This is a fun, (well, fun for a specific kind of person), exercise which will help familiarise you with chords and scales and how some of the more complex chords can be constructed. Essentially we’re adding a Common Tone to a sequence of chords and seeing how that note affects each chord.
Changing chords is pretty hard, and is one of the things that puts people off of playing guitar past their first few lessons. It’s true that you’ve got to put the time in, but there is something we can do to make things easier.
Here, have a tab.
Today I’d like to introduce you to my favourite chord of all time. Behold:
In my mind this chord could actually be any one of 3, depending on which note you decide to be the root:
- If the deepest pitch is the root then the middle note is it’s 5th, and the higher note is a 2. That makes the chord a Sus2.
- If the middle note is the root, that makes the deeper note a 4th; while the higher note is a 5th. So this chord is an Inverted Sus4.
- If the highest note is the root, then the middle pitch is a 4th, while the lowest pitch is a m7…. Root, 4th, m7th…. I don’t think there’s a name for that chord to be honest…
EDIT: Having spoken with a musical colleague we came to the conclusion that, you could refer to this chord as Inverted Stacked Fourths. Maybe read-up on Quartal Harmony for more info.
Files & Downloads
- Guitar tab for the example song’s rhythm guitar: Stacked 5ths – Guitar Tab
Further info on basic chord theory. We talk about chord voicings, degrees of the scale, and clarify a few things to do with the chord charts I use.
In this video is all the basic theory you’ll need to understand why chords work and sound as they do. I’m focusing on guitar, but the theory remains the same for all instruments. Learn and enjoy.