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ChristopherSchlegel
Guitar Tricks Instructor
Joined: 08/09/05
Posts: 8,346
ChristopherSchlegel
Guitar Tricks Instructor
Joined: 08/09/05
Posts: 8,346
05/31/2008 10:52 pm
Originally Posted by: Drew77Thanks Christopher.

You are quite welcome.

I also neglected to deal with another crucial part of your question. When you have a symmetrical chord, an augmented or diminished chord, you name it by it's function.

For example, let's say you are in A minor. Then you alter it to A harmonic minor so you can play a IIIaug chord, the Caug. Since Caug is symmetrical you can choose anyone of it's notes to name it by:

Caug: C-E-G#
Eaug: E-G#-C
G#aug: G#-C-E

In a case like this you use the letter that reflects the chord's function in the song: What happens after the augmented chord? Where is it leading the music?

If you are going to an F major (or minor),then call it a Caug because it is acting as the V of F.
If you are going to a A minor (or major) then it's an E aug, V of A.
If you are going to a C# minor (or major) then it's an G# aug, V of C#.

This is because augmented chords usually function as V chords (or secondary dominants of some kind). Diminished chords are usually vii chords, which is also a dominant function, but a half step below the next root instead of the fifth of the next chord.

Many classical and jazz composers frequently used diminished chords to modulate to different keys by using this technique.

For example, let's say you are in A minor. Then you alter it to A harmonic minor so you can play a vii dim7 chord, the G#dim7. Since G#dim is symmetrical you can choose anyone of it's notes to name it by:

G#dim7: G#-B-D-F
Bdim7: B-D-F-G#
Ddim7: D-F-G#-B
Fdim7: F-G#-B-D

Now you can go to:
C major or minor from Bdim7.
Eflat major or minor from Ddim7.
Gflat major or minor from Fdim7.

Neat, huh? :)

If there is not any tonal function happening, then simply name it so it reflects the mode you are in and try not to duplicate musical letters if possible.

OK, there you go!
Christopher Schlegel
Guitar Tricks Instructor

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