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Zebra Keys

Chords

Lesson 10 - Three Primary Chords

printable version

I. Index


1.  Introduction
2. Playing the I, IV, V Chords in the Key of C Major
3. How Does the I, IV, V Chords Apply to Playing and Writing Songs
4. Finding the I, IV, V Chords in All 12 Keys
5. Conclusion


II. Content


1. Introduction
In this lesson, you will learn about three chords that can be used to play literally 1000's of songs. These three chords are sometimes called the "primary chords", or the "I, IV, V chords".


2. Playing the I, IV, V Chords in the Key of C Major
Every key has its own set of I, IV, V chords. Below is an illustration of a major scale in the key of C.










To play the I, IV, V chords in any key, you just have to play a major chord on the 1st, 4th and 5th notes of the major scale of that key. Below is the I chord of the C major scale. It is a major chord built on the 1st note of the C major scale.










Below is the IV chord of the C major scale. It is a major chord built on the 4th note of the C major scale.










Below is the V chord of the C major scale. It is a major chord built on the 5th note of the C major scale.










3. How Does the I, IV, V Chords Apply to Playing and Writing Songs
The I, IV, V chords can be used to play harmony for 1000's of songs.


4. Finding the I, IV, V Chords in All 12 Keys
You can use the major scale to help you locate the I, IV, V chords. The I chord is the major chord that is built on the 1st note of any major scale. The IV chord is the chord that is built on the 4th note of any major scale. The V chord is the chord that is built on the 5th note of any major scale.

Below is a list of the I, IV, V chords starting on all 12 keys.

A, D, E

Bb, Eb, F

B, E, F#

C, F, G

Db, Gb, Ab

D, G, A

Eb, Ab, Bb

E, A , B

F, Bb, C

F#, B, C#

G, C, D

Ab, Db, Eb


5. Conclusion
The I, IV, V chords can be used to harmonize most of the songs you hear on the radio. In this lesson, you reviewed the I, IV, V chords in the key of C major. There is a set of I, IV, V chords for each of the 12 keys.




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