

Post by stringtapper » Wed Apr 06, 2016 6:01 pm

Crash course:

A major key has a corresponding seven-note major scale. In the case of C major the scale is…

C–D–E–F–G–A–B

Each note in the scale is called a "scale degree." So if you abstract these scale degrees as numbers then you can apply them to any key:

1–2–3–4–5–6–7

You can build chords off of each scale degree by stacking notes from the scale in 3rds.

So the chords in C major are (reading up from the lowest line)…

G–A–B–C–D–E–F
E–F–G–A–B–C–D
C–D–E–F–G–A–B

In the case of a major key there are only three qualities of triads (chords with three pitches):

Major
Minor
Diminished

Triads have three chord tones: a Root, a 3rd, and a 5th

G = 5th
E = 3rd
C = Root

The quality of the triads are based on the intervals between their chord tones. You have the interval between the Root and the 3rd, the interval between the 3rd and the 5th, and the interval between the Root and 5th.

Here's the interval structure of the three types of triads (so far):

Major Triad

Root–>3rd = Major 3rd (M3)
3rd–>5th = Minor 3rd (m3)
Root–>5th = Perfect 5th (P5)

Minor Triad

Root–>3rd = Minor 3rd (m3)
3rd–>5th = Major 3rd (M3)
Root–>5th = Perfect 5th (P5)

Diminished Triad

Root–>3rd = Minor 3rd (m3)
3rd–>5th = Minor 3rd (m3)
Root–>5th = Diminished 5th (d5)

So going back to our triad in C major…

G–A–B–C–D–E–F
E–F–G–A–B–C–D
C–D–E–F–G–A–B

If we look at the intervals of each triad we see that qualities are…

C Major—D Minor—E Minor—F Major—G Major—A Minor—B Diminished

We show these triad qualities with Roman numerals. Upper case for major triads, lower case for minor triads, and lower case with a superscript 'º' added for diminished triads.

So the chords of any major key are…

I–ii–iii–IV–V–vi–viiº
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Wakeon
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Re: C Major & Chords...

Post by Wakeon » Wed Apr 06, 2016 7:15 pm

So what i "c dm em f g am bdim" ?

Shift Gorden
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Re: C Major & Chords...

Post by Shift Gorden » Wed Apr 06, 2016 7:20 pm

Boom, stringtapper! Great crash course!

Wakeon - stringtapper explained, mate. The chords you are referring to are exactly these:
C Major—D Minor—E Minor—F Major—G Major—A Minor—B Diminished

We show these triad qualities with Roman numerals. Upper case for major triads, lower case for minor triads, and lower case with a superscript 'º' added for diminished triads.

So the chords of any major key are…

I–ii–iii–IV–V–vi–vii
All of those chords use notes from the scale of C major.

stringtapper
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Re: C Major & Chords...

Post by stringtapper » Wed Apr 06, 2016 7:21 pm

^ that
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Shift Gorden
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Re: C Major & Chords...

Post by Shift Gorden » Thu Apr 07, 2016 4:06 pm

stringtapper wrote:^ that
Great explanation mate - I'd sort of forgotten all that good stuff. ;)

crumhorn
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Re: C Major & Chords...

Post by crumhorn » Fri Apr 08, 2016 11:18 am

the only info that I would add to that for the complete beginner is the number of semitones in each of those pitch intervals...

minor 3rd = 3 semitones
major 3rd = 4 semitones
perfect 5th = 7 semitones
diminished 5th = 6 semitones

where a semitone is the pitch interval between each key and it's adjacent keys on a piano or one fret on a guitar.
"The banjo is the perfect instrument for the antisocial."

(Allow me to plug my guitar scale visualiser thingy - www.fretlearner.com)

stringtapper
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Re: C Major & Chords...

Post by stringtapper » Fri Apr 08, 2016 2:53 pm

Yes, good.

Note that a music fundamentals course could take an entire semester to cover everything in my first post. There would be other materials of course (rhythm, meter, key signatures, clefs, etc.) but it is a lot of material for an absolute beginner, and trying to keep that in mind and to relate back to when you didn't know anything is one of the hardest parts about teaching music.
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