Music Theory For Bass – Chords In A Major Key

2017-10-26T15:45:21+00:00January 18th, 2014|Categories: Music Theory For Bass Guitar|9 Comments

The lesson shows you how to construct chords from each degree of the major scale so you can create your own chord progressions and understand why certain chords have particular qualities.

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  1. Karan Sambhoo November 18, 2015 at 12:53 am - Reply

    Thank you so much for all these lessons buddy, they are really great!! 🙂

  2. Matthew Foss June 27, 2016 at 9:36 pm - Reply

    I want to say thanks for all the work you do as well as ask a question. At the end when you are doing your bass line the notes that are fills are from the seven chords and triads that we went over in the lesson right?

    • Mark Smith June 28, 2016 at 7:09 pm - Reply

      Hi there. Yes, the final example uses notes from the 7th chords and triads.

  3. Grant Pureveen December 14, 2016 at 12:57 pm - Reply

    Hi Mark

    Am I correct in assuming with all these chord constructions that basically the number of semi tone spaces from the root note in the scale is key to understanding all of this ? From what i can make out a Major 2nd is two semi tones from the root , The first third from the root is four semi tones if it is a major third and if its minor it is three semi tones , the perfect 4th is five semi tones and the perfect 5th seven semi tones , Major seventh is eleven semi tones . So if I consider consider the C major scale starting and the 2nd degree D and work the chords by stacking thirds I get D F A C if add the 7th . If i then count the semi tones to each note from the root I get D to F (Three semi tones) so its minor , If it was major it would need to be 4 semi tones . D to A (Seven semi tones ) this makes it a perfect fifth , if it was eight it would be Augmented or six it would be diminished . D to C ( eleven semitones ) making it a major seventh , if it where ten semitones it would be a minor and twelve you are back at the octave . Am i understanding this correctly ? My other question is if you consider the C Major scale starting with C 8th fret on teh E string , how do you go about constructing a chord by stacking 3rds when you get to the 7th degree B and have run out of strings ?


  4. Grant Pureveen December 14, 2016 at 5:33 pm - Reply

    Hi Mark

    I am trying to figure out how you make a F major chord by barring the 13th Fret and I see your fingers on the A note of the G string and the F note on the D string . Your lesson showed that an F major chord is made up of notes F A C so I am confused to how this works ? Would a F major chord not be A on the 14th fret of the G string , F on the 15th fret of the D string and C 15th fret on the A string ? I see you do the same for the G major chord . Can you explain ? Thanks Mark .

  5. John Odell December 30, 2016 at 7:44 pm - Reply

    Wow… Boom… lightbulb just went on. I feel like a lot of the holes in the Swiss cheese of my musical theory knowledge base just got filled. I am going to go back to the chord construction lesson again and re go over the eight seventh chord types. Holy moly… Why did this take so long to stick in my head.

    Thank you so much Mark for your progressive music theory approach. I have been able to read chords from guitarist, and have been playing lines based on ear ok, but this will really open up my playing and give me a lot more confidence to be able to experiment and play a lot more interesting lines without being afraid of going out of key or loosing the groove.

    Thanks again!!

  6. Rudy Perdomo July 16, 2017 at 1:12 am - Reply

    Great video but I have one question. Do we disregard the octave when we skip degrees?

  7. Rudy Perdomo July 16, 2017 at 1:21 am - Reply

    Never mind I got it know I am just really tired and i am not paying much attention to what I am doing

  8. Rudy Perdomo July 16, 2017 at 1:24 am - Reply

    When we get to the octave do I count the octave and the tonic as one?

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