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Title: Power Chords
Level: Beginner
Style: Heavy Metal Rhythm
Instructor: Ky MacPherson

Hey kids, its Ky again!  Today we will learn about power chords!
Last time we learned the Half-Step and Whole-Step intervals.  To start
this lesson off we will learn a new interval: the Perfect Fifth.
A perfect fifth is equal to seven half steps, i.e. two notes seven frets
apart.  However, since we are talking about a chord, that means we want
to strike both notes simultaneously, and the only way to do this is by
using two strings.  Here is a sample power chord:


The root note, played on the A string, is the C.  And the fifth of C, which
is a G, is played on the D string.  The beauty of power chords, is that
you can make a root-fifth chord almost anywhere by simply moving the
same shape around the fretboard.  However, note that the shape changes when
you play the root on the G-string, since the interval between the G-string
and the B-string is different from the interval between other strings.
Now lets look at some variations on the power chord:


In the first example, we have added another root above the fifth.  This
is another very common shape.  The added high note makes the chord a 
little brighter.  In the second example, we still have the root above the
fifth, and now we have added a fifth below the root.

The third example shows just the two lowest notes of the previous example.
Here the root is actually the higher of the two notes, and the fifth is
the lower note.  This is another important shape to learn.  Technically,
this chord is called an "inverted" power chord.  "Inversion" simply 
refers to the fact that the root is higher than the fifth ... you can 
think of this as turning the chord upside-down.

Now lets combine our understanding of power chords with the minor scale
that we learned in the last lesson.  Lets write all the power chords for
the E minor key.

       I    II  iii   IV   V    vi  vii   I

Notice several things:  The root notes of the chords simply follow the
pattern we learned last time, the ascending E minor scale.  I numbered 
the chords using roman numerals.  This is the convention for chords.
In this and future lessons from me, it will be understood that we are talking
about root-fifth power chords when I use a roman numeral.  Note that this
is not always the case in other kinds of music.

Finally, if you are wondering why I used lowercase letters for the 3rd,
6th and 7th chords, it is because we are using the minor scale, and these
three minor intervals are flatted with respect to the major scale.

Notice how the first chord and the last chord are both I-chords.  In fact,
any chord whose root note is an E would be an I-chord in the E minor key.
Similarly, there are many of each chord all over the fretboard.

Class Assignment:
Try finding some more I-chords, II-chords, etc. in the E minor key.  Also,
try finding all the chords for another minor key of your choice.

In the next lesson, we will learn about the tonic, which is an extremely
important concept.  See you then!

"Glam rock just isn't what it used to be, Beavis"
(I am currently moving so don't expect a quick response!)

No  Name                           Style               Level         Instructor
 27 The Tonic                      Heavy Metal Rhythm    B        Ky MacPherson

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