Piano Root Position Minor Chords

pianoOnce you have learned your major chords you will want to tackle you root position minor chords. There are twelve minor chords so you could take one chord a week and have all of these memorized in 12 week. If you are more ambitions do three chords a week and you will have them all memorized in 4 weeks. The amount of time it takes you to memorize them doesn’t really matter as long as you are working towards that goal.

That sounds easy enough but you may be wondering what does “piano root position minor chords” mean anyway? Root position means that the lowest note of the chord that you are playing is the root. There are three notes that make up these chords so any of those three chords could be the root but in root position it will be the root, which is also the name of the chord. For example if you are playing a C minor chord, the root is C. So the lowest note you are playing is  a C. The next note we play after the root is a third, but a minor third this time. A minor third is 1 1/2 steps from the root. The next note we play after that is the perfect fifth. The fifth would be 2 whole steps from the minor third, or 3 1/2 steps from the root. So you notes for a C minor chord would be C – Eb – G

When comparing a major chord and minor chord the note that is different is the third. The third in a minor chord is 1/2 step lower than the third of a major chord. Lets compare C major and C minor;

C – E   – G  (major chord)

C – Eb – G  (minor chord)

If you are still having trouble with you intervals you could check out this great tutorial on them.

Here is a recap of how the intervals work in the minor chord
  • Root to Minor 3rd = one and one half steps (ex. C to Eb, F to Ab, G to Bb, etc)
  • Root to Perfect 5th = three and one half whole steps (ex. C to G, F to C, G to D, etc)
  • Minor 3rd to Perfect 5th = two whole steps (ex. Eb to G, Ab to C, Bb to D, etc)

Hope you are enjoying your major and minor chords. Feel free to share this pdf with anyone you like.

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