# Chords and Arpeggios

Basic introduction to chords and arpeggios.

4
A chord is a group of notes compliment each other when played together. Just as in the previous two lesson where major and minor scales were discussed, basic chords can be described as major and minor chords. For beginners, we generally associate a major chord with its major scale, and a minor chord with its minor scale. Thus, to build the chord we take notes from the relative scale in a particular manner.

For the 2 chords being described today, the major chord and the minor chord, we are going to take the first, third and fifth note of the respective scale.

Let's consider the major scale in Figure 1.

### Figure 1: Spelling of major scales

`1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8`
So the major chord becomes with the first, third and fifth note is as shown in Figure 2.

### Figure 2: Major Chord

`1 3 5`
Let's consider the scale of C described in Figure 3 to obtain the C major chord.

### Figure 3: C major scale

`1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8C D E F G A B C`
Thus, the C major chord is as described in Figure 4.

### Figure 4: C major chord

`1 3 5C E G`
The same process can be done to a minor scale. Let's consider the C natural minor scale in Figure 5.

### Figure 5: C Natural minor scale

`1 2 b3 4 5 b6 b7 8C D Eb F G Ab Bb C`
Thus, the C major chord is as described in Figure 6.

### Figure 6: C major chord

`1 b3 5C Eb G`
Please note that the difference between the C major and the C minor chord is the 3rd note. It is E in a major chord and Eb in a minor chord.

What applies to chords, applies to arpeggios. Arpeggio is a chord that instead of being played simultaneously, they are played one after the other. The other difference between chords and arpeggios is that an octave of the first note is played at the end and this is written as follows.

### Figure 7: Major arpeggio

`1 3 5 1`

### Figure 8: Minor arpeggio

`1 b3 5 1`
Please note that those are the 2 basic chord shapes. More complex chord shapes do exist.

The lesson on major scales can be found here.
The lesson on minor chords can be found here.