Music Chords Theory

Chord theory, structure and progressions

The definition of a music chord, the different types of music chords, and the intervals used to make up these chords.

Music chord

Music chords are made up of 2 or more notes played simultaneously.

The most commonly played chords are 3-note chords which are also called triads. They can be extended by adding more notes forming 7th's, 9th's, 11th's and 13th's.

We will be looking at the theory of music chords including chord structure, and chord progressions.

Below is a brief summary of each category with links to comprehensive pages relating to each topic including reference material which is free to download.

Music Chords

  • what is a music chord?
  • the most common music chords?
  • intervals and the concept of stacking 3rds - minor 3rd's and major 3rd's
  • how stacking thirds creates major, minor, augmented and diminished triads
  • what is a music chord composed of?
  • what are the names of music notes and chords?
  • Music Charts: triads, intervals, chord symbols and download
  • Music Charts: 7th chords or 4 note chords, intervals, chord symbols and download
  • Music Charts: extended chords including 9th, 11th and 13th chords, intervals, chord symbols and notes... free download
  • what is a suspended chord?... more on music chords

Chord Structure

  • what does chord structure consist of?
  • what are the symbols associated with chord types?
  • Music Charts: all the different types of chords, chord symbols and chord formulas which equate to notes in the download
  • the importance of knowing and understanding your chord formulas... more on chord structure

Chord Progressions

  • what is a chord progression?
  • basic chord progressions
  • 3-chord progressions
  • 12-bar blues
  • Music Charts: chord progressions for all major and minor download
  • the meaning of enharmonic?
  • Building Chords by Stacking Thirds!
  • Scale Tone Chords? 
  • adding interest to your chord progressions...more on chord progressions

Chord Transposition

Transposing chords, notes and keys.
  • How to transpose using simple rules
  • Examples using a song segment with chords and lyrics
  • Transposition Chart with examples and free download...more on chord transpositions

In closing...

If you understand intervals, you are well on your way to understanding the theory of music chords. If you know your chord formulas, you can work out any chord and play it in a multitude of different positions on any instrument that enables you to play chords, such as piano, keyboards, guitar etc.

Download all the available charts, stick them on your wall and use them whenever the need arises. You will find yourself referring to them time and time again. The more you play them, the more you remember them. 😊

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