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Questions tagged [chord-theory]

For questions about the theory behind building and naming chords.

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Is it reasonable or even possible to have a minor, major seventh chord?

To play a major seventh, we play the seventh degree of the scale plus one half step. I've never really understood why it's called a major seventh, so maybe this can be cleared up for me here. My main ...
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how to identify the triad on the grand staff?

So basically, I know how to identify triad if there is only one clef, but have troubling identifying the triad when there is a grand staff...Could some you tell me how to do this and possibly give me ...
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The chord formula for the Major Chord is 1- 3 - 5. What do the numbers represent?

According to Wikipedia (paraphrased), a Major Chord has a Root, a Major Third, and a Perfect Fifth. One way, therefore, to arrive at the notes in the C Major Chord is to begin with the note name, C; ...
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Are Secondary Dominants related to Chord-Scales? [closed]

This is in relation to my last question about chord-scales. I was wondering if secondary dominants enable an application of chord-scale theory that would allow me to expand an existing chord ...
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Identifying this chord (Fb Db F?)

I'm practicing identifying chords from sight reading for the first time, here is what I have so far (feel free to correct any possible mistakes I might have made). I'm struggling with that last chord ...
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Did Jeff Beck “play the changes” on Goodbye Porkpie Hat?

I have read several different accounts of Charles Mingus' reaction to Jeff Beck's cover of Goodbye Porkpie Hat. One account says he liked it and sent Jeff a note saying this while another says he didn'...
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How can A minor key have a sharp chord in it?

Basically I am learning piano, so I was trying to play an Indian song 'Janam Janam' in the key of A minor. 2 chords are out of scale but they don't give a dissonant sound and melody. They are A sharp ...
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What makes some intervals consonant while others dissonant?

Why does an authentic cadence sound pleasing to the ear? What makes an interval "Consonant" or "Dissonant" and why are there only two categories for intervals?
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Analyzing Tschaikovsky's “Der Puppe Begräbnis”

00:56 starts the measure 9 the Cm/eb , G7/D ..( is the 7th measure from the picture but I called it measure 9 because in the actual song it's measure 9 ) what is this chord progression at measure 13 ...
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1answer
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How would one interpret this simple chord progression? and what scales to use for improvisation?

So, I come across this progression fairly often: e.g: G - A - C I was wondering if this progression has a name since its used often in pop songs. I interpret it as V - VImajor - I. Scales to use ...
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3answers
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Key signature and chord progressions

I was studying a blues song (Bessie's Blues) in all keys and I seem unable to understand something that seems quite basic. So, in the typical progression for a Bb organ we have C7-F7-C7-C7-F7-F7 etc. ...
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Complex chords: does the construction depend on scale degree? [duplicate]

I apologize for a newbie's question. Suppose we're in C major. We'd like to construct a Cmaj13 chord. For that, we take C Ionian and keep stacking thirds: C, E, G, B, D, F, A. At the same time, in C ...
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5answers
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Piano arpeggio voicing

I'm composing a piano piece and I'm trying to make the accompaniment. I made this arpeggio and I had this thought that the Bb/F might not be a Bb/F. Because it's starting from the Bb. But what if ...
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What chords count as “diatonic” in minor?

Do triads from all forms of minor count as "diatonic triads"? Triads from A Aeolian / Nat Minor am b˚ C dm em F G Triads from A Harmonic Minor am b˚ C+ dm E F g#˚ Triads from A Melodic Minor am ...
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Relative minor key change in chord progression

I'm writing a song in F Major key. I have a chord progression that goes Like 4/4 C7 - C#dim - Dm - Dm ( V7 - V#dim - Vi - Vi ) After this four measures, I wanted to change key to Dm for a moment. ...
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Is this chord in Für Elise an example of a diminished seventh chord in classical music?

We seem to think that some of those 'far-out' seventh chords are only the remit of jazz music but you can as I understand it add a fourth note to any of the diatonic chords in standard harmony to make ...
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How do I correctly borrow chords from one key to another?

So how does one decide to borrow chords? Let's say I am in the key of C Major. Can I borrow chords, say, from the G Major key? How does this work?
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Chord in the Bach d-minor prelude

I'm playing the prelude in Bach's d-minor suite. My teacher and I were wondering what the third to last chord is. We didn't find that A, E and D form a chord, but do they? Is the D maybe a "queuing" ...
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Analyzing Tschaikowsky's “Mein Mitterlein”

At the second bar where the notes are A,D,C is this D/A ? but isn't the third note (F#) something you can't omit ? Through out this piece there is a bunch of sudden inversion the makes a lot of gaps....
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5answers
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How can I know which major and minor chords go in a scale?

In the C major / A minor scale, I know which of the chords are minor and major (ie E is minor, F is major, etc) from experience. But when working in a different scale, is there an easy way to figure ...
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Notes in a lick that don't fit in the scale associated with the chord

Hello! Could someone please give me an explanation about why in the above lick they use G flat (yellow square) instead of G and an E (red circle) instead of E flat, as the Gm dictates? Thank you in ...
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Minor key and its chords [duplicate]

I am trying to learn the scales and its relative chords. I am confused with Minor scale. Lets take A minor key for an example. A minor key has following notes: A B C D E F G and its relative chords ...
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Analyzing Tschaikowsky's “Wintermorgen” 3

Starts at 00:29 At the second line's first measure. I can't figure out what chord it is.. and at after two measures there is a G7/F going to Bm I can't understand how does this work. In my ...
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Analyzing Tschaikowsky's “Wintermorgen 2”

At measure 2 from the [B] section. (starting at 00:18 ) I don't know what chord it is. The notes are B,D,G, E#. Is this G7 ? The same chord also appears on the 4th measure with a different ...
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When a major 6th (or an octave thereof) is in a chord, when is the chord symbol written as a 6th vs. a 13th?

I'm not asking about obvious cases like regular 6th chords or extended chords with 13ths. For example, I'm clear that C E G A is a C6 chord. I'm also clear that C E G B♭ D F A is a C13 chord. (And yes,...
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4answers
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Do “augmented-six” chords always have to be bVI?

If we're at a C key. Ab7 would be the "augmented-six" chord but doesn't and type 7 chords have the same interval as the bVI7 ? Why does bVI7 only has a particular name called "augmented six" ? Is ...
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1answer
520 views

use of 4/2 chord more compelling than root position?

I came across the following chord progression, which I really like: The iii4/2 chord adds a lot to the progression in comparison to the following: I'm sure you could wrap your head around these ...
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1answer
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Is this a V+ or III+6?

I see a weird chord between the iiø6/5 and the i. Is it a pun of V+ or an III+6?
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4answers
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Why is the complete circle of fifth progression more common in minor than major?

In relation to How common is the complete circle of fifths progression? which describes some examples of the complete circle of fifths progression (a consecutive I-IV-VII-III-VI-II-V-I progression), ...
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What technique was being used in composing this background music for a film?

At around six minutes and 40 seconds of this Youtube video, this gentleman talks about using minor and major thirds and how it was supposed to mimic the sound of a ...
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Why do we only build 7th chords on the supertonic and dominant of a major scale?

I am just cracking into a book on basic Harmony (Mark Sarnecki, 2nd edition), and the first section begins with a review of the triads built on each degree of a C major scale, as shown in this picture....
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How do you properly define diminished 9th, 11th and 13th chords?

I understand that a diminished 7th chord is defined by the intervals 1-b3-b5-bb7 and a half-diminished 7th chord is 1-b3-b5-b7, but how do you determine what intervals diminished (and half-diminished) ...
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7answers
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How do you voice extended chords?

If I have a Cmaj13 chord, it uses 7 notes. Basically all the notes of the scale. In a previous question, I was told that you rarely play all 7 notes for a 13th chord. So how do you know which ones to ...
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2answers
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Dm9 chord - the fifth and the seventh

I'm looking for the naming background behind the Dm9 chord (perhaps some others also but this one got me confused). Here is the example: This translates to: d2 - root (for the D in the chord) f2 - ...
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2answers
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Analyzing Tchaikovsky's “ Morgengebet ” Pt 2

At the 4th measure from the picture, Starting of the [B] section, there is a question mark. the notes are G, Eb, C, and F# . What is this chord? It also appears in the 3rd measure of the [B] section....
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Analyzing Tschaikowsky's “Wintermorgen”

At the beginning of the first measure there is a chord with the notes of Eb, G, C#, and G. What is this chord? I suppose that the song is in B minor and I can't find any chords even in Modal ...
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Relationship between extended diatonic chords and modes?

If we have C major, the diatonic chords are: C, Dm, Em, F, G, Am, Bdim, C If we turn each of these chords to diatonic 13th chord versions of themselves: Cmaj13, Dmin13, Emin13, Fmaj13, G13, Amin13, ...
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Analyzing Tschaikowsky's Morgengebet

if you see at the 5th measure from the photo, there is a question mark. How did that F#7/A# came out all of a sudden ? Was it possible because at the measure before there is a bass movement moving ...
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Alternative theories of harmony

Do you know of any alternative (to functional) descriptive theories of harmony or attempts at creating them? By that I mean attempts to explain both functional and non-functional harmonies in a ...
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What is the proper chord interpretation for the intro to Stairway to Heaven?

The opening sequence in Stairway to Heaven is an A minor chord followed by something strange followed by C/G, D/F#, and Fmaj7. I've seen the second chord notated as Am/G#, G#aug, and even Am/maj7/add2....
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Why is the third triad dominant?

I'm working through "Guide to the Practical Study of Harmony" by Tchaikovsky and I had a question about this section on triads (he's working with a C Major scale): The whole mass of major and minor ...
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3answers
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How to self-teach music theory on guitar? [closed]

So I've tried a lot of resources out there( the free ones) on the internet, from YouTube to PDFs. But my progress is not much. The basic stuff like major scale is clear to me only in theory, but I ...
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What chord does the following figured bass represent in this progression?

I am working through a figured bass exercise in the "Ninth, Eleventh and Thirteenth Chords" chapter of Piston's Harmony. The first bar of the figured bass is given as: What is the chord represented ...
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Figured bass 52?

This is from the ABRSM Grade 8 figured basses. What does the 5/2 mean? I have not come across this before.
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Paul Hindemith & Omitted Fifths

Three note voicings of seventh chords where the perfect fifth above the root has been omitted are common in jazz piano because the ear does a good job interpreting the function of the chord with or ...
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C chord - Fret Dependency

Traditionally, the C chord is shown on a ukuele as the first string, third fret. However, the third string played open is also a C. Could this be thought of as C just being played in a different ...
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4answers
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2-5-1 Jazz progression and modes

I am classically trained and just started looking into jazz theory. I understand that the 2-5-1 progression is a good place to start. My basic understanding is to play the above progression with ...
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2answers
77 views

Is there any formula to apply extended chords? [closed]

Is there any formula to apply extended chords just like triad chord (IM-IIm-IIIm-IVM...like this). Thanks..
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2answers
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What is this chord progression called?

During the intro (0:00 ~ 0:04), The chord progression is: I maj7 -> IV maj7 -> b VII maj7-> b III maj7 -> b VI maj7 -> II7-> b II maj7 -> V What is this called? Is this an example of an extended "II-...
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Why do 7 chords use minor 7th while 6 chords use major 6ths?

If you play the chord C7, you would play the root, major third, fifth, and minor seventh (C - E - G - B♭), but if you play C6, you play the root, major third, fifth, and major sixth (C - E - G - ...