Mike Robinson Land


How chords are made…Stacking 3rd’s

Posted in Music Theory by mikerobinsonland on December 6, 2009
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Want to know how chords are made? Well then this lesson on stacking 3rds might answer your questions.

Basic chords are called Triads.  A major triad is created when you take the Root the 3rd and the 5th intervals of a scale.

So to create a C major Triad we must first look at the C major scale.

C Major scale= C D E F G A B

We then take the ROOT which is a C

Next we take the 3rd, which is the 3rd note of the scale, in this case an E.

Finally we take the 5th note of the scale, which is a G

Play all three notes at the same time and you get a C major Triad.

Now lets do a G major triad. We will use the G major scale this time.

G Major scale= G A B C D E F#

We then take the ROOT which is a G

Next we take the 3rd, which is the 3rd note of the scale, in this case an B.

Finally we take the 5th note of the scale, which is a D

Play all three notes at the same time and you get a G major Triad.

Simple…


But how are minor chords formed? Well that is just as simple.

With a major triad we used the Root, the 3rd and the 5th. The only difference with a minor triad is, we use a flat 3rd.

So you just take your 3rd note and drop it by a half step.

So our C major triad C,E,G                                  becomes C,Eb,G

A G major triad G,B,D                                           becomes G, Bb,D

That wasnt so hard was it?

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