Theory Lesson: *Venturing beyond Major and Minor Triads - mo - Jemsite
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-13-2001, 09:16 PM Thread Starter
 
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Theory Lesson: *Venturing beyond Major and Minor Triads - mo

Any guitarist who's attempted to play music by an artist like Steve Vai or Joe Satriani has ineviatably run into a chord like this: *Eb13#11 or a Csus2

This introduces the topic of the lesson today. *Compound intervals and sus chords.

Compound Intervals:

Remember back to the earlier lessons, we covered basic intervals. *Hopefully you're relatively educated on them by now. *If not, go back and review and this will make a lot more sense. *If you remember, the intervals look like this:
Root C
Minor 2: *Db
Major 2: *D
Minor 3: *Eb
Major 3: *E
Diminished 4: Fb (note that this is the same note as a Major 3rd, just spelled harmonically correct)
Perfect 4: *F
Augmented 4/Dimished 5 aka Tritone: *F#/Gb
Perfect 5: *G
Augmented 5/Minor 6: G#/Ab
Major 6: *A
Minor 7: *Bb
Major 7: *B
Octave: *C


If we were to continue numbering, the Octave interval would be an 8th, a major second above the octave would be a Major 9th, and so on. *A simple way to figure these, is to subtrack 7 from the compound interval.

Try it:

D9
9 - 7 = 2
An octave and a second above D is E

so the chord would be spelled as so,
[font=courier]
e-12
B-10
G-11
D-12
A---
E---
[/font]

All compound intervals can be found this way.

Also, another chord you may have come across, is something like Csus4. *In this case, a triad is created without the third. *when you read the sus4, you're being instructed to substitute a 4th for your 3rd. *

A C major chord is spelled CEG, a Csus4 would be C F G

[font=courier]
e--
B--
G-0
D-3
A-3
E--
[/font]
notice the different color of the chord.

Why would we want to use these kinds of chords?

Chords containing compound intervals are often used in jazz to point the way toward a specific tonality. *Also, the compound intervals can be used to ornament and reinforce another recurrent theme in music. *Jimi Hendrix was known for using 9 chords in his music. *They make a transition to 2 chord easier, and they add a different feel to the music.

Sus chords are helpful if you're hoping to shape tonality while avoiding a major or minor distinction. *Notice that if I play a Csus4 chord, I've not committed to either C Major or Minor. *This sort of a voicing is helpful working in modes where a Major or Minor chord might not work well in a melody. *Good luck.
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-14-2001, 01:48 PM
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
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Theory Lesson: *Venturing beyond Major and Minor Triads

Thanx jem7vwh, your lessons are always interesting! *
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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-14-2001, 02:07 PM Thread Starter
 
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Theory Lesson: *Venturing beyond Major and Minor Triads

hope it helps
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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-14-2001, 11:51 PM
 
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Theory Lesson: *Venturing beyond Major and Minor Triads

jem7, dude, your lessons make so much sense...

i'm studying this kinda stuff in a first-year musicianship course at york university (gonna make music my major next year) but your guitar-oriented explanations really make it easy to transpose the ideas to guitar

i already knew all this stuff, but your explanation makes me go "ohhhhh, so THAT's how it works on guitar!"

nice work dude :thumbsup:

btw you should get all your lessons together and make a book heheheh, you're a great player and a great teacher, and you know your stuff.

thanks :biggrin:
-Pryde
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-14-2001, 11:56 PM Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Dec 2000
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Theory Lesson: *Venturing beyond Major and Minor Triads

wow, thanks for all the compliments. *I'm actually planning to put all the lessons together into book form, but not for financial gain. *I figure once I get about 100 lessons posted, I'll print them all into book form and offer them at cost to any forum members who want them. *I also teach guitar lessons here in Texas, and I'll use the book with my students. *Hopefully all this lesson writing is helping my playing too
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-17-2001, 09:34 PM
 
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Theory Lesson: *Venturing beyond Major and Minor Triads

i second these complements! *your lessons are cool please keep them coming
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