Questions tagged [chord-theory]

For questions about the theory behind building and naming chords. Do not use for questions about how to physically play a chord or chord progression on an instrument.

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How do I identify chord scales? (Chord scale theory)

I'm confused with how to identify chord scales because there are a lot of modes and combinations I have to consider. For example, Cmaj is C Ionian, and C13 is C Mixolydian, etc., right? Basically ...
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-1 votes
1 answer
75 views

Scale with major, minor, diminshed and augmented chords in it [closed]

I am looking for a well-known example of a scale, which has a minor, major, diminished and augmented chord in it. I mean the following: When I write down the scale and write down the triad on every ...
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9 votes
7 answers
1k views

Is it really necessary to learn the Number System in Music?

I've been playing the bass for several years now and want to learn how to play jazz. I started out learning classical music because before the bass, I played the violin, so it just came easier for me. ...
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3 votes
2 answers
77 views

Writing Key Signatures for Polytonality/Frequent Key Modulation

I looked through similar questions and didn't really see anything that answered a broader question so I guess I'll ask it. As I write music, my chord progressions tend to go through a lot of different ...
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10 votes
5 answers
562 views

Difference between Edim7 and Gdim7

I am a self taught keyboard player, and thus humbly request for guidance. While trying to learn Preludio in C Major (also, Prelude) by J S Bach, I was trying to note down the chord each bar has been ...
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1 vote
1 answer
68 views

How do you write a chord that has add#9, add-9 at the same time? [closed]

I'm confused about how to write a chord that has add#9 and add-9 at the same time. This is an example. What are the notes?
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3 votes
3 answers
405 views

What is the music theoretical basis for this chord transition?

I've got a song on the piano, which I've been learning for years now and for which I just recently decided to actually dive into a chord analysis. Early on in the piece, there's this climactic build ...
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3 votes
1 answer
98 views

In David Fuentes FOM workbook 1.3, what does the arrow next to the V mean?, And the T?

I'm working through David Fuentes (Berklee College of Music) FOM workbook. In exercise 1.3, what does the arrow next to the V mean in the 3rd bar?, And also the T? I figure the T means 'Tendency Tone'...
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8 votes
4 answers
764 views

Explain to a pop pianist: GECE to GC#A#C# alberti bass transition in K.545 2nd movt

As a pop pianist I'm trying to understand the logic in the alberti bass modulation that sounds beautiful and "right" but the notes seem way off the diatonic scale of G maj. The key signature ...
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4 votes
2 answers
238 views

With the melody in the bass line, what do you call these chords?

Here's an example of some chords. The two higher notes can be considered a C (power-) chord, i.e. root and fifth only. A very lazy interpretation and notation could therefore be C/A, C/B, C, C/F. ...
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5 votes
7 answers
1k views

What is my 7 if a chord does not specify the 7th?

I'm learning jazz and playing from lead sheets and am confused about how to handle triads that do not explicitly say what to do with the 7th. If the lead sheet I'm playing from just describes a chord ...
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  • 253
7 votes
4 answers
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Comping over the Cmaj7 in "My Favorite Things"

I am wondering if someone can give advice on how to make comping over the Cmaj7 chord in bars 5 through 8 sound more interesting. In the first 4 bars I play E-7 to F#-7 to E-7/G back to F#-7 and that ...
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5 votes
1 answer
83 views

When did drop voicings (e.g. drop, 2 drop 3 etc.) become codified for guitar?

Nowadays the Drop 2 and Drop 3 7th chord voicings for guitar are well-known, especially in Jazz circles. I don't remember hearing about these when I was reading Metal Solo You Can't Play Monthly back ...
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1 vote
2 answers
71 views

why does this Aminor "augmented" progression resolve in Gmajor?

I am currently discovering the fretboard through the lens of the augmented chords, meaning that I am playing around with augmented triads and by lowering/raising a note here and there creating minor/...
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2 answers
356 views

Harmonic analysis: Bm7b5 E7 Fmaj7 [closed]

Bm7b5, E7, Fmaj7 are of course the 2nd, 5th and 6th degree of A harmonic minor, but if I'm in Fmaj what are they?
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5 votes
5 answers
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How does the chord progression G-F-Eb-D work?

So, I've been this arpeggio sequence of G major to F major to Eb major to D major and can't really seem to figure out the theory behind it. All of the root notes fit into G Mixolydian flat 6 & G ...
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3 votes
3 answers
251 views

Goldberg variations - chord progression changes between variations

The Wikipedia article on the Goldberg variations sets out the chord progression which all variations follow. In some bars, different options are separated by commas and it says there are different ...
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6 votes
0 answers
167 views

Beethoven spelling a D#7 chord with a G-natural in 2nd movement of Emperor Concerto -- why?

In Beethoven's Emperor Piano Concerto, 2nd movement, there is an unusual spelling -- normally I'd expect the G-natural in the 1st violins in the 7th measure (top right of the image) to be spelled as a ...
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  • 161
1 vote
3 answers
143 views

Rachmaninoff Prelude G minor progression involves V chord instead of v chord

Why does Rachmaninoff seem to use a major V chord instead of a minor v chord in the attached measure (7th from the end) of his Prelude in G minor? The progression seems to be i-VI7-idim7-v-V-(in next ...
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2 votes
1 answer
79 views

From a D7(#9) to E6

I am trying to identify the resolution between the D7#9 to an E6. In roman numeral would I consider the resolve as: bVII7 to I? Also, does the #9(F) of D and 6(C#) affect the kind of resolution this ...
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3 votes
2 answers
87 views

I would like more information about the chord progression ivm7, IV, VIIM7, II, I, III

I've written a song with a chord progression in E major (I think) using borrowed chords from the parallel minor key. The progression is: C#m7, A, D#M7, F#, E, G#. I translate this Roman numerically: ...
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0 votes
2 answers
69 views

Ascending bass and chord progression in harmonic minor (example)

Hello again! Here is another simple harmonic minor progression with ascending bass. Questions: Is bar4 viio in second inversion? In bar6 there seems to be VI (Fmaj7) but at downbeat there is b and d. ...
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5 votes
1 answer
668 views

What is the chord played by 1-6-1?

I am not professional in music, and this may be a dumb question, but I couldn't find an answer for a long time. I observed that in a lot of cases, the chord is played as 1-6-1, and I don't know ...
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1 vote
4 answers
155 views

Is this diminished II7 or VII in harmonic minor?

1: [] Hi, I have some problems to analyze 2nd and 4th bar chords in this example in A minor (harmonic). For my understanding, 2nd bar chord can be either diminished chord in ii or vii. What about the ...
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  • 15
5 votes
1 answer
387 views

Chopin Prelude Op. 28 No. 1: A mysterious mutated note in the 12th bar?

In Chopin Prelude Op. 28 No. 1 (C major) has a particularly mysterious mutated note in the 12th bar shown in the red box (this note does not repeat the voice of the previous blue box): Question Is ...
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1 vote
3 answers
122 views

How to choose the major, minor, diminished chords, etc. along the chord progression

This is a typical circle of fifths chord progression. My question is how do we choose the chord to be major, minor, or diminished along with the progression: A -> D -> G -> C -> F -> ...
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  • 499
1 vote
1 answer
114 views

Novice trying to learn some music theory from an old book. Have I answered this correctly?

Good day. I'm trying to learn how to read notes from an old music theory book I borrowed from a friend. I need to answer some questions on this paper: https://i.imgur.com/20AHjxH.jpeg I can't find the ...
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0 votes
1 answer
63 views

Is there a name for the interval [1: 5/2]

I was looking at intervals here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_pitch_intervals and I noticed that they are all contained in the octave [1: 2] How does one talk about something like [1: 5/2]?
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3 votes
2 answers
133 views

Why does V7 resolve so well to VI∆7?

One progression I come across often (in tonicizations or modulations) is V7 to VI∆7. For example: G7 to A∆7. In playing with it, I notice that the V chord can be in many different forms, including ...
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3 votes
1 answer
155 views

What's the interval that I need to transpose from C minor to E minor?

Would this be a minor third of a major third? Sorry if this is a simple question, it's been a while since I studied music theory. For an example, suppose there was an Fmaj chord within the C minor ...
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0 votes
1 answer
66 views

Where does the second chord progression in the song imagination by Labrinth come from?

In the song Imagination by Labrinth, there's a chord progression that I didn't understand. The first progression in the song is I iii ii V in the key of D major. but then the second progression has ...
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5 votes
6 answers
691 views

Analysis of a jazz chord progression

Can you please explain the role of that Em7b5 in the following jazz progression in terms of functional harmony? | Cm7 | Em7b5 | Bbmaj7 | G7 |
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2 votes
2 answers
62 views

Can a secondary dominant be a regular major chord rather than a seventh chord? [duplicate]

Song name: Marriage Key of D D - F#M - Bm - A(or A7) Is F#M a secondary dominant to Bm? It is not seventh chord, but can major chords also work as dominant chords for the six chord?
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4 votes
2 answers
1k views

What chord is formed by the notes B, G, B? [closed]

What chord is formed by the notes B, G, B? My guess it is an augmented chord where the 3rd is omitted. thank you
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18 votes
5 answers
2k views

Why is this a G7b9?

My understanding is that one approach to naming a chord is to first identify the root. However in this case, if this is really a G7b9, the root 'G' does not appear in the chord. How am I supposed to ...
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3 votes
2 answers
160 views

Does this chord fit D minor?

Is it ok to play a g flat chord in a D minor scale? Basically I wrote a song where one riff plays a G flat at the end of it then goes right back to a D minor chord. It’s a rock song. It sounds cool ...
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5 votes
6 answers
927 views

How might this chord, D-F-G-C in D dorian, be named?

I've been playing around with a progression alternating between (roughly) D dorian and D mixolydian, roughly, with the left hand chords starting with D-F-G-C and resolving to D-F♯-A-C: It struck me ...
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5 votes
2 answers
228 views

What do the ending numbers (e.g., Db 1; Db/F 1/3) written below the chords mean?

What do the ending numbers written below the chord in this video really mean? Video link: Db 1, Db/F 1/3, Gb 4, Ab 5, Db 1, Db/F 1/3, Gb 4, Ab 5, Fm7 3m, Bbm7 6m, Gb ...
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3 votes
2 answers
178 views

How do chords work on guitar? [duplicate]

I mean, if we take the C chord for example; it is composed by the notes C, E and G, according to the theory, but on the guitar, the pressed notes are C, E and C (an octave lower than the previous one),...
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2 votes
2 answers
117 views

Can someone describe the theory behind this progression? F#m, C#m, D, A, F#, C#, D, A

Can someone describe the theory behind this progression? F#m, C#m, D, A, F#, C#, D, A It feels like it resolves on A. I assume it's in key of A, but my theory is weak and forgotten. I normally loop it,...
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2 votes
2 answers
89 views

Can extended chords be augmented or diminished?

I wanted to know if 7th, 9th, 11th and 13th chords can have both augmented and diminished forms. I'd appreciate your answers.
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0 votes
3 answers
127 views

What is the name of the chord with the notes G#, B, D#, and E?

I’m working on writing a chord sheet for Switchfoot’s song “Living Is Simple.” One of the chords during the second post-chorus has the notes G#, B, D#, and E. On the guitar, it’s fingered x-6-6-4-0-0 (...
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7 votes
4 answers
1k views

What is the "stack of thirds" in chord theory?

When talking about chords, chord symbols and harmony from a Western music point of view, something called a stack of thirds is often mentioned. What does it mean? Isn't it a chord voicing - maybe even,...
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1 vote
2 answers
107 views

E7add9+ Why is there a D? [duplicate]

E7add9+: The E major scale has the notes: E F# G# A B C# D# my teacher as well as tuxguitar suggest that the following guitar chord diagram: The second is B, the third is G#, the prime is of course E ...
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  • 113
4 votes
1 answer
219 views

Can you have a no3 chord with upper extensions?

C(no3) is just the notes C and G. C7(no3) is the notes C, G and Bb. Is it valid to have a C11(no3) chord? Or would this just be referred to as some kind of sus chord (like C9sus4 or something)? Which ...
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-2 votes
2 answers
117 views

What chord is 1 3 6 M7? i.e. C E A B [closed]

What chord is 1 3 6 M7? i.e. C E A B The simplest name for the notes is Amadd9. But it functions as a C chord, with a C bass. And it's not a suspension as such, in that the 6 doesn't resolve to the 5. ...
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14 votes
5 answers
1k views

Is this chord from Bach's C major Prelude G+ or Cm?

So I'm analyzing the harmony in Bach's C major Prelude from the Well Tempered Clavier, and it all goes smoothly until I reach this chord: Now, most editions I see of this Prelude don't have this ...
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3 votes
4 answers
159 views

How do you know what chords to use for a song/melodies you don't know?

I was given this exercise but unlike the other questions, this didn't have the title of the song in it. I thought it was just something I had to analyze and try to put chords that fit with the melody. ...
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  • 83
4 votes
2 answers
124 views

Notating a sus chord with thirteenth

How do you notate a chord like G F A C E without using slash notation? G13sus? G13sus4? If it’s along the lines of a G13, this leads to me to wonder why the chord G F A C is usually notated as G9sus4 ...
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  • 367
1 vote
1 answer
64 views

What is the roman numeral of the subtonic chord in a minor scale, VII or V/III?

What should we call a subtonic chord in minor scale, VII or the secondary function of III (V/III)? I think, especially in the case of subtonic seventh chord, V7/III- III progression makes more sense ...
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