The Chord Doctor - Expand Your Chordal Command Harrisonburg VA

The chord chart for what I play could be the same for accompanying a number of different artists, but how I voice those chords may be radically different depending on the music. To illustrate that, Examples 1-5 present the same eight-bar chord progression in a variety of contexts — proof positive that the same chord can sound completely different depending on how you voice it.

Catherine W.
(877) 231-8505
New Rd
Suffolk, VA
Subjects
Music Performance, Guitar, Singing, Songwriting, Piano, Percussion, Music Theory
Ages Taught
12 to 99
Specialties
Ear Training & Chord Theory
Education
Belmont University School of Music - Music Composition - 1992-1996 Tidewater Community College - Prerequisites for Belmont - 1990-1992
Membership Organizations
TakeLessons Music Teacher

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Dr. Micheal Simon
306 Tyler Ave 9 Olivene Dr
Newport News, VA
Instruments
Drums, Ear Training, Musicology, Other, Piano, Theory, Voice
Styles
Electronic, Other
Experience Levels
Advanced, Beginner, Intermediate
Rate
$60
Years of Experience
20 Years

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Carol K.
(877) 231-8505
Mallard Pond Ct
Manassas, VA
Subjects
Piano, Music Theory
Ages Taught
1 to 99
Specialties
Mixture of methods, however Alfred, Piano Discoveries, and Faber are the ones I use most often. I teach both classical, pop, and Broadway. I also incorporate music related computer games and for the five and six year olds I use some of the ideas from the Music for Young Children Program
Education
Mary Washington College - Historic Preservation - 1989-1993 (Bachelor's degree received) George Mason Univ. - Music - 1976-1980 (Bachelor's degree received) West Aurora Sr. High - NA - 1968-1971 (High School diploma received)
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TakeLessons Music Teacher

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Olga Simonova
Reston, VA
Instruments
Piano, Theory
Styles
Classical
Experience Levels
Advanced, Beginner, Intermediate
Rate
$0
Years of Experience
20 Years

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Khanh-Vi N.
(877) 231-8505
Sydenstricker Road
Springfield, VA
Subjects
Music Theory, Piano, Songwriting
Ages Taught
5 to 80
Specialties
Classical music/keyboard styles; Piano pedagogy; contempory/jazz composition; Suzuki Method.
Education
Northern Virginia Community College - Annandale Campus - Music Theory, Piano - August 2002-July 2004 (not complete) Virginia Commonwealth University - Music Education - August 2004-Present (not complete)
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TakeLessons Music Teacher

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Catherine W.
(877) 231-8505
Doe Run
Suffolk, VA
Subjects
Songwriting, Piano, Percussion, Singing, Guitar, Music Theory, Music Performance
Ages Taught
12 to 99
Specialties
Ear Training & Chord Theory
Education
Belmont University School of Music - Music Composition - 1992-1996 Tidewater Community College - Prerequisites for Belmont - 1990-1992
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TakeLessons Music Teacher

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Wade M.
(877) 231-8505
University Drive
Fairfax, VA
Subjects
Music Performance, Music Recording, Songwriting, Music Theory, Piano
Ages Taught
6 to 99
Specialties
Beginning through Advanced/Professional Level Piano; Classical; Introductory Jazz; Music Theory; Composition; Song Writing; Improvisation; Ear Training; Sight Singing; Conducting; Dalcroze method; Orff method; Suzuki method; Artistry at the Piano;
Education
Stetson University - Bachelor of Music in Piano Performance - 2010 George Mason University - Master of Music in Piano Performance - 2012
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TakeLessons Music Teacher

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Lori Stevens Piano Studio
(540) 420-4956
205 East 4th Street
Salem, VA
 
Haichong Noh Piano Studio at St. Francis School
(703) 723-9160
44125 Woodridge Pkwy., Ste. 220
Leesburg, VA
 
Phillip H.
(877) 231-8505
Quail Hollow Drive
Hayes, VA
Subjects
Piano, Songwriting, Music Theory, Organ
Ages Taught
10 to 50
Specialties
For beginning piano students, I prefer teaching the Hal Leonard Method.
Education
Moody Bible Institute - Piano Performance - 08/87-05/92 (Bachelor's degree received)
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TakeLessons Music Teacher

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The Chord Doctor - Expand Your Chordal Command

by Clifford Carter

You hear that the government is contemplating another multi-billion dollar stimulus package. That’s an intimidating number I can’t even digest. A much kinder, gentler number is 12 — the number of notes in the chromatic scale. This month, we’ll scratch the surface of combining those notes into chord colors appropriate for different styles of music.

The chord chart for what I play could be the same for accompanying a number of different artists, but how I voice those chords may be radically different depending on the music. To illustrate that, Examples 1-5 present the same eight-bar chord progression in a variety of contexts — proof positive that the same chord can sound completely different depending on how you voice it. Example 6 gives you hands-on practice material to start expanding your chord comfort zone. The ultimate goal is that regardless of whatever curve the music throws you, you can choose your next voicing without overthinking.

One last thing: Notice the simple left hand parts in the bass clefs throughout. It’s good to practice more than one thing at a time, and you don’t want an idle hand. By playing a bass line, you give the right hand a musical context, while developing hand independence. You’re also working on your timing, and making what could be a somewhat tedious exercise a bit more fun and musical.

Click the sheet music thumbnails for super-size versions suitable for playing! Click the example headers for audio clips.

kb0210 Plat It Chord Doc 1 Ex. 1 - click for audio. Here’s an eight-bar progression I’d play on, say, the first verse of a Patti Scialfa song. It’s simple and sparse with not a lot of movement — a nice bed. All chords are either triads or four-note chords with one of the triad’s notes doubled. The exceptions are bars 3 and 6, where I’m just playing the root and fifth in each hand. Why? Because Nils Lofgren is next to me playing some fat, soulful chords unique to the guitar, and I want to get out of his harmonic space. By eliminating thirds at that moment, it avoids any clashes or unnecessary doubling.

0210 Play It Chord Doc 2 Ex. 2 - click for audio . I’d play in the second verse with more character and rhythmic action. By simply using the ninth of each chord, we get a new sound, moving the piano a little more to the forefront.

0210 Play It Chord Doc 3 Ex. 3 - click for audio . In this variation on Example 2, I add the fourth in addition to the ninth. It’s similar in style but adds new harmonic identity. This style of adding fourths and ninths (or “twos and fours”) is very guitar-like, and a signature sound of guitar bands like the Byrds and Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers. Many pianists have taken cues from guitar-oriented voicings when playing triad-based music. Listen to Elton John, Billy Joel, Matt Rollings, and the E Street Band’s Roy Bittan to get these new sounds into your hands and ears.

0210 Play It Chord Doc 4 Ex. 4 - click for audio. Here’s the same basic progression, played with a gospel or R&B style. I recently played in the Baltimor...

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