Welcome to the Piano World Piano Forums
Over 2 million posts about pianos, digital pianos, and all types of keyboard instruments
Join the World's Largest Community of Piano Lovers (it's free)
It's Fun to Play the Piano ... Please Pass It On!

Gifts and supplies for the musician
SEARCH
the Forums & Piano World

This custom search works much better than the built in one and allows searching older posts.
Ad (Piano Sing)
How to Make Your Piano Sing
(ad) Pearl River
Pearl River Pianos
(ad 125) Sweetwater - Digital Keyboards & Other Gear
Digital Pianos at Sweetwater
(ad) Pianoteq
(ad) P B Guide
Acoustic & Digital Piano Guide
Who's Online
114 registered (Anita Potter, Anne'sson, Alkanaut, accordeur, A Guy, 27 invisible), 1453 Guests and 18 Spiders online.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Quick Links to Useful Piano & Music Resources
Our Classified Ads
Find Piano Professionals-

*Piano Dealers - Piano Stores
*Piano Tuners
*Piano Teachers
*Piano Movers
*Piano Restorations
*Piano Manufacturers
*Organs

Quick Links:
*Advertise On Piano World
*Free Piano Newsletter
*Online Piano Recitals
*Piano Recitals Index
*Piano & Music Accessories
*Music School Listings
* Buying a Piano
*Buying A Acoustic Piano
*Buying a Digital Piano
*Pianos for Sale
*Sell Your Piano
*How Old is My Piano?
*Piano Books
*Piano Art, Pictures, & Posters
*Directory/Site Map
*Contest
*Links
*Virtual Piano
*Music Word Search
*Piano Screen Saver
*Piano Videos
*Virtual Piano Chords
(ad) Estonia Piano
Estonia Pianos
Topic Options
#1115138 - 12/28/08 02:18 PM Recognizing Chords from Sheet Music Notes
JagNut Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/17/08
Posts: 24
Loc: Arlington Texas
In my attempts at self-teaching, I have done a considerable amount of reading about music theory as an adjunct to my early-lesson practice.

I understand most of what I have read about chord construction, even though I remember little of it, and can do even less.

The construction of basic chords (Major, Minor, Augmented, Diminished, 7th, etc.) seems fairly straightforward. And I understand the concept of inversions, and that sometimes notes are eliminated while still preserving the same chord.

What I wonder about is the inverse. If I see a scale containing, say, three/four note chords, how do I go about identifying the name of the chord? Is it necessary to memorize all the notes of all the chords, as well as all their possible inversions?

Or is their some simpler heuristic that that I haven't yet found to simplify the task? (Thankfully, a lot of sheet music provides the names of the chords).
_________________________
Glen

Top
(ads P/S)

Sauter Pianos

#1115139 - 12/28/08 03:31 PM Re: Recognizing Chords from Sheet Music Notes
knotty Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/01/07
Posts: 2999
Loc: Bethesda, MD (Washington D.C)
usually, a chord will include the 7th and the 3rd.
So what you do is start by identifying the possible chords.

For example, if I play Gb C and F
what chord can it be.

If Gb is the 3rd, then C would be the 7th. That makes a nice D7 with a #9

If Gb is the 7th, then C is the 3rd, and that makes a nice Ab7 with with a 13th in it.

F can't be a 3rd or 7th because F# is 1/2 above.

So there you go, the chord is either D7 or Ab7.

They happen to be a tritone apart, which is normal for dom. 7th chords.

Try it with this chord:
Ab C Db and F
what chords could it be?

hope this helps

Top
#1115140 - 12/28/08 09:55 PM Re: Recognizing Chords from Sheet Music Notes
rocket88 Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/04/06
Posts: 3189
I don't know if this is the answer you are looking for, but it is a method that is helpful in identifying chords that are not in a readily-identifiable form, i.e. the notes are mixed up, which occurs often.

First, eliminate any redundant notes.

Next, group the notes together as closely as possible.

See if you can identify what you have.

If not, take the bottom note and put it on the top. For example, if you have A, middle C, E, and G, take the A and put it above the G.

Now you have C, E, G, and A. The C-E-G is a C major root triad; the A is the 6th tone; The chord is a C6.

If putting the bottom note on the top does not reveal the chord, keep doing it for the same number of notes, i.e. 4 notes, 4 inversions.

Often what you do have is a chord, with a note that does not fit any conventional chord. For example, you might have C-E-G-F#, which is not, to my knowledge, a chord. In that case, what you have is a chord, (c-e-g) and a melody note which is the note that does not fit.

Hope this helps.
_________________________
Music teacher and piano player.

Top
#1115141 - 12/29/08 12:31 PM Re: Recognizing Chords from Sheet Music Notes
Highlander One Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/05/08
Posts: 111
Loc: Texas
Or the notes A, middle C, E, and G, could also be an Am7 chord in root position.

H1
_________________________
Piano Sales since 1992
Piano study since 1969
Piano teacher since 1992
Touring musician since 1985
Studio musician since 1996
I Love the Piano

Top
#1115142 - 12/29/08 02:18 PM Re: Recognizing Chords from Sheet Music Notes
rocket88 Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/04/06
Posts: 3189
That was such an easy one I missed it!
_________________________
Music teacher and piano player.

Top
#1115143 - 12/29/08 02:44 PM Re: Recognizing Chords from Sheet Music Notes
Swingin' Barb Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/21/06
Posts: 889
Loc: North Carolina
 Quote:
Originally posted by knotty: Try it with this chord:
Ab C Db and F
what chords could it be?[/b]
Bb minor 7 comes to mind quickly. I use that one a lot for my left hand closed voicing.

Fun thread!
_________________________
A Sudnow Method Fanatic
"Color tones, can't live without them"

To hear how I have progressed since 2006, check out: http://b.kane.home.mindspring.com

Top
#1115144 - 12/29/08 03:03 PM Re: Recognizing Chords from Sheet Music Notes
Highlander One Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/05/08
Posts: 111
Loc: Texas
It is a Db maj7. \:\)


H1
_________________________
Piano Sales since 1992
Piano study since 1969
Piano teacher since 1992
Touring musician since 1985
Studio musician since 1996
I Love the Piano

Top
#1115145 - 12/29/08 06:29 PM Re: Recognizing Chords from Sheet Music Notes
jjtpiano Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/19/08
Posts: 213
Loc: Jamestown, NC
+1

Second inversion.
_________________________
Live Music Is Best

Top
#1115146 - 12/29/08 08:09 PM Re: Recognizing Chords from Sheet Music Notes
smjl Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 11/05/08
Posts: 13
 Quote:
Originally posted by knotty:
usually, a chord will include the 7th and the 3rd.
[/b]
I'm curious why you say this--maybe in some music, but I don't think that's generally the case at all.

I like rocket88's description, that's pretty much how I do it. It gets faster with practice, and with chord familiarity. After a while, you will have memorized the simpler chords, but I still have to work through possibilities for some of the trickier chords. Also: if you know the key of the piece, often the chords that show up will be the I, IV, V, V7, and relative minors, so I keep an eye out for those as the first options.

Top
#1115147 - 12/29/08 10:17 PM Re: Recognizing Chords from Sheet Music Notes
mdsdurango Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/01/04
Posts: 1755
Loc: Durango Colorado
Glen, what kind of sheet music are you working with?
If you are reading both clefs you may have good luck identifying the base note as the root of the chord. Not always but it should be in there somewhere, usually at count one.

Thirds and sevenths are the "essential chord notes" in jazz and rarely will you see a chord without those two notes. Of course the third and the seventh move around a bit so you still have to do some analysis.
_________________________
WHAT???????
Yamaha S6, U5C, P120
http://michaelstith.com

Top

Moderator:  BB Player, casinitaly 
What's Hot!!
Christmas Header
- > Gift Ideas for Music Lovers < -
From PianoSupplies.com a division of Piano World.
-------------------
The December Free Piano Newsletter
-------------------
Forums Rules & Help
-------------------
ADVERTISE
on Piano World

The world's most popular piano web site.
-------------------
PIANO BOOKS
Interesting books about the piano, pianists, piano history, biographies, memoirs and more!
(ad) Yamaha CP Music Rest Promo
Yamaha CP Music Rest Promo
(ad) HAILUN Pianos
Hailun Pianos - Click for More
Ad (Seiler/Knabe)
Knabe Pianos
(125ad) Dampp Chaser
Dampp Chaser Piano Life Saver
(ad) Lindeblad Piano
Lindeblad Piano Restoration
(ad) Piano Music Sale - Dover Publications
Piano Music Sale
Sheet Music Plus (125)
Sheet Music Plus Featured Sale
New Topics - Multiple Forums
Trill technique question
by pianolearnerstride
45 minutes 25 seconds ago
Anyone use a seat cushion?
by DeadPoets
Today at 08:48 PM
Lester Betsy Ross Spinet- worth?
by cobalt60
Today at 08:22 PM
How deep into the tuning hammer should pin go?
by JoeThePro
Today at 07:37 PM
The friction, blubbering, and lost motion are eradicated!
by music32
Today at 07:15 PM
Forum Stats
77362 Members
42 Forums
160003 Topics
2349640 Posts

Max Online: 15252 @ 03/21/10 11:39 PM
Gift Ideas for Music Lovers!
Find the Perfect Gift for the Music Lovers on your List!
Visit our online store today.

Visit our online store for gifts for music lovers

 
Help keep the forums up and running with a donation, any amount is appreciated!
Or by becoming a Subscribing member! Thank-you.
Donate   Subscribe
 
Our Piano Related Classified Ads
|
Dealers | Tuners | Lessons | Movers | Restorations | Pianos For Sale | Sell Your Piano |

Advertise on Piano World
| Subscribe | Piano World | PianoSupplies.com | Advertise on Piano World | Donate | Link to Us | Classifieds |
| |Contact | Privacy | Legal | About Us | Site Map | Free Newsletter | Press Room |


copyright 1997 - 2014 Piano World ® all rights reserved
No part of this site may be reproduced without prior written permission