Chords in Key

Discussion in 'Guitar Lessons' started by DW4LesPaul, Jan 20, 2016.

  1. JonR

    JonR Senior Member

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    Well, it's a quarter tone out - same as it is from A#.
    In theory, anyway....
    Have you checked it with a tuner?
    The math - as I mentioned - suggests it should be 49 cents flat of A# and 51 sharp of A. And my cheap tuner supports that (vaguely), identifying it as a very flat A# - almost off the scale towards A.
    Of course guitar strings are not perfect harmonic devices.... (google "inharmonicity"...;))

    BTW, it's 2 octaves above that fretted A# (between frets 17 and 18 on the top E string).
     
  2. JonR

    JonR Senior Member

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    Well, why are you learning to play guitar? To get better at playing scales? To become a music theory expert? Or to actually play some music?
    I'm guessing the latter.... ;)
    That's why you need to make your exercises musical. Don't do drills of any kind. Play the chord sequences of songs (in all positions and keys that you can work out). Play their melodies (learn to copy what the vocalist is doing).
    When you hit a part that's difficult, practise that until you've got it. (Don't go off and do some technical exercise.) Songs provide you with all the technical exercise you need, and also all the theoretical knowledge you need, if you pay enough attention.

    Play along with tracks and try and improvise (by ear). (Start simple obviously...)
    Well yes - but combine it with other things too.
    Eg, it's easy to work out any note on any string using the ABCDEFG formula (which I hope you know....)
    The more strategies you have (chord shapes, scale patterns, note names), the quicker the whole jigsaw comes together. Each method supports the others.
    And what playing actual songs teaches you is the common ways chords progress from one to another.
    But above all that, learning and playing songs is more fun than exercises. You are much less likely to get bored, which means you practice for longer - which means your fingers get better quicker - and your understanding increases quicker, as the patterns embed themselves.
     
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  3. D-POLAND

    D-POLAND Senior Member

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    as for me what I have noticed is when you finally get something down that you REALLY like hearing. it is far more easier to recall,relate to it and use it to move into other sounds that I like!! the word fun should be used in there somewhere.:thumb:

    playing scales is like, why am I doing this, it sounds soooo BORING !:hmm: NO FUN INVOLVED THERE!!
     
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  4. DW4LesPaul

    DW4LesPaul Senior Member

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    hehe already thought of that. Aside from not giving the guitar it's full bass notes, since it was made to use 13s, if you look at the higher strings, I think the 1-3, they are the same width as 13s. :)

    So you'd not gain anything except less bass going to 12s.

    Elixer has a 13 called the HD that has the same 1-3 strings as the light 12s, but the same 4-6 strings of the normal 13s. I might try that. However, tuning down also makes the strings--all of them--easier to fret.
     
  5. DW4LesPaul

    DW4LesPaul Senior Member

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    I just use the scale as a starting point, or jumping off point. I never just play them after I have learned them. I'm always trying to mix them up, like using the major pent over the minor, or mixing in a major shape with a pent shape.


    I guess I just need to do more of it. Thinking that abstractly is a lot of work though. So, I think I'll just start learning tons more songs. That's more fun.
     
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  6. DW4LesPaul

    DW4LesPaul Senior Member

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    OK so I will try them right now before bed.
    I'll keep in mind (1) This is a C major scale, (2) These are the triads in the key of C, (3) pay attention to the note names and locations.

    Anything else?

     
  7. DW4LesPaul

    DW4LesPaul Senior Member

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  8. JonR

    JonR Senior Member

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    I agree with Quill - why not fit 12s and tune to EADGBE?

    I can't imagine having 13s on my acoustic. I used to have 12s - for decades! - until I realised my hands were never going to get strong enough to bend them how I wanted, so I went to down to 11s. (Meanwhile I went up on electric from 9s to 10s - because my hands did get strong enough for 9s to feel too skinny.)
    Now I even have a extra light wound 3rd on my acoustic (Guild F30), to bend that one a bit more.
    The volume and tone suffer a little, but negligibly compared to the ease of playing.
    (In fact, with my K-mini PUs, I've had comments about how good the bass sound is on my guitar. I do realise Taylors are made for 13s. So what, I'd say, if it was mine ;) - it's my guitar I'll do what I like with it!)

    I do sometimes tune down, but only for alternative tunings (drop D, DADGAD, open D or open D). The 11s are fine with that. I've never seen any point (on electric either) to tune the whole thing a half-step down.
    (I did once tune a whole step down, to play a fingerstyle piece in Bb using C shapes, to suit our singer. That was a step too far for 11s really...)
     
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  9. DW4LesPaul

    DW4LesPaul Senior Member

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    Actually elixir offers a 13 string st with 12 width strings from the 1-3. I use to play with 11s until the guitar vendor told me, when I bought the Taylor, to just tune it down a half step, and that made the strings fee, if not like 11s, easy enough to bend a full step with no problem. He said that way I get both worlds, the loudness of 13s when I want or need them, and easy to bend at Eb. Also, the 13s are tougher strings and stand up to more bending abuse, especially near the nut. I ruined a couple sets of11s by bending the 4th string too aggressively at the 2nd fret.

    It's pretty easy for me to hear the "correct" tone as I can easily move up one fret to "hear"it, then I can move back down.

    Check out the chart here and you can see what I mean:
    Acoustic Phosphor Bronze - ELIXIR Strings
     
  10. JonR

    JonR Senior Member

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    Fair enough.
    I think by tuning down you take away a little of the power and tone of 13s in standard tuning. But then you do get a different kind of resonance in lower tunings, which is nice.
    Ah. ;) Personally, I find my fingers give out before my strings do... :(
     
  11. DW4LesPaul

    DW4LesPaul Senior Member

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    For sure you take off some of the 13s power, but you can always tune back up and there it is.

    One of these days I will move completely to electric I think. I'll practice acoustic to stay "in shape." but electric is where I want to be. I have an Epiphone Les Paul Standard Plus Top Pro that I have played, literally, about 5 times since I bought it in Jan 2014.
     
  12. DW4LesPaul

    DW4LesPaul Senior Member

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    I think I found a mistake for the G7 here:
    Chords In The Key Of G Major

    They list the

    • Scale intervals: 1 - 3 - 5 - b7
    • Notes in the chord: G - B - F - D
    The note pattern is wrong, although all of the notes are correct? Shouldn't it be G B D F ?
     
  13. JonR

    JonR Senior Member

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    Sorry I don't follow.
    I mean I can't see where on the link it gives that information.

    G7 is in the key of C major (not G major), but obviously you're right 1-3-5-b7 is G-B-D-F, not G-B-F-D.
     
  14. DW4LesPaul

    DW4LesPaul Senior Member

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    Jon, that was the wrong link. Try this one:
    G Dominant 7 Guitar Chord Diagrams


    G Dominant seventh chord attributes:

    Interval positions with respect to the G major scale, notes in the chord and name variations:

    • Scale intervals: 1 - 3 - 5 - b7
    • Notes in the chord: G - B - F - D
     
  15. JonR

    JonR Senior Member

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    Right, they made a mistake there, probably just a typo.

    One thing you might notice from those shapes, which they don't mention, is that one of them contains no 5th (D). I'll let you work out which one that is ;). (Still a very useful shape, because the 5th is the least important chord tone.)

    And there are a couple of other shapes (in fact two variants of one other shape) that they could have included. (Mind you, they're both based on the open position G7, so maybe they assumed you already know that one ;).)
     
  16. DW4LesPaul

    DW4LesPaul Senior Member

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    1st one on the left. But I used my reverse chord finder to. Did I cheat?

     
  17. JonR

    JonR Senior Member

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    Yes :D

    There's a couple of ways you could have worked it out from what you know already (or OUGHT to know!). Either one (especially the 2nd one) would have helped you learn the fretboard.

    Method 1. What familiar chord does that shape look like? C7, right?
    What notes are in a C7 chord (in that 4-string shape)?
    A normal C chord has the open 3rd string, right? You're losing that when you add the Bb on 3rd fret. ;)
    What note is that and which chord tone does it represent?

    Method 2. You know your open string notes EADGBE. Count up each string to find the notes in that G7 shape in that position. (This means you need to know the ABCDEFGA WH formula. You damn well ought to know that... ;))
     
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  18. DW4LesPaul

    DW4LesPaul Senior Member

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    I could have easily just looked at the notes, which they don't use--they use finger positions--and derived it from that, yes.

     
  19. JonR

    JonR Senior Member

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    Right. As with your query on the other thread, the learning process is not about information - it's about the process of playing itself.
    Information is good, but that's all it is. It will make you feel like you know stuff, which is nice, but it doesn't help you play. Even a complete and utter understanding of music theory won't help you play the guitar. Playing the guitar is how you learn to play the guitar.

    I can honestly say that all the years I've studied music theory has not improved my guitar playing one bit. Nor has it improved my songwriting. That's OK, because I never expected it to do that. I always accepted - without even questioning it - that playing and composing improves simply by doing more and more of it; while theory is a peripheral curiosity, an intellectual game. Nothing wrong with that, but it's as well not to confuse theoretical knowledge with musical skill.
     
  20. D-POLAND

    D-POLAND Senior Member

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    Someone, quick, have this statement engraved in stone for all posterity to see!:D
     

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