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"Good improvisation communicates harmonic progression melodically. Effective melodies manipulate harmonic content through the use of guide tones and preparatory gravity notes, masterfully woven in systematic tension, release, and transparent harmonic definition."

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March 28, 2013 | Chord Commonalities

In our August 2005 archive issue of Mandolin Sessions, we discussed how particular chords could have a different flavor or mood, depending on the context. Since we've explored a lot of ways to streamline extended chords into three simple notes, we thought it opportune to dig this issue up. In particular, we mentioned the four notes of a m6 chord where the same as a m7b5 and a rootless 9th chord.

Read article: Chord Commonalties; m6, m7b5, rootless 9th

Am6 = A C E F# * F#m7b5 = F# A C E * D9 (rootless) = (no D) F# A C E

We created a handy reference chart for you to visualize this.


What's interesting is how the same set of notes F# A C E can be used in each of the three different "planets" of the Tonal Universe.


Am6 can be a Tonic chord, with an added voice for color. All chords progress to Am in the key of A minor.

F#m7b5 can be a Dominant Preparation chord. It is the iim7b5 chord in the key of E minor.

D9 (rootless) can be a Dominant chord. It is the V7 chord in the key of G Major (or Minor).

F# A C E. Same notes, different hats.

Sometimes when you throw out a set of notes, you don't always know where you are going. It pays to listen to what's going on around you!

Chord Commonalties; m6, m7b5, rootless 9th
Tasty Major landing chords
Chord Economy
Fourthness and Purple
Take Three

Posted by Ted at March 28, 2013 12:47 PM

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