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Down Up Dick
08-10-2014, 05:24 AM
Well, I just finished learning my 6 Chords, and I've just about got the Maj7s memorized. But, upon prechecking the minor7 chords, I find that they are the same as the 6 chords! 0000 is Am7, and it's also C6! Wha . . . ? 1111 is Bbm7 and also Eb6. 3324 is Eb7 and also F#6. I have enough trouble learning stuff and keeping it straight without puzzles. If I play 0000 I expect a C6, so how come I get a Am7? And how does it fit into the tune? I even checked another chord chart to see if the first one was incorrect, and it wasn't.

I got the yips trying to figure out Diminished Seventh Chords which are also lots the same. I finally gave up and play them as they are on the music or ignore them--done.

This Ukulele learning is bending my head. I'm really a newby when it comes to chords. When one fingers an F on a Flute or a Trumpet or a Tin Whistle, he gets an F.

I could use a little 'splaining . . .

ukantor
08-10-2014, 06:08 AM
Yeah, I noticed that, too. I'm a bit of a rebel, so when called upon to play Am7, I play C6 instead - and vice versa.

Nobody has complained, yet.

Rllink
08-10-2014, 06:27 AM
I've noticed that as well. I learned long ago that it is very hard to be logical in an illogical world, so I just accept it and move on. You can't change it.

Down Up Dick
08-10-2014, 06:30 AM
Hey, you're both my kinda people. If ya can't figure it out, play a different tune! Right on!

KoaDependent
08-10-2014, 06:32 AM
Rather than think about it as finger shapes, look up what actual notes make up each chord. Maybe it'll be clearer then?

Down Up Dick
08-10-2014, 06:48 AM
It's the same darned notes. That's why it doesn't make sense. OOOO is OOOO! The only way one can change it is to change his jaw position and close one eye!

Rllink
08-10-2014, 06:56 AM
It's the same darned notes. That's why it doesn't make sense. OOOO is OOOO! The only way one can change it is to change his jaw position and close one eye!HaHa, that was funny. I'm going to try that. :-)

ksiegel
08-10-2014, 07:09 AM
With only 2 octaves and 4 strings, the ukulele "borrows" chord names all over the place.

Because 2 chords can have the same notes in them, they can be played the same with 2 (or more) different names. The addition of other notes on a guitar can further clarify the chord name.

Please take this with a grain of salt, as I neither read music nor do I have perfect pitch. My knowledge of theory is rudimentary at best, and is based on playing guitar (mediocre at best) for nearly 40 years, and paying attention to people who play Ukulele in the almost 3 years I've been playing. One of my observations is that those players with a Jazz background have a very clear handle on why, as many of them play all over the fretboard. (Take a workshop - any workshop - with Sarah Maisel, for example. In 45 minutes, you will become a better player!)

One of the quandaries you'll see is the D7 vs. Hawaiian D7 chord - 3222 vs 0202 (I think I have that right... Barred 2nd fret, and 3rd fret on A string vs. 2nd fret on G and E, open C and A). The notes in the standard form are ADF#C, while the Hawaiian form is ACF#A - the only difference, note-wise is the lack of a D in the Hawaiian form (And how odd that the root of the chord isn't present in that chord!). They are both D7, yet the appropriateness of the form depends on what you are playing, what chord you are shifting from/to, and what you want the overall sound to be.

I know that the G7 chord is usually taught as 2120, and a C is 3000. I use those sometimes. I find, however, I'm more apt to play the 2nd position chords 5354 and 3345 instead - but that depends entirely on the song. I just like the sound better, and - as Ken Middleton pointed out in a workshop at the 2013 Wine Country Ukulele Festival, when one person plays a 1st position chord, and another plays the 2nd position version of that same chord, it really enhances the sound.

Have I muddied the waters enough? Want to clarify things? Get a copy of Fretboard Roadmaps.


[indent[-Kurt[/indent]

peaceweaver3
08-10-2014, 07:19 AM
Some call naming chords, notes, and intervals "musical spelling." It's a way for the mind, and other musicians, to understand and name what is heard, and to pass it on to others. It's the same thing in writing - most of us just have a better grasp on that, simply because we're used to it. "See" sounds like "C," which sounds like "Sea," but they're all spelled differently. Same with C6 and Am7. You can call it what you want amongst yourself. But at times, others may expect you to spell musical figures correctly.

That's about the best explanation I can come up with, and who knows, it may still be as clear as mud. :o

Down Up Dick
08-10-2014, 07:32 AM
Yes you have, ksiegel; both chords are perzactly the same--same notes--same finger position--same strings . . .! And here's yet another piece that doesn't fit this mind bender. The 6 and Maj7 Chords are major chord families, and, of course, the minor seventh chords are MINOR! Yet, (repositioning jaw) they're all played (closing one eye) THE SAME! "It Is A Puzzlement!"

Down Up Dick
08-10-2014, 07:43 AM
Peaceweaver3, I don't think we're talking about the name of these chords. We could call them Pete and Jim and Tom or whatever. We're really talking about the SOUND of the chords. If one plays all four strings open, he gets a Pete Chord, and, if he plays the same chord again, will he get a Jim or Tom Chord?

Wicked
08-10-2014, 11:47 AM
Let’s look at an example….

The C Major chord is C-E-G (the first, third and fifth notes of the C major scale). If we add the sixth note of the scale (A), then we have C6 (C-E-G-A).

The A minor chord is A-C-E (the first, third and fifth notes of the natural A minor scale). If we add the seventh note of the scale (G), then we have Am7 (A-C-E-G).

Same notes, just stacked differently. What you call it (C6 or Am7) depends on the harmonic context.

Down Up Dick
08-10-2014, 12:01 PM
Yes Wicked, but one is not playing the notes one at a time (i. e. A, C, E, G, vs. C, E, G, A). One is playing them both GCEA. So, of course, both strums will sound exactly the same. The ACEG is minor, but will it sound minor? Only if one believes it does and clicks his heels three times.

CeeJay
08-10-2014, 12:07 PM
Gb is the same note as F#...different names ..same note ...as are G# / A b A # / Bb C#/Db D#/Eb......these are all black notes on a piano keyboard and known as Enharmonic one note sound ...two names or "spellings"......It all depends what scale or key they are written in.

The chords you refer to are similar. Same shape, different names ...but same sounds ....there are loads of others ......best bet is this "rocks are hard ,water is wet"
just accept it and move on really ....and look on the bright side ...you learn one chord shape you have a twofer .......:D

Wicked 's reply sounds right but so does yours and that is what music is about...if it sounds right it is............

Rllink
08-10-2014, 12:37 PM
I realize that music theory is very helpful when one is playing music, even on the ukulele, and I really wish that I had a more knowledge and understanding of it. Every piece of knowledge I can pick up makes me a better ukulele player, but sadly, I can not wait to absorb it all before I embark on my journey. So for the time being anyway, I'm just going with what I have, and pretending the rest is magic, and just playing whatever comes up when it comes up, without very much understanding of the why. I'm a very accepting person. I'm learning a little along the way though, and that is nice. But the magic is working pretty good as well.

Down Up Dick
08-10-2014, 01:03 PM
CeeJay, you are absolutely correct. I was gonna tell Wicked that she (must be a woman with a name like that) came the closest to having it right (after me). But it's really stupid. Why have a minor that dosen't sound particularly minor? So I have come to the same conclusion that Rllink, and you both did. It doesn't make much sense, so just get over it. I'm not even gonna bother learning minor (ha!) 7th chords. I really enjoyed this thread though.

PereBourik
08-10-2014, 01:03 PM
What do you mean, ?...pretending the rest is magic?"

Isn't it all magic? Works that way for me.

Rllink
08-10-2014, 01:15 PM
What do you mean, ?...pretending the rest is magic?"

Isn't it all magic? Works that way for me.Absolutely.

ksiegel
08-10-2014, 03:03 PM
The A minor chord is A-C-E (the first, third and fifth notes of the natural A minor scale). If we add the seventh note of the scale (G), then we have Am7 (A-C-E-G).



Except that I play the Am7 using the notes A-C-F#-G (0302).

I picked up that shape when I played the Em7 chord on guitar (030220)

I think basically, the answer to Dick's question is that the name of the chord varies based on key and progression. There are pieces of music that make note of the Gb chord, as well as the G# chord. There are other pieces that refer to the F# chord and the Ab chord. And they are, of course, the same notes.

As to why some chords are called minor chords, but hav the same shapes and notes as major or 6th chords, it all depends on the way that the music is written - where it is coming from, and where it is going to.


-Kurt

bunnyf
08-10-2014, 03:40 PM
Wicked summed it up succinctly and well. It's a matter of context.

Wicked
08-10-2014, 04:11 PM
CeeJay, you are absolutely correct. I was gonna tell Wicked that she (must be a woman with a name like that) came the closest to having it right (after me). But it's really stupid. Why have a minor that dosen't sound particularly minor? So I have come to the same conclusion that Rllink, and you both did. It doesn't make much sense, so just get over it. I'm not even gonna bother learning minor (ha!) 7th chords. I really enjoyed this thread though.

A. Why would the word "wicked" have a gender?
B. There is no debate here.... C6 is the same chord as Am7. All 6 chords are the same as the m7 of their relative minor. That's just how it is.
C. It makes perfect sense.

Down Up Dick
08-10-2014, 04:35 PM
Well, Wicked: A. Wicked just does, and, to me, it's feminine. B. I'm not debating the names of the chords. I believe the chord chart. It's all the nonsense about them being two different sounds. If your instructor tells you to play C# and you play Db--IT'S THE SAME SOUND! So why have a C# chart and a Db chart. There's a better way to write the chord charts for both type chords. C. If it made perfect sense, we wouldn't be debating it. D. If you are a male and I have somehow insulted you, I'm sorry. I'm an old man and get excited easily.

Down Up Dick
08-10-2014, 04:42 PM
ubulele, I don't know what the heck you're talkin' about. I just skimmed it, but, watch yourself, you're gonna explode! I'll read it again, but it didn't seem to have a lot to do with the debate.

Wicked
08-10-2014, 05:18 PM
Well, Wicked: A. Wicked just does, and, to me, it's feminine. B. I'm not debating the names of the chords. I believe the chord chart. It's all the nonsense about them being two different sounds. If your instructor tells you to play C# and you play Db--IT'S THE SAME SOUND! So why have a C# chart and a Db chart. There's a better way to write the chord charts for both type chords. C. If it made perfect sense, we wouldn't be debating it. D. If you are a male and I have somehow insulted you, I'm sorry. I'm an old man and get excited easily.

The two chords absolutely sound the same... They are the same notes. It is where you use them that defines their major or minor quality.

acmespaceship
08-10-2014, 05:40 PM
ubulele, I don't know what the heck you're talkin' about. I just skimmed it, but, watch yourself, you're gonna explode! I'll read it again, but it didn't seem to have a lot to do with the debate.

You asked a question, you got answers. Music theory is a vast and complex topic. If you're not willing to read knowledgeable posts and would rather just skim, then you'll have to settle for the answer "just because." Trust us, the same fingerings make the same sounds, but in the context of a given song in a given key, the same chord can have different names. Because music. If you want to know why, then you'll have to learn something.

Down Up Dick
08-10-2014, 05:45 PM
Well. Wicked, without any doubt at all, you probably know more about chords than I do. I'm a self taught musician, and all my instruments have been wind instruments except keyboard which I don't play well. I started this raging debate to try to understand the "puzzlement", but then it got to be fun and very interesting to me. What I learned though was that both groups were the same yet different, and that was that--nyah-nyah-nyah. Since I mostly like to play folk music (all kinds), I probably won't run across minor seventh chords much anyway, and I can just skip them.

So thanks for the debate. You finished second right after me.

Down Up Dick
08-10-2014, 05:58 PM
Ahoy, acmespaceship, yes I did, and I did settle for just because. That's good enough in this case. I really enjoyed the debate, and I learned enough to satisfy curiosity. Music, at least to me, is not the life or death struggle it is to other folks. To me it's just mostly for fun.

And you're still hung up on the chord names. That's not what the debate was about.

Icelander53
08-10-2014, 06:55 PM
Yeah, I noticed that, too. I'm a bit of a rebel, so when called upon to play Am7, I play C6 instead - and vice versa.

Nobody has complained, yet.

That's the spirit.

Down Up Dick
08-10-2014, 07:28 PM
ubulele, I'm sorry if my comment to you before was insulting. I was just kidding'', and I appreciate that you're trying to help me. But your info is above my head to say the least. I'll read it and maybe learn something from it, but it's really a bit much. I'm an old man who just plays for fun these days. I had a ball earlier today playing hymns on my alto flute. Yesterday, I played Celtic Music on my Irish flute. I've been playing music all my life, but I haven't had much to do with chords. I can play lots of instruments, but my theory may be a bit weak. Anyway, I'll read your info over and see what I can get out of it. Thanks again for your help.

Pundabaya
08-10-2014, 10:48 PM
The thing about music theory is there's a lot of it, and much if it is completely optional. The other thing is its supposed to be helpful, but it isn't often explained very well to someone who's not versed in it.

xommen
08-11-2014, 12:42 AM
For anybody who want some more background in music theory, I can recommend this course. It is of course not uke specific, as it is music theory not uke theory ;).
https://www.coursera.org/course/musictheory
Oh and the good thing: it's free!

bunnyf
08-11-2014, 02:26 AM
Ubulele, I enjoyed your post. I'm a relative novice to music theory and did have to take my time, going slowly through the explanation but I did understand it. It is a complex subject and sometimes a discussion can get beyond my ability to understand, given my limited background but I did get a better understanding of chord formation. Early on, I too was curious when I stumbled on two identical fingerings having different names and with my most rudimentary understanding of music theory, I wrote it off to the fact that with just 4 strings and limited reach one can only make a finite number of fingerings and in varying keys, some might turn out to be the same and that you will call them one name rather than the other, depending which key the music is written in. Kind of like why we use the sharp notation or the flat...it depending on the key. Your explanation filled in a lot of the blanks.

If one asks a question, one should be prepared for some pretty knowledgable answers here on UU. Sometimes I have asked questions as a novice where the answer or solution to a problem was beyond my scope (like a repair or adjustment) and I needed to defer to a professional, but sometimes with the explanation folks gave, I could do something myself, if I carefully digested what they were saying to me. This discussion seems to follow on those lines. The answer was given by folks with superior knowledge of music theory and one either makes the effort to learn more and try to understand it or just accepts it as an issue better left for the professionals.

VegasGeorge
08-11-2014, 02:38 AM
Chords are defined by the intervals between the notes in them. The interesting thing about diminished 7th chords is that they are the only chords in which all the intervals are the same, minor 3rds stacked up on top of each other. So, logically, you can see that there are really only 3 diminished 7th cords, that is, diminished chords with different notes in them. That's because once you get to the third series of stacked minor thirds, you've covered all the notes in the chromatic scale, and going any further simply repeats combinations already played. All the diminished chords are simply inversions of one of the three. Once you see this symmetry, the mystery of diminished chords goes "poof," and you will be very comfortable with them.

Rllink
08-11-2014, 04:14 AM
Ubulele, I enjoyed your post. I'm a relative novice to music theory and did have to take my time, going slowly through the explanation but I did understand it. It is a complex subject and sometimes a discussion can get beyond my ability to understand, given my limited background but I did get a better understanding of chord formation. Early on, I too was curious when I stumbled on two identical fingerings having different names and with my most rudimentary understanding of music theory, I wrote it off to the fact that with just 4 strings and limited reach one can only make a finite number of fingerings and in varying keys, some might turn out to be the same and that you will call them one name rather than the other, depending which key the music is written in. Kind of like why we use the sharp notation or the flat...it depending on the key. Your explanation filled in a lot of the blanks.

If one asks a question, one should be prepared for some pretty knowledgable answers here on UU. Sometimes I have asked questions as a novice where the answer or solution to a problem was beyond my scope (like a repair or adjustment) and I needed to defer to a professional, but sometimes with the explanation folks gave, I could do something myself, if I carefully digested what they were saying to me. This discussion seems to follow on those lines. The answer was given by folks with superior knowledge of music theory and one either makes the effort to learn more and try to understand it or just accepts it as an issue better left for the professionals.Music theory it great and some people spend a lifetime learning and understanding it. But for me, music theory is like my approach to ukulele playing in general. I started playing the ukulele because I wanted to play songs. So I found an easy song, I think it was "You're Nothing but a Hound Dog", learned the chords, and started playing and singing it. All I needed was G,C7,and a D7. So then I found another song, and another, and another, and I added to my chord repertoire as needed. I think that after the first week, I knew enough chords to play a bunch of songs, which was probably a half dozen chords. So now I think I know twenty-five or thirty chords and I can play I don't know how many songs. But I guess the point I'm making is that I don't just learn chords. If I don't have a use for a chord, I don't need to learn it. I only learn what I need to do what I want to do, which is sing and play songs. So sometimes people start going on a big discourse on some music theory subject, and they lose me. Because I don't want to learn music theory, I want to learn enough music theory so that I can sing and play songs. If it isn't applicable to what I'm doing, I don't need to know it. Note however, I think a lot of the information in this thread has been useful, and I'm not talking about this thread specifically, but more in a general sense. But I think that often times people who are interested in music theory as an endeavor in itself, forget that many of us just want to play our ukes.

bunnyf
08-11-2014, 04:38 AM
Rllink, I have taken the same path as you. I just select a song I fancy, learn what I need to play and sing along and have a jolly time and naturally as time passes I get a bit better and know a bit more. Along the way a technique, theory, exercise or a bit of technical info peaks my curiousity and I read up, watch vids, practice. Sometimes one just doesn't want to go that deep into a particular area, that's why some of us are music majors and some of us are dentists.

Down Up Dick
08-11-2014, 04:58 AM
Well, Rllink, I couldn't possibly agree with you more. When I started out playing, I didn't even use tabs. I just used the sheet music and learned whatever chords I needed. I mostly wanted to sing; I could play tunes on my other instruments. I already knew plenty of theory, though not much about chords. But some Uke books don't even have music, only those stupid tabs. So now I'm learning them.

I started this thread because I was curious about the 6 and minor 7th "puzzlement,"but it blossomed into the great chord debate which I am really enjoying. This thread already has more info than I needed, but some of it is very interesting and maybe useful. Someone could have said "that's just the way it is", and I could have joined the crowd. But that's not my way. I like to try to understand things and know why i'm doing them. I have trouble "Just Doing It", or joining the crowd. I'd rather just drop things that I don't understand.

Anyway, for the time being, I'll play C6, but I refuse to play Am7.

Down Up Dick
08-11-2014, 05:13 AM
VegasGeorge, I'm on the very brink of understanding your comment about the Diminished 7th Chords. That's the best definition I've seen so far. The whole thing still doesn't make sense, yet it kinda does. The idea that some chords can just fit in anywhere confuses me. I guess I should just play the chords on the tabs and sing the words. It's a good thing I wasn't a music major in college; my head would have exploded. Well, anyway, thanks for the good info.

Down Up Dick
08-11-2014, 12:38 PM
Bunnyf, that's the same way I approach music too. At my age, music is for fun and relaxation and not an endless grind of study and practice. I practice things when I think I need it, and I study things that interest me like clawhammer. Anyway that's my view of things.

Pundabaya
08-13-2014, 08:02 AM
I've found it best to accept these things and not to worry. I mean it doesn't matter in the great scheme of things. And an Am or C chord usually works just as well. I can't understand music theory, so X fingering = Y chord is fine by me.

Down Up Dick
08-13-2014, 08:16 AM
Ya know, Pundabaya, even after all that debating, I agree with you completely. When I first started out I just wanted to sing and accompany myself on the Uke, but the musician in me keeps interfering with that plan. I keep jerking myself back to the plan and then drifting into other stuff. Now, I'm studying clawhammer and a bit of finger picking and even pressing myself to learn more chords. It's really difficult for one to be satisfied.

Down Up Dick
08-13-2014, 03:03 PM
All right, ubulele, you can't talk all that trash to us without telling us a bit about yourself. College? If so, major? If not, where do you find the time to study all that stuff? You sound like a teacher, or at least a wannabe.

As for myself, I've been playing and studying music since I was in the fourth grade. I understood all your theory info except some of the chord stuff was a bit over my head. I've played many different instruments in my life, but my embouchure is on it's way out as is my concentration and memory. Gettin' old is the pits. My major is English, and that's why I wanna sing. So there it is.

Ukejenny
08-13-2014, 04:13 PM
Let’s look at an example….

The C Major chord is C-E-G (the first, third and fifth notes of the C major scale). If we add the sixth note of the scale (A), then we have C6 (C-E-G-A).

The A minor chord is A-C-E (the first, third and fifth notes of the natural A minor scale). If we add the seventh note of the scale (G), then we have Am7 (A-C-E-G).

Amen to all that.

Ukejenny
08-13-2014, 04:15 PM
The two chords absolutely sound the same... They are the same notes. It is where you use them that defines their major or minor quality.

Amen again - what chord comes before? What chord comes after? Location, location, location...

Ukejenny
08-13-2014, 04:17 PM
The thing about music theory is there's a lot of it, and much if it is completely optional. The other thing is its supposed to be helpful, but it isn't often explained very well to someone who's not versed in it.

Hahahaha! Reminds me of learning all the rules of part writing and having to write them all verbatim, and then spending the next three semesters breaking them.

Ukejenny
08-13-2014, 04:28 PM
One way to think about it is, look at a piano. It has 88 keys, going from lowest to highest. That piano has seven octaves, plus a few extra keys.

Now, think of your two chords -

For your C6, you would find a C and build the chord from there - going up (toward the right)
For your Am7, you would start with an A instead, and build the chord from there.

On a piano, these two chords could sound quite different, because of which note is the root (here, the lowest played) and the sequence of notes will be different.

On a piano, a C E G A does, in fact, sound a bit different than an A C E G.

Now, think of an orchestra - tons of instruments, broken into parts, and you put the root of each chord in the tuba/double bass. Then spread out the rest through all the instruments and parts. You can add many different colors/timbres you can mold it a zillion different ways.

Using this example, we can see that a two octave ukulele can play a wide variety of sounds, combinations, and tone colors.

A seven octave piano can expand on that and do quite a bit more.

A full blown orchestra can throw in all the different instruments and take it to the next level.

This in no way means that an orchestra is better than a piano or a ukulele - just that there are different sets of possibilities.

Down Up Dick
08-13-2014, 04:28 PM
Ukejenny, that's the way most schooling is. Either that or one learns lots and lots of stuff and then never sees it again after school.

This comment was directed to your 07:17 PM comment.