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ADD & DIMINISHED CHORDS (What are they and how to play them)

Ever wondered what Dim (Diminished) & Add meant? This is the perfect answer.

Add chords are major triads with an additional note added for color making them four notes. Add chords are actually known as added tone chords and there are basically two common and mostly used types which are the add9 and add2 chords.

*C add chords*
We are going to be looking at add chords in the C major scale and we’ve got C add and C add 2.
These four-note chords are made up of the same notes but the C add9 has its added note as the 9th note on the scale while the Cadd2 has its added note as the second note on the scale.

*Note formula*= C-E-G-D


*Note Formula*= C-D-E-G



A diminished chord is a type of chord that is made up of a root note, a minor 3rd, and a diminished fifth (the minor 3rd is located 3 half steps above the root and the dim fifth is located 6 half steps above the root note). Diminished chords possess a strong dark and tense timbre to their sound and most times they can come off as very unstable sounding especially if they’ve played out of context.
They are normally used as “passing chords” I.e chords played in between transitions from one chord to another.
Diminished chords are of 3 categories; The diminished triads, the diminished seventh, and the half-diminished seventh.

*The Diminished triads*

Like all triads, the diminished triads contain 3 notes; the root note, a minor 3rd, and a diminished fifth. The diminished triad serves as the baseline or starting point for constructing the diminished seventh and the half-diminished seventh chords.


*Cdim*( C diminished)

*Note formula*; C- Eb-Gb
Left hand: 5-3-1
Right hand: 1-3-5

*The diminished seventh*
The diminished seventh is a four-note chord which is a diminished triad with a diminished seventh added. So it is made up of the root note, the minor 3rd, the diminished 5th, and the diminished 7th

*Cdim7 chord* (Also written as C°7)
*NoteFormula*= C-Eb-Gb-Bb
Left hand: 5-3-2-1
Right hand: 1-2-3-5

*The half-diminished seventh*
The half-diminished seventh chord is the diminished triad with a minor seventh added.

*C half dim7 chord*(Also written as Cm7(b5) chord)
*Note Formula*: C-Eb-Gb-Bb
Right hand: 5-3-2-1
Left hand: 1-2-3-5

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