1. Please take 30 seconds to register your free account to remove most ads, post topics, make friends, earn reward points at our store, and more!  
    TalkBass.com has been uniting the low end since 1998.  Join us! :)


Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by EdgarHons, Nov 28, 2000.

  1. EdgarHons


    Oct 14, 2000
    Ok, being a musical moron, I'm a little lost as to what the parts of a chord or something are...

    You know, the thing with the root, 1st, 7th etc.? If someone could give me a brief (Or detailed if you have time) synopsis of the relation between these 1st, 7ths, etc and what I'm playing it would be helpful. I dunno if you understand my question, but that's my problem too...

    Any answers appreciated, thanks!
  2. Christopher


    Apr 28, 2000
    New York, NY
    The numbers usually refer to the intervals between notes.

    An interval is simply the pitch relationship between any two or more notes. Each interval has a characteristic sound which you should learn (eventually) to identify by ear. This is easiest done by associating the interval with the opening notes of a familiar song. For example, the Star Trek theme (the Alexander Courage version) begins with two notes a minor sixth apart. The two notes which comprise much of the Jaws theme are a minor second apart. After some practice, you will be able to identify and hear intervals in your mind by picturing the notes on the fretboard.

    If you're in HS or college, I'd highly recommend some music theory. A MENC qualified teacher could explain intervals much better than I could.
  3. MJB


    Mar 17, 2000
    Look at a C major scale.

    C D E F G A B C

    C is the root or 1st, F is the 4th, G the fifth, etc.

    The other major scales will have sharps or flats in them but this is the general concept.
  4. To briefly sneak an explanation while my boss isn't looking, bassically, chords are built in intervals of 3rds. That means every other note in the major scale for a major chord.

    A CMaj chord consists of C (root),E (3rd), and G (5th or 3rd above E).

    CMaj 7 will consist of root, 3rd, 5th, and 7th. The 7th would be a third above the fifth. In other words, the 7th would be a B (or a third above G or the 5th.)

    For minor chords, the 3rd is always flatted. In other words, in the key of C, the minor third would be E-flat. THe fifth is still the same (G). The seventh for the Cmin7 would be B-flat. (C-min is C,E-flat,G) (C-min7 is C,E-flat,G,B-flat)

    I hope this helps a little. This is basic chord theory.

Share This Page