Major chords are the most important chord that you can learn.
The majority of songs that you will learn will consist mostly of these chords. Most contemporary songs are made up of a mixture of Major and Minor Chords. So once you learn how to build both of these chords then you will be able to play most contemporary songs.
Chords in Contemporary Music
These chords are used over and over again in contemporary music. Most every song that you hear on the radio is going to have at least three of these chords in them. Go to my Chord Progressions section to learn about the three main Major Chords that are used in music.
How to build the Chord
Most chords are made up of three notes: the root, major third, and perfect fifth. My intervals section will explain what these are.
To build any chord you need to know your scales (refer to my scales page). A scale tells you what notes are to be played for a certain key. This might not make any sense so check out the scales section for more help.
Once you know all about scales you can easily build any chord. To build the chord you simple find the scale for the chord you want to build.
For example let’s find a G chord.
To find that chord lets find the G Major Scale. Like you learned in the Major scales section you count up by Whole Steps and Half Steps W-W-H-W-W-W-H.
Look at the image to see the G Major Scale
Now to find the G chord. These chords consists of the First Third and Fifth of the scale. The first is always the root note, or the starting note, which in this example is G.
Now count up to the third note. G is 1, A is 2, and B is 3. Now you have the first two notes of the chord G and B.
To find the last note you do the same thing and count up to the fifth note of the scale. In this example it would be D.
So we found that a G chord is made up of the notes G (the root), B (third), and D (fifth).
Finding Chords for all the Keys
The example we used was to find a G major. That was easy right? But what about all the other chords?
It’s the same thing for all the other chords. You find the root then count up the scale to the third and the fifth in that scale.
Lets do one more example to make sure you really know how to build a major chord. Lets find a D Major.
Find the D Major Scale by using W-W-H-W–W–W-H.
Then use the first, third, and fifth in the scale. This tells us the D chord is made up of a D, F#, and A.
Now that you know how to find a Major Chord make sure you take the time to learn all of your chords in all keys. When you can find all these chords in all the keys quickly then you can move on to finding Minor Chords.
Need more help learning chords? Learn almost every chord you'll ever need with our Piano Chord Encyclopedia.