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Chord Progressions - The vii-dim chord

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The vii-dim chord

The seventh note is a troublemaker. If we build a diatonic chord on the seventh, we end up with a chord that has two minor thirds. This is a diminished triad. More important than the two minor thirds is that the chord does not have a perfect fifth. The two minor thirds add up to a diminished fifth or a tritone. This is a restless, disharmonic intervals. But it is also a very powerful interval. A phrase you will see many times across this site is: The root gives a chord identity, the third gives character and the fifth gives stability. A chord without the perfect fifth will not have this stability.

To make a drama you need to have a "bad guy". If everything is sweet and harmonic, it may me nice. But it is boring. We need to let a snake into the paradise to get some action. The tritone and anything that derives from the tritone is "the bad guy". It creates tension and drives the harmony forward. Read more in The dominant 7th chord and the power of the tritone

I mention this now just to complete the list of diatonic chords. There will be more on diminished chords and tritones later.

Previous page: Previous page: Chord Progressions - The iii-chord (mediant)Next page: Chord Progressions - A Green Onion After Midnight will Change the World Next page:

Previous page: Next page:
Previous page: Chord Progressions - The iii-chord (mediant) Next page: Chord Progressions - A Green Onion After Midnight will Change the World