Lesson 3—Chord Positions
“Harmony is the combination of two or more tones called Chords, so arranged as to produce a pleasing effect.”
Harmony deals with the construction, progression and modulation of chords.
The first and most important chord is the tonic chord. The tonic chord is built on the first note or root of the scale, and is formed by using the first, third and fifth notes of the scale. In the key of C the pitch names would be C, E, and G.
Find the tonic chord in the scales below and then circle those notes that make up that tonic chord.
Music for church or chorus has, as a rule, four parts: Soprano, Alto, Tenor, and Bass. Therefore, because the chord has but three tones and our music requires four, it is necessary that one tone of the chord be doubled. The first note of the scale is the note that is the best tone to be doubled.
Below are positions of the tonic chord in the Key of C. Note that the first note, C, is doubled.
Also note that in first position number one or prime of the chord is the soprano.
In second position, the second note of the chord is in the soprano.
In third position, the third note of the chord is in the soprano.
The exercise below is in the Key of G. Tell whether the positions are 1st, 2nd or 3rd.