# Theory newb question here

Music Theory
 Skold 5 Apr 2008 01:34 | Quote Joined: 14 Mar 2008United States Karma: 3 Ok, when constructing chords, are the steps what determines if the chord is Major, Minor, etc.? Because, I can play a G using the steps 1-3-5 (which are the Major steps), and it's a Major chord. However, if I flatten the 3rd (making the steps become 1-b3-5, which are the Minor steps), it becomes a Minor chord. So, is this the correct way of thinking about it?
 ThePusher 5 Apr 2008 01:37 | Quote Joined: 19 Jan 2008Canada Lessons: 3Karma: 3 yeah man, to make a 7th chord you add the 7th note and so forth, or with Suspended 2nds you double flat the 3rd or sharp the third to make a Sus4.
 Skold 5 Apr 2008 01:46 | Quote Joined: 14 Mar 2008United States Karma: 3 But what would make a chord like C7 a 7th chord? Because the C chord has the 7th note in it already. The only difference I see in it is that the C7 chord has that A# in there.
 league 5 Apr 2008 02:07 | Quote Joined: way backUnited States Lessons: 2Karma: 10 I got confused with some basic theory.Lol .I need a refresher on this concept.
 Skold 5 Apr 2008 02:21 | Quote Joined: 14 Mar 2008United States Karma: 3 Haha, yeah, I suppose it's good to get back to theory after a while away from it. I'm really glad I decided to start learning theory. It's really helped me understand things in the music world.
 league 5 Apr 2008 02:42 | Quote Joined: way backUnited States Lessons: 2Karma: 10 Whats really funny is that I tried to answer your question but I had to edit it after I saw it didn't make sense.
 ThePusher 5 Apr 2008 02:57 | Quote Joined: 19 Jan 2008Canada Lessons: 3Karma: 3 Kay think like this, 1st note is C then D,E,F,G,A,B,C again right so a C chord is 135 meaning CEG so to make a Maj7th chord you would add the note B or to make a Dominant 7th you flat the 7th making it an A# right, so to make a Maj9th you make it 13579 for notes meaning you add the D note or a Dominant 9th is the same but you keep the b7th, for Sustaineds you would substitute the 3rd note for either a 2nd or a b4th note, for 11ths & 13ths you would substitute the 9th for an 11th or 13th, and for Minors you always flat the 3rd.
 league 5 Apr 2008 03:07 | Quote Joined: way backUnited States Lessons: 2Karma: 10 I remember now. But does that mean 5ths are technically major?
 blackholesun 5 Apr 2008 05:41 | Quote Joined: 04 Jan 2007United Kingdom Licks: 1Karma: 11 Moderator ThePusher says:for Sustaineds you would substitute the 3rd note for either a 2nd or a b4th note Almost, you substitute the 3rd for either a 2nd (sus2) or a 4th (sus4), that's a PERFECT fourth, not a flattened. The interval of a 5th is what is known as a perfect interval, because it is neither major nor minor. Whether a chord is major or minor depends on what the 3rd is. If it's a suspension or a 5th then technically the chord is neither major nor minor, but you can look at where the chord is in the scale to find out whether the 3rd what be major or minor. For example, in the key of C major, a D5 power chord is minor, because C major goes C, D, E, F, G, A, B, C. Counting up from D, the root is D, the 3rd is F (minor 3rd), and the 5th is A (perfect 5th). This makes a minor chord.
 blackholesun 5 Apr 2008 05:57 | Quote Joined: 04 Jan 2007United Kingdom Licks: 1Karma: 11 Moderator Skold says:But what would make a chord like C7 a 7th chord? Because the C chord has the 7th note in it already. The only difference I see in it is that the C7 chord has that A# in there. Firstly, remember that chords are always built from the major scale. A C major chord contains the notes C, E and G, which are the 1st, 3rd and 5th notes of the C major scale. In the key of C major, to make C a 7th chord, you add the 7th note of the scale: ``` 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 1 C D E F G A B C * * * * ``` As you can see, the 7th note of the C major scale is B. Adding this to a regular C major chord gives a Cmaj7 chord (C major seventh). To make a dominant 7th chord (C7), then the minor 7th must be added to a regular C major chord. The only way this can be done is if the C is the dominant (5th note of the scale), which would have to be F major: ``` 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 1 F G A Bb C D E F G A Bb C D E F * * * * ``` And that is how to make a C7 chord. You said earlier that you add an A#, which is correct, although it is better to call it Bb because then it can't be confused with the A natural. For example, if you had a C7add13 chord (a C7 chord with a 13th added above it) then it would contain the notes C, E, G, Bb, A. If you called the Bb an A# then there would be two As, one a natural, and one a sharp, which could cause a few headaches!
 Skold 5 Apr 2008 12:58 | Quote Joined: 14 Mar 2008United States Karma: 3 Ok, I think I'm understanding it a bit now.