Chords in hymns are mostly major or minor triads with some inversions to make the parts easier to sing. As a pianist, knowing and playing simple triads is not enough. To play rich, interesting chords consider altered chords. In the example below we move from a I chord to a triad with an added sixth interval. This would be a C6 or I6 (not to be confused with a first inversion). It is a C6 because we play the C triad (C,E,G or I, iii, V) and add the vi of the scale. But the chord is all scrunched up.
We can un-scrunch it and play a vi7 chord by rearranging the order of notes, playing the A as the root of the chord in the bass, and G as the 7th in the middle with the left thumb. The C and E are played in the right hand. The chord becomes Am7 which is the vi chord in the scale as shown on the roadmap.
It is the spacing or voicing of the notes that make the Am7 chord distinct. Again, the root of the chord (A) is played in the bass and the 7th (G) is played in the middle with the left thumb. This is a pattern you can use in the future for all 7th's. As a rule of THUMB, play the 7th with the THUMB.
ROADMAP OF THE C SCALE- You can see that we went from a I chord to a vi chord, but because we added the 7th, the new chord is called a vi7 or Am7.
In review, the highlights are:
You can print the PDF worksheet card for this lesson by clicking the button here:
THE NEXT POST: Other sources