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Chord Types

Posted by mms 
Chord Types
October 31, 2007 05:30PM

A quick question regarding chords.

I am interested in knowing if there are variations of the standard chord
(ie all notes in the chord group having the same duration).

Can a chord be made up of notes having various durations?

Can a set of beamed notes be attached to a chord?

Re: Chord Types
November 06, 2007 04:20PM
This gets into the matter of harmonic rhythm. Most music you see doesn't consist solely of chords neatly vertically stacked. Often, what you get instead is a regular changing of the overall chord. Let me create an example, lets say that the chord type changes twice every measure, in 4/4 time, in C major. (Write this out on staff paper if you can, it will help a lot to see it!)

Before writing any notes, mark where the chords are going to change, and what they will be, like this: The first chord in our new piece (beats 1-2) will be the tonic (C,E,G), the second (beats 3-4) will be the subdominant (F,A,C). Measure two, make beats 1-2 the dominant (G,B,D,), and beats 3-4 return to the tonic (C,E,G). Now, we can create a melody using any rhythm we want, provided the notes fit into whatever chord we're in at the moment (you'll eventually be able to use non-chord tones as well, once you're comfortable with the matters at hand). Now beneath this melody, create a harmonic line, again using any rhythms you want, so long as the notes always fit into the chord when it changes every two beats. After you've done this, compare the melodic and harmonic lines together, (hopefully you gave them different rhythms!) and you still have the chords changing every two beats, despite whatever actual rhythms you might have written. This is known as harmonic rhythm.

I hope this helped, but if you're still confused, go to Wikipedia and search for Pachelbel's Canon. They have an excerpt notated on the website. Note that the chord changes every quarter note throughout the entire piece, even when the first violin, and then the second, start playing eighth notes (the notes that don't "fit" into the chords are the non-chord tones I mentioned earlier).
Re: Chord Types
November 10, 2007 07:31AM
Hi, chord symbols only exist to tell one what elements of harmony should occur in any piece of music ,nothing to do with timing To all you budding musicians out there,I would kindly suggest that-to understand better about music- then, I'm afraid that a minimum of effort and/or time must be spent studying at least the basics of music,especially if one wants to compose music or play commercial copies of existing music..............Sincerely
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