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Chord Types As Shapes

Dave Ratcliffe (289) · [archive]
Style: Theory/Reference · Level: Intermediate · Tempo: 70
Pages: 1 2 3

Chord Types as Shapes
While shapes are felt by many tutors to be the best way of learning chords, let's check out Syntax.

'Syntax' is the name given to the formula of chords.
Some lead sheets--notably Motown--publish sheets entirely in Tonic Degrees so you can play in any key--great for pros, and often cutting out amateurs.
This means it pays to find out the conventions,
Syntax, then, is the Formula of Chords given in Tonic Degrees. Here they are:

Major (in C)
CDEFGABC
1 2345 671

Using these Tonic Degrees, let's see some Chord Formulae

Chord formChord Syntax

Major---->1--3--5
minor---->1--b3--5
dim------>1--b3--b5
Aug------>1--3--#5
Major 7->1--3--5--7
minor 7->1--b3--5--b7
Dom 7-->1--3--5--b7
1/2 Dim 71--b3--b5--b7
Dim 7--->1--b3--b5--bb7
Aug 7--->1--3--#5--b7
Sus 4---->1--4--5--b7
Sus 2---->(1)--2--5--b7
M/m 7--->1--b3--5--7


Next, let's look at the Scale of C , its Chord Tones, and the Syntax...

Cmaj7CEGB
Dm7 DFAC
Em7 EGBD
Fmaj7FACE
G7 >GBDF
Am7 AC;EG
Bm7b5BDFA