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Chord Tone/Arpeggio Lesson #2, Part 1

Kevin Freeby

Chord Tone/Arpeggio Lesson #2, Part 1…

Now that we have had the official introduction to the Triads (see lesson #1), I have included the remaining 3 triad arpeggios for this lesson.

One extremely important thing to keep in mind with this information, as well as with any other material that we will be learning, is that there is a huge difference between understanding a piece of information and having it performance ready.

One of the many things that I’ve found in my 15 years of teaching is that often when a student recognizes a pattern in any information, or sees a pattern in the teaching method, they can confuse this understanding of information with the ability to physically perform the material in a musical context. Sometimes we need to remind ourselves that the goal is to make music, and that without musical context, any information, including the material here simply becomes useless words on a page.

An easy way to test yourself to make sure that you are not falling victim to this mindset (and yes it is more of a mindset then anything else) is to pick up your bass and try to recall the last thing that you worked on. Since the last thing we worked on together was the Major Triad, we will use that as our example. If when you pick up your bass you can recall a major triad instantly, anywhere on the neck, with any fingering, without the slightest hesitation, then congratulations, you truly know your major triad and we can move on. If this is not the case, it’s not a huge deal, it just means that you need to spend a bit more time working on this material and then we can get started on what follows.

Following the major triad is the Minor Triad,  and just like with its major counterpart, the minor triad pairs up with its corresponding minor chord. In other words, if a guitar/piano player tells you that they are playing a C Minor Chord then a Minor Triad would be the perfect choice.  If they tell you that they are playing a B flat Minor Chord then a B flat Minor Triad would work great. Remember, my goal is to give you the information; the artistry of how the information is played is up to you. And yes, just like with our last lesson, there are more advanced applications and I promise that we will get to them.  But, first we we need get that foundation nice and strong, then we can start to build on top of it.

Click to download Minor Triad (Root Position Only)

C Minor Triad

-Comprised of the notes C,Eb,G
-Comprised of the intervals 1,b3,5
-Corresponds with the C Minor Chord
-Written as “Cmin, C-, Cm” on chord chart

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