C AUGMENTED PIANO CHORD
There are only
four basic types of three note chords: major, minor, augmented,
and diminished. All other piano chords are based upon these
I like to
explain and show to kids that the basic flavors of music are
those of the chords:
Major = happy
Minor = sad
mysterious and unstable
chord began not as a chord, but a melodic movement that involved
the highest member of the chord moving up a single half step,
almost always moving to the next higher half step.
It can only
have been later in musical history that this melodic movement
became codified into a chord, largely because of increasingly
frequent use in the expanding harmonic vocabulary of the
Take any major
chord, and move the top key up a half step. That's all there
is to the augmented chord.
readily grasp this.
In fact, one
can describe all four types of chords as mutations of the major
Minor = a major
chord with the middle note moved down a half step
Augmented = a
major chord with the top note moved up a half step
Diminished = a
major chord with the top two notes moved down a half step
chord is often used in old or comic films for the wavy dissolve
to a flash back or dream sequence. The chord denotes mystery,
change and instability.
It's a major
milestone in a child's ear training when they can distinguish
between the augmented (mystery) and diminished (danger.)
The younger the
child, the harder it is for them to distinguish the emotional
qualities of piano chords. They often mistake dark chords
(augmented, diminished) for sad chords.
here to play the C diminished chord.