Posts Tagged ‘chords’



As much for my own reference (Internet searches really let me down for stuff like this), here are some tables about music notation/ theory.  From this you can find out the key a piece of music is in — look up the sharps and flats then decide if it’s major or minor by playing the major or minor chord.

The first is a table of all the major keys and relative minor keys for music. There are 24 varieties, but the minor share key signatures with major:

Minor Key Major Key b # Key Signature
rel F min Ab mjor 4 b b b b
rel F# min A mjor 3 # # #
A min rel C mjor 0 0
Bb mjor 2 b b
Bb min rel Db mjor 5 b b b b b
rel G# min B mjor 5 # # # # #
B min rel D mjor 2 # #
rel A min C mjor 0 0
C min rel Eb mjor 3 b b b
C# min rel E mjor 4 # # # #
rel Bb min Db mjor 5 b b b b b
rel B min D mjor 2 # #
D min rel F mjor 1 b
D# min rel F# mjor 6 # # # # # #
rel C# min Eb mjor 3 b b b
Eb min rel Gb mjor 6 b b b b b b
rel C# min E mjor 4 # # # #
E min rel G mjor 1 #
F mjor 1 b
F min rel Ab mjor 4 b b b b
rel D# min F# mjor 6 # # # # # #
F# min rel A mjor 3 # # #
rel Eb min Gb mjor 6 b b b b b b
rel E min G mjor 1 #
G min rel Bb mjor 2 b b
G# min rel B mjor 5 # # # # #

To get my files to organise themselves properly, I found that the more usual maj – min abbreviations were no good.  After a bit of experimentation I found that removing the “a” from major was best. This orders this properly and makes things easily identifiable: Bb min/ Bb mjor  as opposed to Bb maj/  Bb min.

Anyway, that’s all the keys, major and minor. In terms of key signatures (which indicate the notes you have to play), it simplifies down to just 12 varieties:

This is probably the one to try to learn, and then, later, learn associations to minor keys.

Major Key Key Signature
Ab b b b b
A # # #
Bb b b
B # # # # #
Db b b b b b
D # #
Eb b b b
E # # # #
F b
F# # # # # # #
Gb b b b b b b
G #

I have songs in every key in my MP3 collection, and I would rather play by key than by beats per minute.  MediaMonkey lets you customise, but I just use the “Mood” category to put in the key.  It’s then a cinch to organise by this column, and I get a list of songs from the lowest key to the highest!


Major Chords

Ab Ab C Eb
A A C# E
Bb Bb D F
B B D# F#
Db Db F Ab
D D F# A
Eb Eb G Bb
E E G# B
F# F# A# C#
Gb Gb Bb Db

Of course, it is easy to make a major triad chord into a minor one — always just drop the third one semitone.  In other words, drop the middle note of the triad down by one fret…

The second last chord when the third is dropped, gives a Bbb result — that’s just a technicality. Dropping Bb one fret is obviously A. So play A for a flattened Bb/A# or Bbb.

Hope this is useful!




[Pictures of sketch bnooks from 1977)I grew up in a semi-rural location.  It was quiet, mature and terribly boring, so I had little choice but to travel to meet up with my pals — and this meant that I was in a lot of different and pretty diverse groups, bands, teams and gangs.

I had pals in one group that would never — ever, in a million years — get on with pals in other groups.  That was part of the fun!

Mind you, it was not entirely black-and-white, cut-and-dried; I knew a few guys who liked art AND motorcycles, others who liked art AND music, others who liked music AND motorcycles, if you see what I mean.

But largely speaking, there were distinct groups of pals — and I would hang out with the guys who loved album art and who painted motorcycle petrol tanks, then I would see guys who played guitars and drums or the guys who played rugby with me!

Heck I actually had a pal who was incredibly shy, he liked to listen to music and was into hi-fi, but hated musicians and avoided bikers! So it was more about keeping everyone away from each other than anything else!

The result was that I picked up a bit of this and a bit of that.  I played a wee bit of guitar and bass, I did some sketches, I played a wee bit of rugby, I dabbled in hi-fi, did a bit of writing.  I think I did rather well as a talentless will-o-the-wisp, I may not have been any good at any one thing, but it was always fun… and still is to be perfectly honest!  Today, my wife is constantly amazed at the wild diversity of my acquaintances!

Anyway, for myself, I sometimes try to merge one thing with another.  I painted rugby players, I photographed rallies and speedway, and the above are the results of my attempt to blend guitar playing with art!

I discovered some old schoolday sketch pads from 1977, and thought I would embarrass myself by putting them up here on the world-wide web! Hey, why not? They are decades old and of no use apart from this sort of thing — maybe they will spark something in some real artistic soul that wanders across this blog.  You never know.  All I know is that all my life I have been about cross pollination between disparate social groups, why should it stop just because I am unable to get out and about as much!