### Practical Music Theory unit 6: Chord Symbols and definitions

## Terms and symbols in chord names

### TERMS:

**Add (as in add9):** The 9th is added to the triad (7th is not present)

Notation Example: Dadd9

**Alt (altered)**–means that 5th, 9th, and 13th are ALL either flatted or sharped (player’s discretion as to which to include in a chord voicing).

Notation Example: C7(alt)

**Augmented: **The 5th is sharped

Notation Examples: C+, Caug, C7+, C7(+5)

**Diminished: ** Both the 3rd and 5th are flatted.

Notation examples: Cdim, C°, C°7

**Dominant:** Contains a flatted 7th, as well as a natural 3rd & 5th.

Notation examples: C7, C9, C11, C13 (all of these are “dominant” chords)

**Flat:** Lowered by 1/2 step. Symbol looks like a lower-case b (very difficult to get this symbol to work well on web pages, so I just use the lowercase b)

Notation example: Bb, Ebm7

**Half-Diminished**: A.K.A. “minor 7 flat 5”, a chord containing a minor 3rd, a flat 5th, and a flat 7 (note that a full diminished chord contains a double-flat 7th).

Notation Examples: Cm7b5, Cm7(b5), CØ

**Major:** Contains natural (a.k.a. “major”) 3rd and natural 5th.

Notation examples: Cmaj7, CΔ

**Minor:** Contains a flat (a.k.a. “minor”) 3rd and a natural 5th.

Notation examples: Cm, Cm7, C-, C-7

**Sharp:** Raised by 1/2 step.

Notation examples: C#, C#m, C#dim, etc.

**Sus (suspended): **3rd is omitted (suspended), usually replaced with 2nd or 4th.

Notation examples: Csus, C7sus, Csus2, Csus4

### SYMBOLS:

△ major

– minor

° diminished

+ augmented