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Thread: A7 Chord

  1. #26
    Registered User Sherry Cadenhead's Avatar
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    Default Re: A7 Chord

    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Wilson View Post
    Lots of A7 permutations. Thx for the mini lesson papa.
    I like the A7 sound of 6-5-0-(0) when playing in Dm using 7-3-0-x
    That's the combination I've been using, Mark, and have trouble playing cleanly. I've switched to John's suggestion of 0203. Not sure it sounds quite as good, but it is certainly easier to navigate.
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  2. #27
    Registered User Papa P's Avatar
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    Default Re: A7 Chord

    Whichever sounds good to your ear, feels good to the hand and, while you're building up your dexterity, whichever is easiest for you to move to and from.

    The example Mark gave is a very good example.
    Last edited by Papa P; Jan-15-2018 at 10:17am.

  3. #28
    Registered User John Rosett's Avatar
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    Default Re: A7 Chord

    A cute thing you can do with 2 note 7th chords: x65x is an E7. Move it back towards th nut 1 fret and it's an A7. Move back another fret and it's a D7, then G7, and C7.
    As far as hitting the chords without looking, just keep practicing it, and muscle memory will kick in. Pedal steel great Buddy Emmons used to practice in a completely dark room.
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  5. #29
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    Default Re: A7 Chord

    I tend to select the one that's most handy for where I am and where I'm going
    My ear tells me if it was a good choice to use again in that context or grouping
    If the same to my ear then handy wins

  6. #30
    jbmando RIP HK Jim Broyles's Avatar
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    Default Re: A7 Chord

    I wish music sites would not include A7/C# = A7/Db. Yes, the notes sound the same, but the note in the A major scale is C#. Since this is the theory forum, I call on all of us to use theoretically correct nomenclature. It isn't A7/Db, it's A7/C#.
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  8. #31
    Mandolin Friendly Mark Gunter's Avatar
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    Default Re: A7 Chord

    A couple thoughts on comments re: this page - http://chordlist.brian-amberg.de/en/...ard/A7/ra.html

    I think the author there is giving a good list of inversions, and I don't think he says anything about ensemble playing ... The bass notes are not necessarily extraneous, and can even be very important for effect when solo playing and perhaps in other circumstances. Also, I don't think the author is confusing the enharmonic equivalents when he gives the alternate name of A7/Db, after all, he has correctly listed A7/C# ... in theory, A7/Db could be a correct interpretation if this is a passing chord following a descending bass line in a progression where one would naturally expect a Db in the bass run. But admittedly, that's a theoretical situation, I can't cite an example off the top of my head. I did run into a similar thing last year though.

    It's good to understand theory, and to use nomenclature that avoids confusion, but that can sometimes be an impossible task.
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  10. #32
    Registered User mandolin breeze's Avatar
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    Default Re: A7 Chord

    There are a lot of good chord diagram websites out there and I've used several myself. Here's a pretty good one I came across recently. http://app.tekartik.com/chords/ - maybe you'll find it useful.

    Here's what the A7 chart looks like:

    Click image for larger version. 

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  12. #33
    Registered User Sherry Cadenhead's Avatar
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    Default Re: A7 Chord

    Is there an instrument I can learn that has 2 strings and 5 frets?
    Last edited by Sherry Cadenhead; Jan-16-2018 at 12:34am.
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  13. #34
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    Default Re: A7 Chord

    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Gunter View Post
    A couple thoughts on comments re: this page - http://chordlist.brian-amberg.de/en/...ard/A7/ra.html

    I think the author there is giving a good list of inversions, and I don't think he says anything about ensemble playing ... The bass notes are not necessarily extraneous, and can even be very important for effect when solo playing and perhaps in other circumstances. Also, I don't think the author is confusing the enharmonic equivalents when he gives the alternate name of A7/Db, after all, he has correctly listed A7/C# ... in theory, A7/Db could be a correct interpretation if this is a passing chord following a descending bass line in a progression where one would naturally expect a Db in the bass run. But admittedly, that's a theoretical situation, I can't cite an example off the top of my head. I did run into a similar thing last year though.

    It's good to understand theory, and to use nomenclature that avoids confusion, but that can sometimes be an impossible task.
    Well, I can't imagine any arranger using the enharmonic equivalent of a chord tone in a chord symbol. I mean, what if you saw E/Fb or something else equally silly? A7 contains a C#. I gotta believe the author is sincerely saying that C# and Db are interchangeable, thus adding to the confusion of the new or uninformed player.
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  14. #35
    Emando lover David Lewis's Avatar
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    Default Re: A7 Chord

    I'll raise you that, and suggest either 0-2-0-0 or x-2-0-3.

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  15. #36

    Default Re: A7 Chord

    Quote Originally Posted by Sherry Cadenhead View Post
    Is there an instrument I can learn that has 2 strings and 5 frets?
    Well... you could do what I do, and that's to just ignore the strings and the frets that you don't need.

    I'm not being snarky, as that's actually what I do.

    I grew up playing oldtime fiddle tunes, I still play fiddle tunes, I utilize the areas of the instrument that I need to get the notes I need, and I don't mess with the areas that I don't need. (I suppose it'd be different for classical, jazz, bluegrass etc.)

    For instance, on my rendition of the latest tune at MandolinCafe Song-a-Week, FWIW about 99 percent of my playing involves only the 2nd through 5th frets, with only a small number of optional excursions up to the 7th fret of the 1st string just for variety. Nothing outside of "first position" though.

    I also don't do full 4-finger or even 3-finger chords (longtime arthritis problems) so anytime you hear what sounds like a chord, it was only a double-stop (two strings played together), sometimes with neighboring open strings as well (if those open-string notes happen to fit the chord required).

    And on that same video, my little CGDAE mini classical guitar's accompaniment is almost entirely on only three of the bass strings. For a couple of reasons: the other (higher pitched) strings don't sound very good (it's a cheapie), and I really only needed the lower (bass) notes anyway. So, the way I'm playing it, it might as well just be a 3-string guitar.

    Point being, just because an instrument has 'x' number of strings and 'x' number of frets, that doesn't mean you have to play all of them. Just use what you need.

    See, that saves you some money, 'cause now you don't have to buy a different instrument! Just adapt what you already have, to the sound you desire, and you're golden.

    (Although... it's a good thing more people don't think like I do, or there'd be far less work for luthiers and custom instrument builders.)
    Last edited by JL277z; Jan-17-2018 at 2:34am. Reason: Fixed typo.

  16. #37
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    Default Re: A7 Chord

    Quote Originally Posted by John Kelly View Post
    Another variation would be 0-2-0-3, Sherry, giving you the notes A-E-A-G, and only 2 strings to fret!

    The lowest note is G, not A, and there is no third in this voicing. Not sure it's that easy to leave a string open between two fretted ones.

  17. #38
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    Default Re: A7 Chord

    Quote Originally Posted by Papa P View Post

    The A7/C# (A7/Db) is the first inversion which means that the
    root note is not the lowest note in the fingering. The 2nd note
    of the chord, C#, is the lowest.

    You will, also, see the C# in the 2nd inversion, A7/E. The 2nd
    inversion has the 3rd note in the chord (E) as the lowest note in the fingering.

    3rd inversion A7/G uses G as lowest note.


    Root pattern has root as lowest note.
    1st inversion uses 2nd note as lowest note.
    2nd inversion uses 3rd note as lowest note.
    3rd inversion uses 4th note.

    Inversions work the same in all chords whether
    Major, minor or whatever.

    Simply put an inversion is an alternate way of
    musically expressing a chord pattern.

    Hope this helps.
    As I said before, it's not very meaningful to speak of inversions here. Inversions are used mainly to create interesting bass lines. There is also the 6-4 preparation, G/d, D7, G (in the key of G)

    But there is no bass on a mandolin! To put things in perspective,
    the lowest e on a mandolin corresponds to the open first string on a guitar, and the lowest c# sits on the second string of the guitar. In the genres we are discussing here, the role of mandolin chords is rhythmic and percussive rather than harmonic, and that aspect should determine the choice of voicings.

    Also, again, the root is the most dispensible note, both in accompaniment and in the presentation of a melody. One song I love to play is Slow Poke, in the key of Bb. Towards the end the progression is basically Eb, ebm, Bb, G9; in my version it becomes Ebmaj7, Gbmaj7, dm7, bm7b5 - only the first chord contains the root, only the last has a note on an open string, and in the first three I leave out the fifth.

  18. #39

    Default Re: A7 Chord

    Quote Originally Posted by ralph johansson View Post
    ... Inversions are used mainly to create interesting bass lines. ... But there is no bass on a mandolin! ...
    I thought inversions are also used for "voice leading" on the *high* notes, not just a bass thing.

    Quote Originally Posted by ralph johansson View Post
    ... In the genres we are discussing here, the role of mandolin chords is rhythmic and percussive rather than harmonic, and that aspect should determine the choice of voicings. ...
    Hmm... maybe I missed it, but I didn't see any mention of mandolin genres by the OP or anyone else except by me in my earlier post, I said I play fiddle tunes, but even there the high note of an accompaniment can *definitely* be important at least to some players & in some situations (slower tunes, waltzes, etc). Maybe not applicable to a "rhythmic" & "percussive" style, but there must surely be plenty of other uses for mandolin where it might be advantageous to use different inversions to get different high (treble) notes in a chord to make the harmony sound nicer against the melody.

  19. #40
    Registered User Sherry Cadenhead's Avatar
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    Default Re: A7 Chord

    I envy the knowledge exhibited by many on the Cafe. So much of what has been said on this thread and elsewhere is so sooooo over my head that I get a little frustrated. Please forgive me for sometimes letting it show.

    I am particularly interested in the A7 chord since I have a duet this Saturday with a violin student at my teacher's studio recital. We're playing Faded Love in D, which has multiple A7 chords. When I have time I'm playing the 6500 pattern; otherwise, it's the 0203 Jon and John suggested. Unless our playing is really bad, I'll be posting a video in the Newbies social group.
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  21. #41

    Default Re: A7 Chord

    Quote Originally Posted by JL277z View Post
    I thought inversions are also used for "voice leading" on the *high* notes, not just a bass thing.



    Hmm... maybe I missed it, but I didn't see any mention of mandolin genres by the OP or anyone else except by me in my earlier post, I said I play fiddle tunes, but even there the high note of an accompaniment can *definitely* be important at least to some players & in some situations (slower tunes, waltzes, etc). Maybe not applicable to a "rhythmic" & "percussive" style, but there must surely be plenty of other uses for mandolin where it might be advantageous to use different inversions to get different high (treble) notes in a chord to make the harmony sound nicer against the melody.
    Inversions have nothing to do with the upper voices. Inversions only pertain to the lowest note that ANY instrument is playing at a particular time. That is not to say that you can't change the upper voices for voice-leading, it's just not called "inversion". It would be called "voicing".

  22. #42

    Default Re: A7 Chord

    Quote Originally Posted by David L View Post
    Inversions have nothing to do with the upper voices. Inversions only pertain to the lowest note that ANY instrument is playing at a particular time. That is not to say that you can't change the upper voices for voice-leading, it's just not called "inversion". It would be called "voicing".
    The inversion name is derived from the lowest note, but as you can clearly see in the standard notation & piano diagram at this page, by definition each inversion also changes the highest note as well. So one would use a chord inversion to change the voicing, at least that seems obvious to me when the notes are written out where we can clearly see the relationships between the notes.

    (That example is for a C7 chord but the principle is the same - typing this on phone right now, when I get back to my computer tonight I will see about finding an A7 example which will show the exact same thing with taking the bass note & putting it as the highest note instead.)

  23. #43
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    Default Re: A7 Chord

    Quote Originally Posted by JL277z View Post
    I thought inversions are also used for "voice leading" on the *high* notes, not just a bass thing.



    Hmm... maybe I missed it, but I didn't see any mention of mandolin genres by the OP or anyone else except by me in my earlier post, I said I play fiddle tunes, but even there the high note of an accompaniment can *definitely* be important at least to some players & in some situations (slower tunes, waltzes, etc). Maybe not applicable to a "rhythmic" & "percussive" style, but there must surely be plenty of other uses for mandolin where it might be advantageous to use different inversions to get different high (treble) notes in a chord to make the harmony sound nicer against the melody.
    Perhaps I should express myself more clearly. "A7/c#" means that the c# is in the bass, i.e., on some other instrument (double bass, piano, guitar, whatever). The mandolin comes, rhythmically and harmonically, on top of everything else, so you gotta listen to the rest of the cats and catesses to find the stuff that works.

  24. #44

    Default Re: A7 Chord

    Quote Originally Posted by JL277z View Post
    The inversion name is derived from the lowest note, but as you can clearly see in the standard notation & piano diagram at this page, by definition each inversion also changes the highest note as well. So one would use a chord inversion to change the voicing, at least that seems obvious to me when the notes are written out where we can clearly see the relationships between the notes.(
    Changing the inversion does NOT necessarily change the upper note. It does in the example you gave, but that is not the only way to change the inversion. Most chords are not voiced in close position with no doubling (as in your example). If the bass is in a lower octave and is doubled in an upper voice (a very usual voicing), it can change the inversion without changing the upper voices at all. An open-voiced chord can change to a close-voiced inversion without changing the top note.

  25. #45

    Default Re: A7 Chord

    Quote Originally Posted by ralph johansson View Post
    Perhaps I should express myself more clearly. "A7/c#" means that the c# is in the bass, i.e., on some other instrument (double bass, piano, guitar, whatever). The mandolin comes, rhythmically and harmonically, on top of everything else, so you gotta listen to the rest of the cats and catesses to find the stuff that works.
    Quote Originally Posted by David L View Post
    Changing the inversion does NOT necessarily change the upper note. It does in the example you gave, but that is not the only way to change the inversion. Most chords are not voiced in close position with no doubling (as in your example). If the bass is in a lower octave and is doubled in an upper voice (a very usual voicing), it can change the inversion without changing the upper voices at all. An open-voiced chord can change to a close-voiced inversion without changing the top note.
    Ok thanks for the clarification. I was just going by the diagrams I'd seen on the internet. (The diagrams I found may very well have about the same degree of reliability/usefulness as looking up chords for a song, get 15 different versions of the chord progression but none of them sound right.)

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