Welcome! Log In Create A New Profile

Advanced

What is this chord shape?

Posted by Rex Hamilton III 
What is this chord shape?
April 25, 2017 06:33AM
Okay, it's a 4 fret span and is moveable around the fretboard. Eg:

----------------
----------------
----------------
------5--------
------2--------
----------------

3 famous song examples that feature this are: Power of Love (Huey Lewis), Number of the Beast (Iron Maiden) and Hells Bells (AC/DC). Please read all of my explanation and tabs before replying, thanks :)

Now I assume it's a major chord without a 5th - so the above example would be G major without the D (ie: B and G). If we look at The Number of the Beast, and m understanding is correct, then the chord progression spells out C, G, C, D:


-----------------------------------
-----------------------------------
-----------------------------------
------5-----5-----5----7--------
------3-----2-----3----5--------
----------------------------------


The problem I have with this is that it's not normal, in rock & pop, to find chords with no 5, and the fact is the chord often appears in a walk down of the bass line which does, adiittedly, give a nice twist and allows for a more subtle shift when dropping to a chord that's a fifth lower. An example of walking down the bass line is Hells Bells:


------------------------------------------------------------------------------
------------------------------------------------------------------------------
------9---7---9------7---5---7--------------------------------------------
------7---7---7------7---5---7------------------5----5----2-------------
---------------------------------------------0-----3----2----0--------------
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Another example is The Final Countdown by Europe. This song features both a walk down and a walk up (same chords but in reverse order):

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
--7---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
--7-----------7--------------7-----------7-----------4-----------4------------2-----------2-------------
--5----5--5--5----5--5----4----4--4--4----4--4--2----2--2--2----2--2--0----0--0--0-------------



And the idea that it's a shift to a chord a fifith lower without needing to change strings or have too much of a shift in the sound of the chord is destroyed by the intro riff to Huey Lewis's Power of Love. (Notes grouped together are 8th notes, spaces indicate 1/4 notes).
--------------------------------------------------------------
--------------------------------------------------------------
--------------------------------------------------------------
------5--5--5--2-----2--2--2-----------------------5----- REPEAT
------3--3--3--0-----0--0--0--3--3--3--5----5---2-----
-----------------------------------1--1--1--3----3---------

The reason my theory is wrong is because whilst we have a fairly standard C > Am > F > G progression, the very last chord which sets up the repeat of the riff would be a G along with the 6th root G that preceded it.

1) Why shift from one G shape to another? Is it really just to get a closer bass note (B) to lead into the C when the riff repeats?

2) If it's a G then why does it sound different to the power chord G on the 6th string?



Thx in advance



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 04/25/2017 06:35AM by Rex Hamilton III. (view changes)
Re: What is this chord shape?
April 28, 2017 06:38AM
I haven't listened to your specific examples, but I'll offer this.

What you're describing is just two notes, a minor third apart, so it isn't really a "chord", at least not by itself. So what "is" depends on what the music around it implies as the "missing parts". One very common places to hear a minor third, in a chord, is as the upper interval in a root inversion major triad. In other words your playing the B and D of a G chord, G B D. Another possibility would be that it's the lower interval in a minor triad. In other words, the B and D of Bm. Less likely, but certainly possible... It's either interval of a diminished triad. Another fairly common place where this might be played is as the top interval of a dominant seventh chord, i.e. the B and D of E G# B D. Same could go for a minor seven if the G weren't sharped

It just all depends on the context. Try working out the full chord possibilities and see whether they seem to fit with the music. If it's B and D, for example, try playing the full G chord, the Bm chord, the full E7 and the full Em7. None of them may sound "right" because they're not what is in the actual song, but there should be one of them that doesn't sound "wrong".
Re: What is this chord shape?
April 28, 2017 12:15PM
The notes in the first example are B & G. It's a minor 6th interval. If it has to be seen as an implied chord, then it's it's a first inversion G major with no 5th (which isn't that important anyway) OR - depending on context - a rootless, 2nd inversion E minor.
Re: What is this chord shape?
April 30, 2017 09:50AM
jjjtttggg Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I haven't listened to your specific examples, but
> I'll offer this.
>
> What you're describing is just two notes, a minor
> third apart, so it isn't really a "chord", at
> least not by itself. So what "is" depends on what
> the music around it implies as the "missing
> parts". One very common places to hear a minor
> third, in a chord, is as the upper interval in a
> root inversion major triad. In other words your
> playing the B and D of a G chord, G B D.
>
> It just all depends on the context.

Yeah, that's what I was thinking. The examples I listed should provide enough context to figure out what chord they're implying hence why I see the shape as an inverted major chord without a 5th.

I may also have seen it extended to 3 notes. Eg:


--------------------
--------------------
-----5--------------
-----5--------------
-----2--------------
---------------------

In the Number of the Beast, Power of Love and Hell's Bells examples listed in my OP it made sense for this minor 3rd interval to represent G but with the 3rd note added - C - all that's thrown awry. G, B, C, D make for a strange chord!
Re: What is this chord shape?
April 30, 2017 01:31PM
Though we all agree that this is a G...


--------------------
--------------------
--------------------
-----5--------------
-----2--------------
---------------------


Then what's going on in the Huey Lewis example? It goes C > Am > F > G and then into the G inversion chord just before it goes back into the C to repeat the riff.

--------------------------------------------------------------
--------------------------------------------------------------
--------------------------------------------------------------
------5--5--5--2-----2--2--2-----------------------5----- REPEAT
------3--3--3--0-----0--0--0--3--3--3--5----5---2-----
-----------------------------------1--1--1--3----3---------


1) Why go from one G to another? Is it literally just to continue the walking bass line instead of hanging on G in the bass?

2) Why does it sound different to G? Usually when you play another variant of the same chord it still sounds the same as it's still the same notes.
Re: What is this chord shape?
April 30, 2017 11:56PM
Rex Hamilton III Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Though we all agree that this is a G...
>
>
> --------------------
> --------------------
> --------------------
> -----5--------------
> -----2--------------
> ---------------------
>
>
> Then what's going on in the Huey Lewis example? It
> goes C > Am > F > G and then into the G inversion
> chord just before it goes back into the C to
> repeat the riff.
>
> --------------------------------------------------
> ------------
> --------------------------------------------------
> ------------
> --------------------------------------------------
> ------------
> ------5--5--5--2-----2--2--2----------------------
> -5----- REPEAT
> ------3--3--3--0-----0--0--0--3--3--3--5----5---2-
> ----
> -----------------------------------1--1--1--3----3
> ---------
>
>
> 1) Why go from one G to another? Is it literally
> just to continue the walking bass line instead of
> hanging on G in the bass?

Yes it enables the bass to be the leading note (B) of the key and lead smoothly to C
>
> 2) Why does it sound different to G? Usually when
> you play another variant of the same chord it
> still sounds the same as it's still the same
> notes.

The first lot are all open 5th power chords. They'don't contain the 3rd - the note that determines whether its major or minor. The last on isn't. It's an implied G major containing the root and the 3rd - so it's going to have a different sound and a stronger pull to the the tonic because of the leading note.
Sorry, only registered users may post in this forum.

Click here to login