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Music Theory: The Emotions of Chords

John-Paul Gentile

14:52 · Music Theory

JP teaches the emotions different chords emit to help with grasping and memorizing each of the numbers in the number system.

Music Theory: The Emotions of Chords

John-Paul Gentile

Key of G
  • 1 = solid, feels like home, the resolve, the conclusion, the end of the sentence
  • 4 = a crossroad (it can take you to the 5, to the 1 etc), still solid, it gives me options to go other places
  • 5 = a comma, “so then” – it brings a tension, you want to go somewhere after the 5, it doesn’t resolve, you can’t stay on it, it’s pointing towards something. A 5 is also a tool to lift something, it brings the music up a little bit.
  • 6 = it adds to something, you can swap it for a 1 at any time, when you start a song with 6 it wants to take you somewhere.

By working out the emotional feel of a chord, you can write a song by writing down the chords by number that you already have and then sit back and work out how you want it to feel a part of a song, and add a chord that fits the emotion.

  • 2 = a huge lift, like a 5 but adds more flavor, 2 is great for a bridge or pre-chorus, adds color.

  • 3 = awesome in relationship to 1, when swapping out the base note to a 3 it adds great forward motion, momentum, a color chord, it’s pushing me towards something. The 3 is great to partner with the 4 – it’s a moody, broody kind of feel.

  • 7 = tension, it wants to resolve