#1
Im trying to construct my own chords and i was wondering how do i determine where each notes of the chord should be on each string? Like if i wanted to construct C major should the 3rd be on the 4th string or 3rd string or etc... and same for the 5th or 7th or whatever notes that are in the chord that im trying to construct. Is there a set rule or is it just determined by note location and trying to create a chord thats physically possible to play?
Last edited by Darkn3ss99 at Jul 15, 2015,
#2
^Doesn't matter. But you're going to start to see a large amount of patterns as you work through figuring out how to play things.
"There are two styles of music. Good music and bad music." -Duke Ellington

"If you really think about it, the guitar is a pointless instrument." - Robert Fripp
#3
Quote by Darkn3ss99
Im trying to construct my own chords and i was wondering how do i determine where each notes of the chord should be on each string? Like if i wanted to construct C major should the 3rd be on the 4th string or 3rd string or etc... and same for the 5th or 7th or whatever notes that are in the chord that im trying to construct. Is there a set rule or is it just determined by note location and trying to create a chord thats physically possible to play?


Not so much a set rule, but it's not a bad idea to do them in root triad order. Many notes can be doubled or occur more than once. Generally the Root is the bass, and the higher extensions are the higher upper voices. So R 3 5 etc. Start there. Sometimes strings and just physical stretch and reach can determine what fingerings are ideal or even plausible.

Later start looking into inversions and voice leading, once you get the basics down, as far as triads are concerned.

Best,

Sean
#4
Quote by Darkn3ss99
Im trying to construct my own chords and i was wondering how do i determine where each notes of the chord should be on each string? Like if i wanted to construct C major should the 3rd be on the 4th string or 3rd string or etc... and same for the 5th or 7th or whatever notes that are in the chord that im trying to construct. Is there a set rule or is it just determined by note location and trying to create a chord thats physically possible to play?

Chord construction doesn't care about what note is on what string. It's instrument agnostic, for the most part. In other words, be more concerned about the notes contained in the chord; figure out how to play the chord on guitar after you have constructed the chord.

I assume you can look at something like below and then play it on guitar:


If not, well...might want to start there -- with learning sheet music.
Last edited by crazysam23_Atax at Jul 15, 2015,
#5
There will be differences in sound and emotion that chord brings.
For example put the 3rd as the highest note of the chord and chord automatically becomes to sound more dramatic than the same chord with 1st as highest note.
Just because 3rd is more emotional and 1st is more stable.
Both ways can work in different situations.
Some time you may want to add some drama or tension in your song, the other time you you may want stability as final chord for example.
As far as the low note is still the root (1st) the order of other notes and where they are on the fretboard doesn't matter.
Otherwise if lowest note is not the root it's gonna be inversion of the triad.
But if the order of other notes are different it's still the same chord.
Just sounds a little different.
Last edited by bocharovpasha at Jul 15, 2015,
#6
learn inversions of each triad..C E G / E G C / G C E on each set of three strings .. E A D
/ A D G / D G B / G B E

learn the major scale chords in the above in all keys ..then add the 7th tone...making your string sets EADG etc...you will be able to finger all the chords..a few will require a slight stretch but most will be easy to finger..
play well

wolf
#7
In broad terms it doesn't matter what order you play the notes, except for the lowest note you play.

That being said, as you gain experience you'll hear differences and decide that you prefer certain voicings over others at different times. But until you really start to hear those differences, don't worry about them too much.
#8
Quote by bocharovpasha
There will be differences in sound and emotion that chord brings.
For example put the 3rd as the highest note of the chord and chord automatically becomes to sound more dramatic than the same chord with 1st as highest note.
Just because 3rd is more emotional and 1st is more stable.
Both ways can work in different situations.
Some time you may want to add some drama or tension in your song, the other time you you may want stability as final chord for example.
As far as the low note is still the root (1st) the order of other notes and where they are on the fretboard doesn't matter.
Otherwise if lowest note is not the root it's gonna be inversion of the triad.
But if the order of other notes are different it's still the same chord.
Just sounds a little different.

I wouldn't really worry about that that much. If the guitar is in the background (like it most of the time is), the effect the chord has will be pretty much the same regardless of the voicing. Also, if there are other instruments playing at the same time, the lowest note you play has no effect on the inversion. It matters more if you are playing without accompaniment. That's when I would think about this stuff more carefully. Of course different voicings always sound different. Just use your ears, and play voicings whose sound you like.
Quote by AlanHB
Just remember that there are no boring scales, just boring players.

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Last edited by MaggaraMarine at Jul 15, 2015,
#9
Yeah, chords aren't inherently more emotional than others. No way.
"There are two styles of music. Good music and bad music." -Duke Ellington

"If you really think about it, the guitar is a pointless instrument." - Robert Fripp
#10
I have another question about constructing these chords for jazz in terms of voicing. Should i try to build and play these chords open or around the middle of the fretboard or around the 9th fret etc...??
#11
You'll probably get the most use out of the moveable chord "shapes", but if you're going to ask what you should do, then it's really up to what you're playing and how you feel like sounding. At the end of systematically figuring out all your triads and 7th chords, you still have to develop a sense of when to do something outside of basic patterns. Chord voicings are practically infinite, so you really need to understand them as a collection of notes and how those notes sound different when ordered and re-ordered.

If all you're doing is reading charts, you probably won't use open string voicings too often. If you're going to perform or write jazz music, you do need to bring the creativity and go beyond stock comping chords. Extended harmonies, open strings, reharmonization... all tools available to you.

All that said, you should practice the voicings wherever they occur on the neck, even if that does include open string voicings you will not often use. That is mostly as a matter of practice and habit so that you are thoroughly oriented with both the sounds and the physical feel of those chords.
#12
Quote by Darkn3ss99
I have another question about constructing these chords for jazz in terms of voicing. Should i try to build and play these chords open or around the middle of the fretboard or around the 9th fret etc...??

All of the above.
Si
#13
Build them literally everywhere. I know at least 12 voicings for each chord.

I don't use them all equally of course, but I make a point to learn that many. Options, options.
"There are two styles of music. Good music and bad music." -Duke Ellington

"If you really think about it, the guitar is a pointless instrument." - Robert Fripp
#14
Quote by Darkn3ss99
I have another question about constructing these chords for jazz in terms of voicing. Should i try to build and play these chords open or around the middle of the fretboard or around the 9th fret etc...??

You should know how to build them anywhere, because the usual idea with playing chord progressions is to make the voice-leading work. That means you want shapes for all chords as close as possible to each other on the fretboard, wherever you choose to play on the fretboard. (You can pick any position, and play any chord there, within a fret or two.)

Bear in mind with jazz chords that the most important notes are the "guide tones", the 3rd and 7th. These communicate the function of the chord. (The root is important too, but commonly played by the bass.)
If the chord has a perfect 5th, you can leave that out, at least if makes it easier to include any specified extensions or alterations.

When playing chord sequences, check how the 3rds and 7ths connect from chord to chord (3rd leads to 7th and vice versa); and look out for other potential leading moves (b5 to root, 9 to 13, 13 to 3, 11 to root, etc). Won't happen all the time, of course, but is usually there in the standard "circle" progressions where roots move up in 4ths (down in 5ths).

Certainly movable shapes (no open strings) are more useful than open position shapes - not only because a movable shape is (er...) movable (meaning the same shape is used for many different chords), but because open strings are out of your control once played (you can only mute them, and need an extra hand move to do that).
Last edited by jongtr at Jul 22, 2015,
#15
Jazz has nothing to do with it; the 3rd and 7th are the most important notes period.

If you're going to go down the jazz path, what's more important than ultra close voice leading is the melody. Comping is playing a 4part harmonized guitar solo, underneath another solo. Your 'lines' are free to jump around, they aren't locked into moving to certain pitches. But they do need to have a form of logic, and not be a random slapping of chords all over the place.
"There are two styles of music. Good music and bad music." -Duke Ellington

"If you really think about it, the guitar is a pointless instrument." - Robert Fripp
#16
Quote by Jet Penguin
Jazz has nothing to do with it; the 3rd and 7th are the most important notes period.
Except - if it's not jazz - you can get whole songs with no 7ths at all... and not a lot of 3rds either, if we're talking certain kinds of rock...

Tell a heavy rock guitarist they don't need to play roots and 5ths, and they may well say "wtf? what else is there?? "

Quote by Jet Penguin

If you're going to go down the jazz path, what's more important than ultra close voice leading is the melody. Comping is playing a 4part harmonized guitar solo, underneath another solo.
Sometimes, maybe. Other times, that's way too much. (We have two threads getting tangled up together here.... )
#17
^We do.

I'm talking as usual, in a completely genre-less context. I try and relate everything to an absolute scenario where genre has nothing to do with it. The JP 'lego' strategy, if you will.

You probably want to keep those power chords in rock. What I mean is that as far as being harmonically clear goes, you need that 3 and often 7.

As far as the comping goes, just because I use the words 'guitar solo' doesn't mean you need to play a ton of notes. 1 chord a bar is more than enough when done right
"There are two styles of music. Good music and bad music." -Duke Ellington

"If you really think about it, the guitar is a pointless instrument." - Robert Fripp