This lesson expands on the last lesson, Triad Arpeggio Workout. By using the same shapes that were introduced, this lesson takes it further by leading you through a major scale “Chord Family” of Arpeggios.
You may know or have heard about the number system as it pertains to chords. This is a very convenient way to think about chord progressions and to communicate them to others.
I’ll give a brief review here
- The major scale has 7 notes. This means that there are 7 notes that could be the root note for a chord, if you stay within the major scale.
- The normal way of deriving chords is by beginning at the first note (1) and moving up in “3rds”. Moving in 3rds is moving from the 1st to 3rd note, 2nd to 4th note and so on.
- By continuing that process, taking 3 notes at a time (1, 3, 5 – 2, 4, 6, etc.) you get the triads that go along with the scale.
- In the major scale, those triads end up being 3 different types of chords. Major, Minor & Diminished.
When you move up or down the scale using chords or arpeggios you are using the “chord family”. This is also called the “diatonic chords”.
The Major Scale Chord Family
While practicing the exercises from this lesson I suggest thinking in two ways. Pay attention to both the letter names of the chords in the chord family, but also the number. The number gives you an indication of it’s position in the scale, and this is useful. In improvisation over complex patterns it is VERY important to understand the chord in relation to it’s scale of origin.