‘How to Play Major Chords on a Keyboard’ is one of basic objects that Beginners like to know. In fact, ‘How to Play Major Chords on a Keyboard’  is one of the fundamental questions in piano learning or playing.

Chords are essential in order to make music attractive as well as appealing. Among the most basic and important things that every pianist have to learn, ‘How to Play Major Chords on a Keyboard’ is one of them. It is one of the vital points, in deed. Learning ‘How to Play Major Chords on a Keyboard’ is not a difficult, rather, it is easier   to learn!

This article is intended to show the rules for beginners, and then, how to practice the rules. Moreover, it is known to all that practice makes one perfect.

For better understanding , this article is divided into 3 main divisions, namely,  part- 1, chord basics ; part- 2, playing chords; part-3, practicing

 

PART – 1

 

CHORD BASICS

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A CHORD  : A chord is three or more notes. Complex chords may have many notes, but a minimum of three goes well for beginners.

Hence, the chords, which are discussed here, all of them  are composed of three notes- a root, a third and a fifth.

 

Root Of The Chord:

Each major chord is built on a note, which is called as the TONIC, or root of the chord. This is the note, after which the chord is named . This will be the lowest note in the chord.

  • For a C major chord, C is the tonic. It will be the bottom note of the beginner’s chord.
  • Beginners have to play the tonic note with their thumb in the right hand, or with the pinkie or Little finger of left hand.

 

The Major Third:

The second note in a major chord is termed as the major third. This major third cord provides the chord its character. It will be four semitones, or half-steps, above the root. The Major Third is called so because when a pianist plays a scale in that key, it will be the third note that the pianist hit.

  • For a C major chord, E is the third. It is four half steps above C. beginners, like other pianist can count them on their piano (C#, D, D#, E).
  • Beginners will play the third with their middle finger, regardless of which hand they are using.
  • It is important for beginners to aim playing the root and the third together, this is useful to get a sense of how that interval is assumed to sound.

 

The Fifth:

The fifth is called as the top note in a major chord. While playing a scale it is the fifth note, which the pianists hit. It anchors the chord and makes it complete. However, this is seven semi-tones above the root.

  • For a C major chord, G is the fifth.
  • Beginners can count the seven semi-tones up from the root on their piano. (C#, D, D#, E, F, F#, G.)
  • Pianists play the fifth with their Little finger in their right hand, or with the thumb in their left.

 

Ways to Spell A Chord:

Beginners should understand that there are at least two ways to spell a chord.

All the notes may be written at least two different ways. As for example, both Eb and D# is the same note. That is, an Eb major chord would sound alike the D# major chord.

Beginners should know that-

  • The notes Eb, G, Bb generate an Eb chord. The notes D#, F𝄪 (F##), A# produce a D# Major chord, which sounds just the same as an Eb chord.
  • Enharmonic Equivalents: The two chords are called enharmonic equivalents because they sound identically similar, although they are written in a different way.
  • The article presents only the most common notation of a major chord.

 

Proper Hand and Finger Position:

For beginners it is of great use to review Proper Hand Position, as, in order to play a piece of piano music efficiently as well as pleasantly, beginners need to use the appropriate hand position, without fail: even while practicing chords, they have to ensure Proper Hand Position .

 

  • Beginners have to keep their fingers tall and curved, as if they are diving into the keys. It is important to use the natural curve of fingers.
  • Beginners have to use the weight of their arms rather than the strength of  their fingers to push on the keys.
  • Beginners have to play on the tips of their fingers, including the pinkie or the little finger and the thumb .
  • Beginners should conscious to keep their fingernails trimmed.

 

 

 

 PART – 2

PLAYING CHORDS

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THREE FINGERS:

Three fingers are used while playing chords.

Beginners should to notice that they will use only fingers 1, 3 and 5 i.e. thumb, middle, pinkie (the little finger) to play the three notes of each chord. The index and ring fingers may rest on, but not press down any keys.

  • Beginners have to notice that their fingers advance one half-step i.e. one key up the keyboard each time they change chords.

 

PLAYING  C MAJOR:

Beginners should follow the guidline to Play C Major. The three notes will be C, E, G.

Note that,

C = tonic (0),

E = major third (4 semi-tones), and

G = fifth (7 semi-tones).

Right hand: Right hand fingering will place the thumb on C, middle finger on E and pinkie on G.

Left hand: Left hand fingering will place  Pinkie on C,

Middle finger on E, and Thumb on G.

 

PLAYING  DB   MAJOR

The three notes will be Db, F, Ab.

Note that , Db = tonic (0),

F = major third (4 semi-tones),

Ab = fifth (7 semi-tones).

The enharmonic equivalent of this chord is C# Major. Make out that Db may also be noted as C#. F can also be written in music as E#. Ab can also be written as G#. The notes that beginners play will be the same whether it is written as Db Major or C# Major.

  • Right hand fingering will place Beginners thumb on Db,  middle finger on F and their Little finger on Ab.
  • Left hand fingering will place beginner’s Little finger on Db,  middle finger on F and the thumb on Ab.

 

PLAYING   D   MAJOR:

Here, the three notes will be D, F#, A. Beginners should learn by heart that D = tonic (0), F# = major third (4 semi-tones), A = fifth (7 semi-tones).

  • Right hand fingering will place beginners’ thumb on D,  middle finger on F# and the pinkie on A.
  • Left hand fingering will place beginners’ pinkie on D,  middle finger on F# and the thumb on A.

 

PLAYING  EB MAJOR

Here, the three notes are Eb, G, Bb. Beginners have to memorize that

Eb = tonic (0),

G = major third (4 semi-tones),

Bb = fifth (7 semi-tones).

Right hand fingering will place beginners’ thumb on Eb,  middle finger on G and the little finger   on Bb.

 

  • Left hand fingering will place beginners’ little finger on Eb, middle finger on G and the thumb on Bb.

 

 

PLAYING  E MAJOR:

The three notes will be E, G#, B. note that, E = tonic (0), G# = major third (4 semi-tones), B = fifth (7 semi-tones).

  • Right hand fingering will place beginners’ thumb on E,  middle finger on G# and your pinkie on B.
  • Left hand fingering will place beginners’ pinkie on E, middle finger on G# and the thumb on B.

 

Playing  F Major:

 Here,  the three notes will be F, A, C.

Memorize that-

F = tonic (0), A = major third (4 semi-tones), C = fifth (7 semi-tones).

  • Right hand fingering will place beginners’ thumb on F, middle finger on A and the little finger on C.
  • Left hand fingering will place beginners’ pinkie on F, middle finger on A and the thumb on C.

 

 

PLAYING F# MAJOR

Whileplaying F# Major, the three notes will be F#, A#, C#.

Note that-

F# = tonic (0),

A# = major third (4 semi-tones),

C# = fifth (7 semi-tones).

The enharmonic equivalent of this chord is Gb Major that will be written as Gb, Bb, Db.

It is important to mark here that F# can also be written as Gb. A# can also be written as Bb. C# can also be written as Db. Hence, the notes beginners play to make a major chord, which is the same in F# Major and Gb Major.

  • Right hand fingering will place the thumb on F#, the middle finger on A# and the pinkie on C#.

Left hand fingering will place the pinkie on F#, the middle finger on A# and the thumb on C#.

 

PLAYING  G  MAJOR

The three notes will be G, B, D. Memorize, G = tonic (0), B = major third (4 semi-tones), D = fifth (7 semi-tones).

  • Right hand fingering will place the thumb on G, the middle finger on B and the pinkie on D.
  • Left hand fingering will place beginners’ pinkie on G, the middle finger on B and the thumb on D.

 

 

PLAYING  AB   MAJOR.

The three notes will be Ab, C, Eb.

Keep in mind that-

Ab = tonic (0),

C = major third (4 semi-tones),

Eb = fifth (7 semi-tones).

The enharmonic equivalent of this chord is G# Major which will be written as G#, B#, D#.

beginners’ have to note that-

Ab can also be written as G#.

C can also be written as B#.

Eb can also be written as D#.

The notes you play to make a major chord will be the same for Ab Major and G# major, even though , they will be noted in a different way

  • Right hand fingering will place beginners’ thumb on Ab, the middle on C and the pinkie on Eb.
  • Left hand fingering will place beginners’ little finger on Ab, middle finger on C and the thumb on Eb.

 

 

PLAYING  A MAJOR.

Here, the three notes will be A, C#, E.

Beginners’ have to remember-

A = tonic (0),

C# = major third (4 semi-tones),

E = fifth (7 semi-tones).

  • Right hand fingering will place beginners’ thumb on A, the middle finger on C# and the little finger on E.
  • Left hand fingering will place beginners’ pinkie on A, the middle finger on C# and the thumb on E.

 

PLAYING Bb MAJOR

The three notes will be Bb, D, F. Beginners’ have to remember-

Bb = tonic (0),

D = major third (4 semi-tones),

F = fifth (7 semi-tones).

  • Right hand fingering will place the thumb on Bb, the middle finger on D and the little finger on F.
  • Left hand fingering will place the little finger on Bb, the middle finger on D, and the thumb on F.

 

 

PLAYING   B    MAJOR

The three notes will be B, D#, F#. Beginners’ have to remember-

B = tonic (0),

D# = major third (4 semi-tones),

F# = fifth (7 semi-tones).

  • Right hand fingering will place the thumb on B, the middle finger on D# and the little finger on F#.
  • Left hand fingering will place the little finger on B, the middle finger on D# and the thumb on F#.

 

PART- 3

PRACTICING

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Practice Playing All Three Notes At Once:

Beginners have to practice playing all three notes simultaneously. When beginners  feel comfortable playing each chord individually,  they have to try skipping up the scale with each major chord. Starting will be with a C major chord, then have to play a Db major, then D major and so on.

  • Beginners have to begin by doing this exercise with only single hand. When they achieve confident, they have to  play both hands simultaneously.
  • Beginners have to listen for false notes. The ratio between the notes should always keep on the same, so if one chord suddenly unexpectedly sounds dissimilar, check that whether the correct notes are being hitting.

 

ARPEGGIOS:

An arpeggio means each note is struck in sequence from lowest to highest. To play a C Major arpeggio with Beginners right hand, Beginners have to strike the C with the thumb and release. Beginners have to Strike E with middle finger and release and strike G with the pinkie and release.

  • After mastered this motion, beginners have to try to make it fluid rather than choppy and have to strike and release each note quickly, so there is hardly any time between notes.

 

 

 

Now, a few guiding lines for beginners on how to Practice Playing The Major Chords In Different Inversions are as follows:

Beginners have to Practice playing the major chords in different inversions. Inversions of a chord use the same notes, but place a different note on the bottom. As for example, a C major chord is C, E, G. The first inversion of the C-major chord is E, G, C. The second inversion is G, C, E.

  • Beginners must ensure it by making a major chord with every note on the scale, in every inversion.

 

 

SHEET MUSIC AND THE CHORDS:

We are at the point to end the article-Beginners guide On How to Play Major Chords on a Keyboard.

Before ending a few lines on Sheet Music And The Chords.

Sheet music and the Chords:

After having been  familiar with how to construct and play a chord, beginners have to find a piece of music that has chords written . At this time, finally,    beginners should to ensure that they can identify major chords that they have practiced.

Beginners guide On How to Play Major Chords on a Keyboard is a helpful as well as practical wriiting for beginners. Following the guidlines one may achieve efficiency in playing PIANO.