Tag Archives: Harmony

Numbers As Intervals In Music

A lot of times, when referring to an interval, people will refer to it as a Number instead of the actual note.

The example is that A B C# D E F# can be written as 1 2 3 4 5 6. This is effective because it easily allows you to change keys and transpose. 1 2 3 4 5 6 in the key of D would be D E F# G A B. So I transcribe the notes and show you how its’ done with this post. Check it out!

The program I’m using is called Sibelius – check out Sibelius 6

Half Diminished Chords Explained!

Notice the double Flat 7th interval – this is the only difference between a Diminished and a Half Diminished Chord.

What are Half Diminished Chords?

Half Diminished Chord are built on this harmony: R b3, b5, b7. So in the key of C major the notes would be: C Eb Gb Bb

What are Diminished Chords?

Diminished Chords are built on this harmony: R b3, b5, bb7. So in the key of C major the notes would be: C Eb Gb Bbb

When would I use Diminished and Half Diminished Chords?

Music (and life) is a series of Tension and Release. So to build tension in music is known as Dissonance. Diminished and Half Diminished chords sound very ‘Rough’, and as a result create tension, movement, and might just be the sound you are looking for.

Augmented And Diminished Chords!

Augmented and Diminished Chords allow you to create tension in your music. Rather than simply using Major and Minor triads, you can flatten the third, or fifth intervals, and create ‘movement ‘ in your chords. Tension leads to release, and that’s how 7th Chords work, too!

So watch this below and learn about these chords – then try and use them in your songs and see if and where they fit.

Inversions Explained!

Inversions in music are the idea of ‘flipping’ two notes around. So in stead of the intervals from C to G (which is 5 notes away – C D E F G) you simply invert that creating an interval from G to C (which is 4 notes away G A B C)

Inversions follow the concept of “Rule of 9

Percussive Barre Chords (1 Of 3)

What’s great about the guitar is that you can generate so many amazing sounds and emotions from it. One of those techniques is using your pick hand to create a Percussive effect. Creating a percussive effect sounds great over Barre chords, although they are difficult to play at first. But when mastered, they create a nice, full sound. There are two types – Full Barre Chords, and Partial Barre Chords.

What’s the Difference between Full Bar Chords and Partial Barre Chords?

The difference is determined by your Index finger (AKA ‘first’ finger) on guitar.

A full barre chord is when your finger lays down every string on guitar, from Low E to High E. A partial barre chord is when you don’t lay down all six strings. So, if you used your first finger (index finger) to play five strings (A D G B E), then it would still be considered a Partial Bar Chord.

Understand that the piano can NOT play barre chords. The Piano can’t even create any percussion sounds – unless you used the ‘actual’ piano as a drum or percussion instrument, by literally hitting your hand against its’ side, etc. There are people like John Cage who used Prepared Piano in order to stretch the capabilities of the instrument.

Many styles of music such as Funk, Blues, and Rock use percussive barre chords in their compositions!

Class 18: Double Stops

What are Double Stops?

Double Stops are playing two notes together in harmony to the song. Steve Vai, Al Di Meola, and even Slash of Guns and Roses frequently use double stops in their solos, and song writing. John Petrucci even uses Double Stops when practicing his alternate picking. It helps to know How to Harmonize a Song.

How To Harmonize A Song!

To understand Harmony, you must first understand Intervals. After you write the melody, use intervals (usually within the key signature) to give it a hip feel. Harmony can be in intervals of fifths, fourths, sevenths, outside the key, inside, etc. The thing is – anything goes!

What are Intervals?

Intervals are the distances between two notes. So the distance from C to A is an interval of a sixth – because A is 6 notes away from C (C-D-E-F-G-A). So when Harmonizing a song, if the notes are C-F-A, then you can still keep those notes, but just add to them by simply building double stops, etc. off of them. So to add the notes E-A-C on top of C-F-A would sound neat – and still keep the melody!

The most well known Harmonized songs are the beginning of Van Morrison’s “Brown Eyed Girl“, and the Bridge to Metallica’s “Wherever I May Roam“.

Class #17 A And E Chords Explained!

This is from my week 17 of my Revision 3 show!

How to play Guitar A and E chords!

Well I did an earlier episode about beginner chords C, F, and G a few months ago. Since you have them down (right?!) then we can build on them!

So to learn these chords it may help to learn how to read chord diagrams. So we know chords consist of R-3-5 notes, so in A major the notes are A C# E. Watch the video above for more!

Seventh Chords On Guitar Explained!

Seventh Chords in music are important because they add a new level of harmony to your work. This new harmonic element allows you to play more styles of music, sounds, and techniques.

We all know a C major chord consists of the notes C-E-G. But with a C major 7 chord the notes are now C-E-G-B. Notice how the ‘B’ was added – this is because the B is the Seventh note of the C major scale! Alot of Jazz, Blues and more consists of these chords. Now you can enter the world of diminished, half-diminished, sevenths, minor sevenths, major sevenths, and much more!

To learn more on Seventh chords FAQ’s simply go here!

Creating Major And Minor Chords

This Post written by James Dellay. To learn more about him follow him on Twitter!

Creating Major Chords

Creating Major Chords using the R/3/5 idea.Root/3rd/5th is the algorithm to create Major chords,The Root is the key you are playing in, in our case A Major, the 3rd is the 3rd alphabetic character in your key, and the 5th is 5th alphabetic character in our key.

In this case we have A B C# D E F# G#

R 3 5

So if we gather our R/3/5 which is (A C# E) we now make up our A Major Chord.

Lets take a look at a diagram showing you how this is done.

Creating Minor Chords

Creating Minor Chords using the R/b3/5 idea.

Root/b3/5 – is the algorithm to create Major chords, in our case A Major, the flat 3rd is the 3rd alphabetic character in your key flat by a half step (i.e. Ab = G# or Gb = F#), and the 5th is 5th alphabetic character in our key.

In this case we have A B C# D E F# G#

R b3 5

So if we gather our R/b3/5 which is (A C E) we now make up our A Minor Chord.

Lets take a look at a diagram showing you how this is done.

I hope that my diagrams and lessons have helped YOU, that striving musician, to learn the great tools available in theory to help you understand music a little better.

In closing words, keep your head up, never give up, aspire to be great, and do BIG things.


-James Dellay

Weekly Revision 3 Lesson 7: ‘Chords C F And G’

This lesson is from my Revision3 Show titled ‘Your Weekly Music Lesson with Walt‘. This week we learned ‘Chords CFG’. First, before you learn these chords it may help to learn The Notes and also the other chords ADE

The reason why I broke the chords into two separate videos spread over 4 weeks is because I always say that it takes about one week per chord. So I figured I’d give you some time to practice, because practice is important, and everyone gets it over time.

Last week we learned ‘How Microphones Work‘, and tomorrow we’re going to learn ‘How Rockband and GuitarHero work’.