#1
Hello, I looked up for chords of some songs on this website, Automatic Stop by the strokes, for example.

The thing is, how can I know what is the pattern of those chords to play them? It could mean playing all the notes together, or sequentially (backwards or forwards) or even 1 2 3 1 2 3 1 2 (these numbers refer to notes and not chords) or any other different pattern.

Also, I find playing some chords that were mentioned sounds wrong, instead, I tried to play these chords with two notes only. For example. it was mentioned F# Major Chord but when I tried it, I found that playing it without A# gives the right sound.
#2
Quote by Radioheader377


The thing is, how can I know what is the pattern of those chords to play them? It could mean playing all the notes together, or sequentially (backwards or forwards) or even 1 2 3 1 2 3 1 2 (these numbers refer to notes and not chords) or any other different pattern.


By listening to the original song.

Quote by Radioheader377
Also, I find playing some chords that were mentioned sounds wrong, instead, I tried to play these chords with two notes only. For example. it was mentioned F# Major Chord but when I tried it, I found that playing it without A# gives the right sound.


If you're sure about that, it might be that a minor chord was accidentally notated as a major chord. A# is the third of F# major, and the third determines whether the chord is major or minor.
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#3
Yeah, as said above, use your ears, listen to the song. Do they play the chords as arpeggios or do the strum the chords, is there some kind of a rhythm pattern? Use your ears.

Also, remember that some chord tabs are wrong/inaccurate. Again, use your ears, don't trust them blindly. If something sounds wrong, then it most likely is wrong.

What you just did was instead of playing a F# major chord, you played a F# power chord. Power chord is a safe choice if you don't know whether the chord is major or minor.
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#4
That chord is F# major, btw, so it should sound OK with the A# included (sounds fine to me when I play it).

I suspect they were actually tuned down a half-step, because that makes all the chords a lot easier. Here's a transposition chart if you want to play it in G (tune down a half-step to play along with the track):

F# = G
D#m = Em
A#m = Bm
C# = D
G#m = Am
B = C

They might still have played most of those as barre shapes, to get the sound they do. But I don't suppose they decided "let's write a song in F#"
#5
Quote by jongtr
....[ ]....They might still have played most of those as barre shapes, to get the sound they do. But I don't suppose they decided "let's write a song in F#"
Oh hell, enharmonically speaking, I don't even think you're allowed to call that key "F#". More like "Gb"
#6
Quote by Captaincranky
Oh hell, enharmonically speaking, I don't even think you're allowed to call that key "F#". More like "Gb"
F# and Gb have the same amount of accidentals. Pick your poison.
#7
Quote by Captaincranky
Oh hell, enharmonically speaking, I don't even think you're allowed to call that key "F#". More like "Gb"
Well,maybe you'd call it Gb if you'd come down from G - which in this case I guess you would have.

Enharmonically, of course, there is no objective preference, no rule. One has 6 sharps, one has 6 flats. Enharmonic rules are only about consistency within either one.

I tend to think guitarists prefer sharps to flats generally (whoever tabbed this song certainly does) because they (we) tend to work mostly in sharp keys, and they're simpler when songs start borrowing from the parallel minor. In Gb major, your diatonic IV chord is Cb; wouldn't you prefer to call that B? And it gets worse: borrowing from Gb minor means chords like Fb, Bbb, Ebb, Cbm... b-b-b-b-but that's crazy! .
Call the key F# major, and your parallel minor is F# minor, with nice friendly E, A, D and Bm chords. (That's where enharmonics matter.)

In jazz, they tend to prefer Gb major (and Eb minor) to F# major /D# minor, either because concert players are used to playing in flat keys anyway (because of those damned horns), or because the secondary dominants you often get in jazz will be removing the odd flat here and there, rather than doubling up the sharps. E.g. the V chord of Ebm is Bb, which is simpler than A# for key of D# minor; an A# chord has a Cx (C##) note in it - which you or I would call "D" in the real world.
Last edited by jongtr at Aug 26, 2016,
#8
Quote by jongtr
,,,[ ]....I tend to think guitarists prefer sharps to flats generally (whoever tabbed this song certainly does) because they (we) tend to work mostly in sharp keys,....[ ]....
You're telling me. Every time I even see a single flat in the notation, I reach for my trusty capo.......

Pay me no mind, (like you do anyway), I'm just still pissed because they won't let me call Db, "C#". I mean, since the capo goes on the 1st fret, you are moving up! Right?

And speaking of "those damned horns", I was never able to successfully access "Chicago", in spite of their bangin' guitar player.

Quote by jongtr
...[ ]....I suspect they were actually tuned down a half-step, because that makes all the chords a lot easier. Here's a transposition chart if you want to play it in G (tune down a half-step to play along with the track):

F# = G
D#m = Em
A#m = Bm
C# = D
G#m = Am
B = C
Hey wait, those are the chords to.............um, everything!
Quote by jongtr
They might still have played most of those as barre shapes, to get the sound they do. But I don't suppose they decided "let's write a song in F#"
Likely the baritone singer couldn't hit G4. That would be my excuse anyway..
Last edited by Captaincranky at Aug 26, 2016,
#9
Quote by Captaincranky
just still pissed because they won't let me call Db, "C#". I mean, since the capo goes on the 1st fret, you are moving up! Right?
Those cruel bastards! Never mind, if you were in my band I'd let you call Db "C#" all you wanted. Then just roll my eyes at the rest of the band behind your back...
Quote by Captaincranky

Hey wait, those are the chords to.............um, everything!
You said it! Maybe that was why they chose F#. "Hey. let's write a really original song... drop it all a half-step and no one will ever know they've heard it all before..."

Maybe an attack of Spinal Tap: "Yeah, like,the key of F# is so much cooler than G..."