Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Building on Major and Minor

Previously we dealt with how to construct major and minor triads. If you haven't, click on major or minor for those lessons.

For this lessons we want to see how major and minor triads can be applied in a specific key, so we can end up playing a basic song. In the previous article we covered the 1-4-5 chords with inversions for the key of C. Now we will look at the rest of the numbers within that key.

Why do you need this?

Well, if you don't know how to read sheet music, you will have to depend on patterns that allows you to play any song. Once you understand these patterns, all you need to do is figure out which bass note (this is normally the lowest note and root in the song) is being used. Once you know the bass note, there are only a few chords that you can play against that bass note. This is why the number system is very critical to grasp in all 12 keys. It is also important to practice the different chords that accompanies that particular bass note

Here are the numbers with the chords you can play (in the most basic sense only using right hand chords and left hand bass note): 

If you start practicing this chart, just go up from 1 to 7 with only the root chords and listen to how it sounds. Repeat that with 1st inversions and then 2nd inversions. You will hear that it probably sounds like a song you've heard somewhere. The other alternative is to play from the 1 and go down to 7 and then 6. This is used a lot in different genres!

Please note that this is based on the major triad chord chart that was provided in the previous lesson (Major triads with inversions). The numbers 2, 3, 6 & 7 is supposed to be minor chords. so if you play the right hand chord with left hand bass, exclude the last note in your right hand then you'll end up playing a minor chord for that bass note! When I play, I make use of the major chord instead of the minor triad. It sounds better.

Once you practice all these chords in C, try to transpose them to the rest of the 12 keys, If you master this, I promise you will be able to play in a band within a month!! 

Please feel free to comment, share or ask questions regarding this post.

God bless!

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