The Big Six Core Chords - Fmaj7, Four Voicings

Your level I core, 4-part "Jazz" chords.

Published: Feb 6, 2013 Updated: Jan 4, 2016 • Visitors: 2 • Page Views: 1

ukulele Subjects: chordsjazzcore

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The Big Six Core Chords, Level I - Fmaj7, four voicings. Fmaj7 is a 1 3 5 7 of the major scale, based on the root of the chord.

These are the four Fmaj7 chord voicings that will be used for deriving other major seventh derived chords. There are far too many chord shapes to memorize thousands of shapes.


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Why Do Some Chords Not Sound Right?

A very good question and very easy to answer and demonstrate. The next time your near a piano play any two adjacent white keys white keys without any black key between. Your either playing E and F or B and C. The interval between these adjacent pair of notes is a minor second or one half step apart and one of the most dissonant intervals in music. I call it the secret agent interval - very mysterious and can't be ignored. Not play one of the notes an octave higher of lower and you'll hear that it's not as bad.

So anytime there is a note that is one half step or a minor second above or below any note in the chord there will be dissonance. Dissonance is good but not not in this case of the maj7 chord and the first voicing of the Fmaj7 in this lesson - the F on string three is one half step higher then the E on string two fret one.

By know the notes of a chord and where they are in relationship to each other can help avoid this problem before you play a chord that has the potential for this minor second dissonance.

The maj7 chord is one of your Big Six core chords and Fmaj7 is the notes: F A C E. Actually pretty easy one to memorize as it a real word that we all know and is the spaces of the five line music staff in the treble or G clef. When the notes of the chord are shown on standard music notation you can easily see where the dissonance happens. Here are the four chords shown in both high and log G, C tuning.

Notice that only one of the low G, C tuning voicings has the minor second interval problem. Where as three of the high G, C tuning voicings has the minor second interval problem.

Ukulele players using both a low or high G, C tuning will typically use this alternate voicing for first Fmaj7 voicing.

Voice Leading

When the first maj7 voicing, in this case the Fmaj7 above is properly set up with voice leading - voice leading is that common tones between chords remain and non-common tones move to closet note of the next chord - is actually sounds pretty nice. Try this Gmy C7 to Fmaj7 and hear just how sweet it sounds.

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