The Chord Doctor - Expand Your Chordal Command Santa Rosa CA

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.

Erin's Piano Studio
(707) 836-0600
Santa Rosa, CA
 
Robert H.
(877) 231-8505
Mission Blvd
Santa Rosa, CA
Subjects
Music Theory, Piano, Singing, Music Performance, Speaking Voice
Ages Taught
7 to 74
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Cal State Hayward - music - 1980-1981 (Bachelor's degree received)
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Francesca V.
(877) 231-8505
Eugene Place
San Diego, CA
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Music Theory, Piano, Speaking Voice, Classical Guitar, Music Performance, Singing, Songwriting, Guitar, Theatrical Broadway Singing, Opera Voice
Ages Taught
3 to 75
Specialties
My educational background is in classical performance, but on a day to day basis I perform rock and roll. I take pride in helping foster a well-rounded music experience for my students. I offer them opportunities to perform in traditional recitals and rock band camp, and am looking to branch into other performance opportunities such as jam sessions in the park. I can also teach bass, flamenco guitar, banjo and mandolin at a beginner level.
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Cornelia Connelly - - 1996-2000 (High School diploma received) California State University Los Angeles - Guitar/Voice Performance - 2000-2005
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Deneice H.
(877) 231-8505
Brockton Avenue
Riverside, CA
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Piano, Organ
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7 to 99
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Music, Piano, Organ, Keyboard .
Education
J. W. North Riverside.CA - Business Education - 1967-1969 University of California, Riverside - Political Science - 1969-1973 University of Wisconsin. Whitewater - Counseling & Guidance - 1975-1977 San Francisco Theological Seminary - Theology and Music - 1982-1986
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Gaw V.
(877) 231-8505
Carro Drive
Sacramento, CA
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Music Theory, Theatrical Broadway Singing, Trumpet, French Horn, Percussion, Piano, Singing, Violin, Music Performance, Songwriting
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1 to 99
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I specialize in Vocal Jazz and pop. I also specialize in marching percussion and concert percussion. I was brass player throughout high school and college. My music methods include basic music theory and ear training.
Education
California State University of Sacramento - Bachelor of Arts in Jazz Performance - 9/2004- present VAPAC (Visual And Performing Arts Charter) High School - Music - 9/2003-6/2004 (High School diploma received) Sacramento High School - - 9/2000-6/2003 (High School diploma received)
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Sean M.
(877) 231-8505
Donahue St.
Santa Rosa, CA
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Guitar, Bass Guitar, Classical Guitar, Piano, Music Theory, Music Recording
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1 to 99
Specialties
Visualization, transcribing music
Education
Colfax High School - High School Diploma - 08/1994-06/1999 (High School diploma received) SIerra College - General Education - 09/1999-06/2001 (not complete) CSU Chico - Music/Recording Arts - 08/2001-06/2004 (Bachelor's degree received)
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Brian J.
(877) 231-8505
37th St.
San Diego, CA
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Bass Guitar, Saxophone, Piano, Songwriting, Music Theory, Guitar
Ages Taught
6 to 60
Specialties
guitar, bass, sax, beginning to intermediate piano, songwriting, music theory, sight reading Progressive methods for Guitar and Bass. Bastien Methods for Piano. Rock, Pop, Punk, Reggae, Metal, Blues, and Classical. Some Funk, Jazz, and R&B.
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Patterson High School - General Education - 1996-2000 (degree received) Point Loma Nazarene University - Music Business - 2000-2005 (not complete)
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Benjamin C.
(877) 231-8505
Lincoln Street,
Carlsbad, CA
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Bass Guitar, Guitar, Piano, Music Recording
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1 to 99
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Modern/Classic/Acoustic Rock Pop Hip Hop Ballads Punk Metal Industrial Electronic
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Sunflower Christian - General - 1989-1993 (High School diploma received) Palomar College - General - 1990-2000 (not complete) Cedarville College - Communications/audio/video - 1994-1996 (not complete) Cal State Bakersfield - Communications/audio/video - 1997-1998 (not complete)
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Aivi T.
(877) 231-8505
Umpqua Ct
Fremont, CA
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Piano
Ages Taught
5 to 18
Specialties
I teach classical works, but also transcribe and arrange pieces for students who are interested in music beyond classical repertoire, particularly instrumental works from film, television and video game soundtracks. I also specialize in composition/theory.
Education
University of California, Davis - Music (Composition) - 2004-2008 (Bachelor's degree received)
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Josh E.
(877) 231-8505
Babbitt Ave
Encino, CA
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Music Recording, Songwriting, Piano
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5 to 99
Specialties
classical, pop
Education
University of Illinois - Music Open Studies - 2002-2006 (Bachelor's degree received)
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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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