Scales vs. Chords

April 30, 2014

Dan Webbert

One thing I spend a lot of time thinking about is how different chords fit into a given scale. For example, the notes in the C major scale yield the C major , D minor, E minor, F major, G major, A minor, and B diminished chords. Taking it a step further, you could have the C maj7, D min7, E min7, F maj7, G dominant7, A min7, and B dim7. All of the notes in these chords can be found in the C major scale.

What really confounds me is the use of a chord that uses a note outside of the scale in use. Perhaps an A major? Now you have a whole new scale underlying that chord, creating chaos out of the musical order of your melody…and song writers do it all the time, with good results. In the C maj and A maj example, the tonic…

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