what is this chord named?

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dweezil 9
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Good evening, just a quick question tonite. If i'm playing a G fifth (G, D, G) and then flatten the octave by a semi tone (G, D, F#), am I diminishing the chord?

A little rusty on the theory it may seem, thanks in advance!
seljer
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nope, you're not flatting the octave but adding a major 7th into it

if you'd flatted the fifth and added a minor third you'd have a diminished chord


G, D, F#
I'd probably call it a Gmaj7 but its missing the the third (which is probably a problem), another option would be D/G (a D major chord, D F# A with a G as the bass note)
dweezil 9
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hey thanks a lot for your quick reply and help!
VaiEvo
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No it's not a diminished chord, diminished chords are root-fifth-octave with a flattened fifth (example: G Magor is G-D-G, G diminished is G-C#-D. The beginning of Purple Haze is a diminished chord, Bb Diminished).

What you're playing, I don't think that's Gmaj7. A maj7 chord uses a flat-7, so it would be G-D-F instead of G-D-F#. What you're playing I don't think technically has a name guitar-wise, maybe theory-wise. I personally love that chord, I've based songs off of the root-fifth-flat octave chord, it's beautiful. It MIGHT be a sus chord, but I don't think so.

But I know what you're talking about.
seljer
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VaiEvo wrote: What you're playing, I don't think that's Gmaj7. A maj7 chord uses a flat-7, so it would be G-D-F instead of G-D-F#. What you're playing I don't think technically has a name guitar-wise, maybe theory-wise. I personally love that chord, I've based songs off of the root-fifth-flat octave chord, it's beautiful. It MIGHT be a sus chord, but I don't think so.

But I know what you're talking about.
maj7 is built off the first step of the major scale, so it has the root, major third, fifth and major seventh
(Gmaj7 - G B D F#)

a regular 7 chord, which is also know as dominant seventh is built off V note of the major scale and it has the minor seventh which gives it that dominant sound
(G7 - G B D F)
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Ricardo
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notes in music are first defined by their intervalic relationships, and don't get to be called "chords" until you have first determined the root or tonic, the third be it major or minor, and the 5th, either perfect, diminished or augmented. Of course more intervals will change the name of the "chord" from there, but without the minimum of those 3 elements, you don't define groups of intervals as "chords".

"Power chord" is a sort of missnomer because it is just a root, 5th, and octave. GDG. In chord charts they call it "G5". GDA is stacked 5ths. In chord charts you would see "G5add9" or "Gsus2" etc. So a group of intervals like GDF# could be "Gmaj7(no3rd)". Without the third, there is no "chord quality" so you just have the intervals as they relate to the lowest one, G. Root, 5th, major 7th. That is all you can say about it without more info. Context of the song is important. Notes in the melody, the overall key, other chords, etc as to the best way to describe it "theoretically".

One more thing, "diminishing" or "augmenting" usually is a desription of 5th or 4th intervals (sometimes 7th). So, from the point of view of D in your example, you are "diminishing the 4th". D-G, vs D-Gb. That is theoretical thing to do, since you won't find a key signature with those two notes. You find D-F#, but that is a major third not a diminished 4th. In the case of G-D, you have a 5th. G-Db is diminshed 5th. G-C# is augmented 4th. See the importance of correct spelling in context? G-D# is considerd augmented 5th and has very different implications from G-Eb, the minor 6th. Context and spelling tells you if your "diminishing" or "augmenting" anything. For the record, The diminished 7th interval from G is called Fb. :wink:

Ricardo
VaiEvo
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seljer wrote:maj7 is built off the first step of the major scale, so it has the root, major third, fifth and major seventh
(Gmaj7 - G B D F#)

a regular 7 chord, which is also know as dominant seventh is built off V note of the major scale and it has the minor seventh which gives it that dominant sound
(G7 - G B D F)
okay then that's what I was talking about. I wasn't sure if there was a difference between dominant 7 and maj7, I was thinking you were referring to dominant seventh chords.
Ricardo wrote:notes in music are first defined by their intervalic relationships, and don't get to be called "chords" until you have first determined the root or tonic, the third be it major or minor, and the 5th, either perfect, diminished or augmented. Of course more intervals will change the name of the "chord" from there, but without the minimum of those 3 elements, you don't define groups of intervals as "chords".

"Power chord" is a sort of missnomer because it is just a root, 5th, and octave. GDG. In chord charts they call it "G5". GDA is stacked 5ths. In chord charts you would see "G5add9" or "Gsus2" etc. So a group of intervals like GDF# could be "Gmaj7(no3rd)". Without the third, there is no "chord quality" so you just have the intervals as they relate to the lowest one, G. Root, 5th, major 7th. That is all you can say about it without more info. Context of the song is important. Notes in the melody, the overall key, other chords, etc as to the best way to describe it "theoretically".

One more thing, "diminishing" or "augmenting" usually is a desription of 5th or 4th intervals (sometimes 7th). So, from the point of view of D in your example, you are "diminishing the 4th". D-G, vs D-Gb. That is theoretical thing to do, since you won't find a key signature with those two notes. You find D-F#, but that is a major third not a diminished 4th. In the case of G-D, you have a 5th. G-Db is diminshed 5th. G-C# is augmented 4th. See the importance of correct spelling in context? G-D# is considerd augmented 5th and has very different implications from G-Eb, the minor 6th. Context and spelling tells you if your "diminishing" or "augmenting" anything. For the record, The diminished 7th interval from G is called Fb.

Ricardo
That's a very in-depth musical theory explanation (sadly, I understood it). Thanks for correcting me Ricardo. He is, in fact, correct, except for the last sentence (the diminished 7th interval is F not Fb, unless you're talking about minor scales and chords, then it's Fb.)

But before I turn this into a theory battle, the "chord" (as Ricardo so nicely pointed out) is used in lots of places. Listen to "Under the Bridge" by the Red Hot Chili Peppers, there's an Emaj7 in there between verses and between verse and chorus.
arpeggio_owen
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long story short, if you want to diminish a chord, you need to flatten the 5.
bumfluff
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A diminished chord is a MINOR chord with a flat 5th. The intervals between the 1st to the second note is a minor 3rd (3 semitones up) and the interval between the 3rd and the 5th note is ALSO a minor 3rd, this gives the chord it's sound.
tenstrings
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A diminished chord has four notes in it based on stacked minor third intervals: R b3 b5 6 (R)

If it doesn't have the 6th degree, it's just a minor-flat 5.

J
seljer
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that major 6th is not a major 6th but a diminished 7th

going from b5 to 6 is a augmented second
going from b5 to bb7 is a minor third (as the diminished chords are are bunch of stacked minor thirds....)

enharmonic intervals ;)


no idea about the minor flat fifth thing.... in theory classes they taught us that 1 b3 b5 was the diminished triad (found on the vii step of the major scale)
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Ricardo
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He is, in fact, correct, except for the last sentence (the diminished 7th interval is F not Fb, unless you're talking about minor scales and chords, then it's Fb.)
Regardless if you are talking about "minor scales and chords", the intervals from G to whatever have certain names, based on the spelling.

G-G octave
G-Gb or G# is "theoretical" interval and a sign that you miss spelled something.
G-F# is a MAJOR 7th
G-F is a MINOR 7th
G-Fb is a DIMINISHED 7th
G-E is a MAJOR 6th

Again, that is why spelling is important. You dont' "diminish the chord" by going from F to E, relative to G. But you would be diminishing a chord if you went from F natural to F flat. Understand the difference?

Big part of the confusion about the term "diminished" is the chord itself. A A diminished triad is G Bb Db. But when you use diminished chords in music there is an important distinction when you add the 7th. GBbDbF, is called "half diminished" and GBbDbFb is called "fully diminished". Often people confusingly think that the Fb should be spelled "E", but that is the whole point of spelling the chord and making it "fully" diminished. G diminished 7 spelled that way, implies the key of Abminor, or that key signature. If you used E instead of Fb to spell your chord, you imply the key of F minor.

In jazz and other music, they make it easier by calling a "fully diminshed" chord a "diminshed7" and the half diminished chord "Minor7 flat 5". That way the interval relationships are very clear.

Example: The ii7 chord in a minor key, using harmonic minor to construct the chord scale, would be always spelled half diminished. The vii7 chord would be FULLY diminished.

In Aminor, ABCDEFG# is the scale, you have the ii chord BDFA. Half diminished. the vii chord is G#BDF, fully diminished. Some folks will think, in the same key, of the chord BDFAb, as "fully diminished" ii chord. But it is a miss spelling, because all it is, is an inversion of the G# chord. Same thing will happen with the other notes in the chord, D and F.

Ricardo
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