How to build different type of chords on guitar?
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How to build different type of chords on guitar?

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Learn to build different type of chords on guitar - Major, Minor, Augmented, Suspended, Diminished and Dominant.

Learn to build different type of chords on guitar - Major, Minor, Augmented, Suspended, Diminished and Dominant.

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  • 1. Building different types of major chords on guitarIn this lesson you are going to learn how to builddifferent types of Major Chords, starting with the basicMajor Chord to a Major 9th Chord.For the purpose of explanation I am using the firstMajor Scale in western music, everyone’s favorite CMajor Scale.Note: Please refer back to this scale diagram while learning each chordMajor ChordMajor chord is built by combining the Root (1st) + 3rd + 5thdegrees or notes of the Major Scale, In this case – the CMajor Scale.So we get the C Major Chord notes as C-E-G
  • 2. The interval from C to E is 2 Whole Tones or Whole Steps andit is known as a Major Third. And the interval from E to G is 1Whole Tone and a Half Tone, which is known as a MinorThird.When we combine the Major Third and Minor Third we get aMajor Triad or a Major Chord.The formula for building a Major Chord is 1-3-5 or MajorThird + Minor Third.Major Chord can be denoted as C Major or C Maj Or just C.Click the link to learn 12 Different Chord Voicings for C MajorChord.Major 6th ChordThe Major 6th Chord is built by adding the 6th degree or noteof the Major Scale to the Major Triad or the Major Chord.In C Major Scale, we just need to add the 6th note (A) alongwith C-E-G and we get the C Major 6th Chord as C-E-G-A
  • 3. So the formula for building a Major 6th Chord is 1-3-5-6Major 6th Chord can be denoted as C6, CM6, or CMaj6Click the link to learn 12 different chord voicings for C Major6th ChordMajor 7th ChordThe Major 7th Chord is built by adding the 7th degree or noteof the Major Scale to the Major Triad or the Major Chord.In C Major Scale, we just need to add the 7th note (B) alongwith C-E-G and we get the C Major 7th Chord as C-E-G-BSo the formula for building a Major 7th Chord is 1-3-5-7
  • 4. Major 7th Chord can be denoted as C7, CM7, or CMaj7Click the link to learn 12 different chord voicings for C Major7th ChordMajor 9th ChordThe Major 9th Chord is built by adding the 9th degree or noteof the Major Scale to the Major 7th Chord.In C Major Scale, we just need to add the 9th note (D) alongwith C-E-G-B, which is the C Maj 7 chord and we get the CMajor 9th Chord as C-E-G-B-DSo the formula for building a Major 9th Chord is 1-3-5-7-9The Major 9th Chord can be denoted as C9, CM9, or CMaj9Click the link to learn 12 different chord voicings for C Major9th Chord
  • 5. Building different types of minor chords onguitarIn this lesson you will learn how to build different types ofMinor Chords, starting with the basic Minor Chord to a Minor9th Chord.I am using the C Major Scale here also for explaining theMinor Chords.Minor ChordMinor chord is built by combining the Root (1st) + Flattened3rd (denoted as ‘b’ after the note) + 5th degrees or notes ofthe Major Scale, In this case – the C Major Scale.Note: Flattening a note means lowering it a half step or ahalf tone.
  • 6. So we get the C Minor Chord notes as C-Eb- GThe interval from C to Eb is 1 ½ Tones and is known as aMinor Third. And the interval from Eb to G is 2 Whole Tones,which is known as a Major Third.When we combine the Minor Third and Major Third together,we get a Minor Triad or a Minor Chord.Hence, the formula for building a Minor Chord is 1-b3-5 orstacking together a Minor Third + Major Third, which isexactly the opposite of a Major Chord formula where wecombine a Major Third and Minor Third to build a MajorChord.Minor Chord can be denoted as C minor or C min Or CmMinor 6th ChordThe Minor 6th Chord is built by adding the 6th degree or noteof the Major Scale to the Minor Triad or the Minor Chord.In the case of C Major Scale, we just need to add the 6th note(A) along with C-Eb-G (minor triad or minor chord) to buildthe C Minor 6th Chord as C-Eb-G-A
  • 7. So we derived the formula for building a Major 6th Chord as1-b3-5-6Minor 6th Chord can be denoted as Cm6, Cmin6, or C minor 6Minor 7th ChordThe Minor 7th Chord is built by adding the Flattened 7thdegree or note of the Major Scale to the Minor Triad or theMinor Chord.In C Major Scale, we just need to add the Flattened 7th note(Bb) to C-Eb-G and we get the C Minor 7th Chord as C-Eb-G-BbSo the formula for building a Minor 7th Chord is 1-b3-5-b7Minor 7th Chord can be denoted as Cmin7, C minor 7, or Cm7Minor 9th Chord
  • 8. The Minor 9th Chord is built by adding the 9th degree or noteof the Major Scale to the Minor 7th Chord.In C Major Scale, we just need to add the 9th note (D) alongwith C-Eb-G-Bb, which is the C min 7 chord and we get the Cminor 9th Chord as C-Eb-G-Bb-DSo the formula for building a Minor 9th Chord is 1-b3-5-b7-9The Minor 9th Chord can be denoted as Cmin9, Cm9, or CMinor 9Building different types of dominant chords onguitarIn the last 2 lessons we learned how to derive different typesof major chords and minor chords. I am sure those lessonswere useful enough in enhancing your knowledge on guitarchords.In this lesson I am sharing my knowledge on derivingdifferent types of dominant chords – Dominant 7th, 9th, 11thand 13th and playing them on guitar. Just like the other twochord types (major and minor chords) that we learned in theprevious 2 lessons, Dominant chords are also derived from aMajor Scale.
  • 9. For the purpose of explanation I am using the same old CMajor Scale here too.Dominant 7th ChordDominant 7th chord is very similar to a Major 7th chord andit shares almost the same intervals or notes of a Major 7thchord, except that the 7th degree is lowered a half step(flattened). In C Major Scale that would be a B flat.
  • 10. The formula for building a Dominant 7th Chord is 1-3-5-b7;this is nothing but a Major Triad (1-3-5) combined with aflattened 7th degree.Applying this chord formula on the C Major Scale gives us theC Dominant 7th Chord notes as C-E-G-Bb.Dominant 7th chord can be denoted in multiple ways, for e.g.CDom7, C7, C Dominant Seventh or C Dominant 7th.Dominant 9th ChordIf you know how to derive a Dominant 7th chord, building adominant 9th chord is super easy. All you need to do is addthe 9th degree of the major scale to it. In C Major Scale thatwould be the note D.Formula for building a Dominant 9th chord is 1-3-5-b7-9.Applying it on the C Major Scale yields a C Dominant 9thChord as C-E-G-Bb-DDominant 9th Chord is denoted in multiple ways for e.g.CDom9, C9, C Dominant 9th, C Dominant Ninth.Dominant 11th Chord
  • 11. Dominant 11th Chords can be easily built by adding the 11thdegree of the major scale to the Dominant 9th chord. In caseof C Major Scale, the 11th degree is the note F.Formula for building Dominant 11th chord is 1-3-5-b7-9-11.Note: Since there are more than 5 notes for this chord, it ispractically difficult to include all of them in the chord voicingusing our fingers on the fret board, so omitting one or twonotes is OK. The same applies to the Dominant 13th chordalso.By applying this chord formula on C Major Scale yields a CDominant 11th chord as C-E-G-Bb-D-FDominant 11th chord can be denoted as C11, Cdom11, CDominant Eleventh or C Dominant 11thDominant 13th ChordThis chord is also pretty easy to build! All you need to do isjust add the 13th degree of the major scale to a Dominant11th chord, and you get a Dominant 13th chord. In case of CMajor Scale the 13th degree is the note A.
  • 12. The Dominant 13th chord formula is 1-3-5-b7-9-11-13By applying this formula on the C Major Scale, we get the CDominant 13th chord as C-E-G-Bb-D-F-A.Dominant 13th chord can also be denoted in different ways,for e.g. C13, Cdom13, C Dominant Thirteenth or C Dominant13th.Building different types of diminished chords onguitarIn the last 3 lessons we checked out different types of majorchords, minor chords and dominant chords. Here you willlearn Diminished chords and how to build 3 different types ofdiminished chords – Diminished, Diminished 7th and HalfDiminished Chords on guitar.The scale remains the same for explanation, yes, everyone’sfavorite – the C Major Scale!
  • 13. Diminished ChordA Diminished chord is quite similar to a Minor Triad (1-b3-5)but differs with a flattened 5th degree or also, it can be seenas a Major Triad with flattened 3rd and 5th degrees.The formula for building a Diminished Chord is 1-b3-b5.By applying this formula on the C Major Scale, we can derivea C Diminished Chord notes as C-Eb-GbA Diminished Chord can be denoted as Cdim or C DiminishedDiminished Seventh Chord
  • 14. Adding a double flattened 7th degree from the major scale tothe Diminished Chord Triad yields a Diminished 7th Chord ora Fully Diminished 7th Chord.Note: Double flattening just means that you lower a note by 2semitones (2 frets) or a whole tone.The formula for building a Diminished Seventh chord is 1-b3-b5-bb7Applying this formula on the C Major Scale gives us a CDiminished 7th Chord as C-Eb-Gb-A(Lowering the B note twice or a whole tone gives us the Anote).Diminished 7th chord can be represented as Cdim7 or CDiminished 7Half Diminished ChordUnlike the fully diminished chord, a Half Diminished Chordhas the 7th degree lowered just ONCE. That’s the onlydifference between a fully and Half Diminished Chords! But ahalf diminished chord is also the same as a Minor 7th Chordwith a Flattened 5. So the half diminished chord is morepopularly known as m7b5 than its real name.
  • 15. The formula for building a half diminished chord is 1-b3-b5-b7.By applying this formula on the C Major Scale we get the CHalf Diminished or Cmin7b5 chord as C-Eb-Gb-Bb.A half diminished chord is represented as Cm7b5 or Cmin7b5or C Half Diminished.I hope this lesson could unravel the mystery behind thediminished chords to a moderate extend. In the next lessonwe will check out the Augmented and Suspended Chords.Building an augmented chord and different typesof suspended chords on guitarIn the last 4 lessons we learned how to derive major chords,minor chords, dominant chords and diminished chords onguitar. In this lesson we will learn how to derive anAugmented chord and 2 types of Suspended chords.These scales can be derived from a Major Scale. And yetagain, the Major Scale I am using for explanation is the sameold C Major Scale!
  • 16. Augmented ChordAn Augmented Chord is quite similar to a Major Chordwith the only difference of a raised 5th degree in thescale interval (1-3-5#), where as a Major Chord Triadinterval is 1-3-5. An augmented Chord creates a tensedtone and won’t sound that good to our ears and alwaystend to resolve to a much sweet sounding Major orMinor Chord.And the formula for building an Augmented Chord is 1-3-5#Applying this formula on the C Major Scale gives us a CAugmented Chord as C – E – G#
  • 17. An Augmented chord is denoted as C aug or CAugmented.Suspended ChordsSuspended or Sus Chords have an unconventional scaleintervals, where a minor 3rd (1-3b) or a major 3rd (1-3) isreplaced with a major 2nd (1-2) or a perfect 4th (1-4). Sincethere is an absence of a minor 3rd or a major 3rd in thischord, it creates a tensed sound just like an Augmentedchord, but at the same time the semi-tone (or minor 2nd)interval between 1st and 2nd or 4th and 5th degree of notesgives rise to a dissonant tone – not so soothing for our ears.There are mainly 2 types of Suspended Chords 1. Suspended 2nd 2. Suspended 4thSuspended 2nd ChordIn a Suspended 2nd Chord, the Major or Minor Third intervalis replaced with a Major Second note.Formula for building a Suspended 2nd Chord is 1-2-5
  • 18. By applying this formula on the C Major Scale, we get a CSuspended 2nd or C Sus 2 chord as C-D-GSuspended 4th ChordIn a Suspended 4th Chord, the Major or Minor Third intervalis replaced with a Perfect 4th note.Formula for building a Suspended 4th Chord is 1-4-5By applying this formula on the C Major Scale, we get a CSuspended 4th or C Sus 4 chord as C-F-GI hope you found these lessons useful to know how to builddifferent type of Chords on guitar - clearly.======================
  • 19. For more interesting lessons, and downloading your guitar courseeBooks, you can check out my guitar blog @http://www.onlineguitarschools.com/guitarblogAnd please do share your suggestions and feedback as a commentor write to me at deepakeapen@yahoo.com