What are tetrads

Tetrad Chords / Seventh Chords - Music Theory with Guitar Shapes

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  • On 09/11/2018

What are tetrad chordsWhat's a Tetrad ?

A basic chord is built with three notes this is what we call "triad chords" or "triads". Tetrad chords aka "four note-chords" are simply chords containing four notes, “tetra“ is a Greek root meaning four.

This means that tetrads are triads with an additional note, a major seventh or a minor seventh. 

This article will enlighten you on how these tetrad chords are built and how they can be classified.

Tetrads are essentially seventh chords. Seventh chords are what happens when you stack one minor or major third on top of a triad. Common-practice music uses five types of tetrads (m7, Maj7, dom7, dim7 and half-dim7). You will find below the formulas and guitar shapes to play drop 2, drop 3 chords and drop 2-4 tetrad chords on guitar.

How to Play Tetrads on Guitar?

Major Seventh Chords

Formula is 1 - 3 - 5 - 7 

(e.g. C major 7 : C-E-G-B)

Minor Seventh Chords

Formula is 1 - b3 - 5 -b7

(e.g. C minor 7 : C-Eb-G-Bb)

Dominant Seventh Chords

Formula is 1 - 3 - 5 - b7

(e.g. C7 : C-E-G-Bb)

Half-Diminished Chords

Formula is 1 - b3 - b5 - b7

(e.g. Cm7b5 : C-Eb-Gb-Bb)

Diminished seventh

Formula 1 - b3 - b5 - b

(e.g. Cdim7: C-Eb-Gb-A)

However, jazz uses all of the tetrads chords previously seen plus some others as :

Augmented Seventh Chords

Formula is 1 - 3 - #5 - b7

(e.g. Caug7 : C-E-G#-B)

Minor/major seventh 

Formula is 1 - b3 - b5 - 7

(e.g. CminMaj7 : C-Eb-G-B)

Augmented Major Seventh 

Formula is 1 - 3 - #5 - 7

(e.g. CMaj7#5 : C-E-G#-B)

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Theory harmony tetrads chords


  • ramildo aparecido zancan
    • 1. ramildo aparecido zancan On 04/23/2019
    Fantástic !!!!! Admirable !!! Glorious !!!
    • Stef Ramin
      • Stef RaminOn 04/23/2019