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Answer: The Two Primary sounds in Music are the “Major” sound and the “Minor” sound.

7th Chord Fig1

Fig 1. The 7th Chords all involve the use of the 7th degree of the Major Scale.

-The most common 7th chords are the:  Major, Minor, Dominant & Diminished.  “4 TYPES OF 7th CHORD”.

-Simply use the scale notes used to build the Triad (1st, 3rd & 5th) then ADD the 7th degree of the scale.

Examples using the Key of C:
The Key of “C” Major scale is:
C – D – E – F – G – A – B – C  (it has no sharps or flats).

Note:If you want the notes of a Major chord other than C you must use that chord’s major scale by
following the intervals:  W-W-H-W-W-W-H

1. Chord Type is MAJOR (the happy sounding scale):

-“C Major 7th”   (also written C Maj7 or CM7).  Note: the upper case M in CM7 indicates major.

From the Major Scale, the 1-3-5-7 notes are:  C – E – G – B

C Maj7 Chord with Notes

Fig.2 The C Major 7 Chord.
By removing the Index finger from the C Chord you include the B note & create the “C Major 7” Chord.

2. Chord Type is MINOR (the sad sounding scale):

-“C Minor 7th”   (also written C Min7 or Cm7).  Note: the lower case m in Cm7 indicates minor.

From the Minor Scale (flat the 3rd for the minor scale) , the 1-3b-5-7b (the 7th also goes flat) notes are:  C – Eb – G – Bb

Cm7 Chord with notes

Fig3. The Cm7 Chord.

3. Chord Type is DOMINANT:

-“C Dominant 7th”   (also written C dom7 or most commonly C7).

From the Major Scale, the 1-3-5-7b (flat the 7th) notes are:  C – E – G – Bb

 C7 Chord with notes

Fig.4. The C7 Chord.

4. Chord Type is DIMINISHED:

-“C Diminishedt 7th”   (also written C dim7).

From the Major Scale, the 1-3b-5b-7bb (double flat the 7th) notes are:  C – Eb – Gb – Bbb
Note: a double flat is two half steps or one whole step therefore the Bbb is an “A” note.

C dim7 Chord with notes

Fig.5. The C dim7 Chord.

Quiz: What are the notes of the D7 chord?


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