Join Julian Velard for an in-depth discussion in this video Triads: The basics of chords, part of Music Theory for Songwriters: The Fundamentals.
- Chords are the building blocks of songs.…They set the structure for where…the melody of a song can go.…Chords can consist of two or more notes, but typically…they are made of at least three notes, and often more.…A triad is three-note chord arranged in intervals of thirds.…Creating a triad can be easily done…by stacking every other note within a scale.…Constructing triads this way teaches us…one of the most important concepts in harmony:…all chords are built from scales.…Since the only scale we've examined thus far…is the major scale, let's look at the triads we can create…by using the notes of just the major scale.…
And for simplicity's sake,…I'll use the key of C major to demonstrate.…Let's start with C.…We'll skip D, and then play E.…And skip F, and play G.…These three notes, C, E, G, played simultaneously,…create a major triad.…All triads are named for their root.…And like intervals, their quality.…
The root of a triad is the note on which it's built.…We call the notes, C, E, G,…a C major triad.…As opposed to an E major, or G major triad.…
Professional musician Julian Velard starts the course with the building blocks of harmony: notes, scales, intervals, chords, inversions, and basic chord progressions. He then goes into voice leading—showing how to move from one chord to another by changing just one or two notes—and reviews common song forms, from the familiar verse/chorus/verse of pop to the simple verse of the blues. At the end of each chapter, Julian explains the songwriting techniques shown in the chapter within the context of his own original commercially released songs.
- Understanding scales, intervals, and keys
- Triads or three-note chords
- Triad inversions
- Common major-scale chord progressions and cadences
- Voice leading
- Song form elements such as verse, chorus, bridge, hook, and more
- Using common song forms in songwriting
Skill Level Beginner
1. The Building Blocks of Harmony
2. Triads and Chord Progressions
3. Chord Progressions and Voice Leading
4. Song Forms
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