Author Topic: 3rds & Thirds ... an exploration to enjoy  (Read 7602 times)

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Offline close2u

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3rds & Thirds ... an exploration to enjoy
« on: April 16, 2020, 10:54:46 am »
3rds and Thirds

Following up from an instrumental track composed and recorded by DavidP, in which he used double-stop 3rds as the melodic basis for his track, (posted here) I was inspired to create a thread exploring 3rds. I will be developing the thread with reference to intervals, scales, chord shapes, the CAGED system, triads and more. But first, I think that you should all have a little fun playing around with some 3rds. They are very accessible and user-friendly from the outset … as soon as you have a few very basic shapes under your fingers you can begin exploring and making music.
So … here goes with the fun from the get-go.
DavidP played his 3rds on the B & E strings in the key of D. I propose we start from the same place.
For these and all other 3rds we will look at the shapes no higher than fret 15. The shapes do repeat once you reach the octave.

Offline close2u

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Re: 3rds & Thirds ... an exploration to enjoy
« Reply #1 on: April 16, 2020, 10:56:51 am »
Double Stop 3rds in the key of D

Here is a TAB for the shapes on the B & E strings.



There are only two shapes. Take a few minutes to play these ascending and descending the neck. As you do so, consciously listen to the sounds. Then begin exploring and having fun. They are in the key of D so I recommend you play a drone note or a simple, occasional bass note on the open D string. To begin with you may simply want to slide up and down … something like this.

Click Here for an mp3 sound sample using double-stop 3rds in the key of D on the B & E strings

Tab for the mp3 sample:



 :)
« Last Edit: April 16, 2020, 08:51:30 pm by close2u »

Offline close2u

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Re: 3rds & Thirds ... an exploration to enjoy
« Reply #2 on: April 16, 2020, 10:59:55 am »
Arpeggiated 3rds in the key of D

Once you get a feel for using these 3rds you may want to vary how you play them. They do not have to be played as double stops (both notes simultaneously). You can arpeggiate them.

Click Here for an mp3 sound sample using arpeggiated 3rds in the key of D on the B & E strings

TAB for the mp3 sound sample:



Now go have some fun and explore, play, enjoy. :)

Then come back for more juicy goodness.
« Last Edit: April 16, 2020, 08:54:33 pm by close2u »

Offline DavidP

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Re: 3rds & Thirds ... an exploration to enjoy
« Reply #3 on: April 16, 2020, 02:52:13 pm »
Thanks for this Richard.  Looking forward to seeing how this develops.

Yet more vibes for putting this together for us.

Offline close2u

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Re: 3rds & Thirds ... an exploration to enjoy
« Reply #4 on: April 16, 2020, 08:13:01 pm »
I hope you're exploring, enjoying and surprising yourselves with the ease of making great sounds from these tiny little pairs of notes we call 3rds.

DavidP certainly had fun ...
Here is a TAB and mp3 of my transcription of his guitar part in his track.

(David kindly gave permission to share this)

mp3 of guitar part (playing double stop 3rds)


pdf of Tab


Offline close2u

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Re: 3rds & Thirds ... an exploration to enjoy
« Reply #5 on: April 16, 2020, 08:25:05 pm »
Double Stop 3rds in the key of D

You should by now have picked up your guitar and learned those two shapes on the B & E strings, moved around the fretboard and made some music.

Wow – isn’t that just a whole lot of fun and so, so musical.
And you’ve only been playing little note pairings on the thinnest two strings.
The fun doesn’t stop there … these 3rds can be found on other sets of two adjacent strings. So your enjoyment can expand.

Next we will learn the shapes for 3rds on the G & B strings

Go steady though …

The shapes are not the same as those you have just learned. There are still only two shapes in total on the G & B strings so learning them is not too challenging. Just ensure you get your fingers working right. And once you have them under your fingers you’re good to go.

Here is a TAB for the shapes on the G & B strings.



Take these shapes and spend time playing them as before – moving them around, ascending and descending the neck. As before, listen to the sounds. Then begin exploring and having fun. Again you can play a drone note or a simple bass pattern on the open D string. To begin with you may simply want to slide up and down … something like this demo.

Click Here for an mp3 sound sample of double-stop 3rds in the key of D on the G & B strings

TAB for the mp3 sound sample:



 :)
« Last Edit: April 26, 2020, 02:16:00 pm by close2u »

Offline close2u

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Re: 3rds & Thirds ... an exploration to enjoy
« Reply #6 on: April 16, 2020, 08:48:38 pm »
Arpeggiated 3rds in the key of D

As before, you do not need to play these 3rds as double stops.

Click Here for an mp3 sound sample using arpeggiated 3rds in the key of D on the G & B strings

TAB for the mp3 sound sample:



Offline CT

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Re: 3rds & Thirds ... an exploration to enjoy
« Reply #7 on: April 16, 2020, 08:50:21 pm »
Sweet!

Offline close2u

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Re: 3rds & Thirds ... an exploration to enjoy
« Reply #8 on: April 16, 2020, 09:23:00 pm »
Double Stop 3rds in the key of D

Next comes 3rds on the D & G strings. Within the key of D this throws up a small issue that you will be fingering the D string meaning it won’t be possible to have it ringing out as a drone so much. But you can still play with the open D string and these 3rds.
Here is the TAB for the shapes we need … hang on … they look very familiar … the same shapes as on the B & E strings but in different positions on the fretboard. Mmh. That’s interesting.



As before …

Click Here for an mp3 sound sample using double-stop 3rds in the key of D on the D & G strings

Tab for the mp3 sample:


 :)

Offline close2u

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Re: 3rds & Thirds ... an exploration to enjoy
« Reply #9 on: April 16, 2020, 09:25:46 pm »
Arpeggiated 3rds in the key of D

As before, you do not need to play these 3rds as double stops.

Click Here for an mp3 sound sample using arpeggiated 3rds in the key of D on the D & G strings

TAB for the mp3 sound sample:



Offline close2u

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Re: 3rds & Thirds ... an exploration to enjoy
« Reply #10 on: April 16, 2020, 09:26:53 pm »
Are you having even more fun? You should be having fun to the max by now – this is great stuff!
And we’ve only just begun … there is much, much more to come.


 :) :) :) :) :)
« Last Edit: March 28, 2021, 11:31:59 pm by close2u »

Offline close2u

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Re: 3rds & Thirds ... an exploration to enjoy
« Reply #11 on: April 16, 2020, 09:28:30 pm »
Have you figured out which fingers work best?
I deliberately did not prescribe which fingering to use for the different shapes – do what feels right for you. You only need two fingers at a time.

Have you tried combining all these wonderful 3rds you now know how to play?
Have you tried switching between 3rds on the B & E strings, then 3rds on the G & B strings, and the D & G strings?
Have you played some drone notes or bass note patterns on the open D string?
Have you thought to tune your low E string down a whole tone to drop D and use that as an open string for the drone / bass  lines?
Have you been using double stops and arpeggiated techniques?
Have you tried sliding both fingers up or down when the adjacent shapes use identical fingering?
Maybe you can slide up or down with one finger when it is an anchor between the two different shapes?

Try things.
Experiment.
Play.
Have fun.

Have you thought about finding a backing track with a simple diatonic chord progression in the key of D to play over?

Perhaps one of these might suit you …










 :)
« Last Edit: April 17, 2020, 09:25:15 am by close2u »

Offline sairfingers

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Re: 3rds & Thirds ... an exploration to enjoy
« Reply #12 on: April 16, 2020, 10:00:39 pm »
Aarrggh. Richard. You come up with all these cool concepts that divert me from the stuff I should be concentrating on!
Studying Intermediate Course, Folk Fingerstyle and Blues modules.
Pickin’ an’ lickin’.....😎.
Martin D28 : Gibson SG : Boss Katana 50.
Road case : https://justinguitarcommunity.com/index.php?topic=48801.0

Offline close2u

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Re: 3rds & Thirds ... an exploration to enjoy
« Reply #13 on: April 17, 2020, 09:33:16 am »
... Have you thought about finding a backing track with a simple diatonic chord progression in the key of D to play over?

Mmhh.
Have you done this with a critical listening ear?
Now that there are other instruments and a chord progression, what are you noticing as each chord comes along?
Do some of those 3rds sometimes sound beautiful and harmonious over some chords but not others?
Do some of them sound jarring and dissonant if you rest on them over a certain chord?
Mmhh.
What's going on here?

Offline sairfingers

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Re: 3rds & Thirds ... an exploration to enjoy
« Reply #14 on: April 17, 2020, 10:10:04 am »
6ths,9ths,3rds, yes I can see it’s all related. My problem is feeling like a child in a toy shop not knowing which part of the train set to play with. Eventually I hope to have the full track and wagon layout available. Wow, that was poetic!

I’m off to play Folsom Prison Blues now as that seems particularly apt for this lockdown.
(see what I did there?...trains, blues, prison!) 😃
Studying Intermediate Course, Folk Fingerstyle and Blues modules.
Pickin’ an’ lickin’.....😎.
Martin D28 : Gibson SG : Boss Katana 50.
Road case : https://justinguitarcommunity.com/index.php?topic=48801.0

Offline close2u

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Re: 3rds & Thirds ... an exploration to enjoy
« Reply #15 on: April 17, 2020, 10:29:03 am »
Thanks for this Richard.  Looking forward to seeing how this develops.

Yet more vibes for putting this together for us.
Thanks David ... there are plans for further development ... watch this space! :)

Sweet!
As a honey bee ... :)

Aarrggh. Richard. You come up with all these cool concepts that divert me from the stuff I should be concentrating on!

Ha ha. Practice routine ... then fun! :)

6ths,9ths,3rds, yes I can see it’s all related.

You're more right than you might think!!
« Last Edit: April 17, 2020, 01:44:34 pm by close2u »

Offline DavidP

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Re: 3rds & Thirds ... an exploration to enjoy
« Reply #16 on: April 17, 2020, 10:29:23 am »
6ths,9ths,3rds, yes I can see it’s all related. My problem is feeling like a child in a toy shop not knowing which part of the train set to play with. Eventually I hope to have the full track and wagon layout available. Wow, that was poetic!

I’m off to play Folsom Prison Blues now as that seems particularly apt for this lockdown.
(see what I did there?...trains, blues, prison!) 😃

I did Gordon :)

One of the pieces of advice I got from Justin when I was fortunate enough to have one of those one hour Skype sessions, was to focus for a period of time. Like you are expressing, in the conversation we talked about many wagons that I wanted to hook onto my train (see what I did there  ;) ). 

His suggestion was to pick one thing to be the focus on learning new technique.  Concentrate on it for a while maybe a few months and at the end of that period choose to either continue or switch focus.

So I focused (well as much as I focus on the new new) on the first few patterns of folk finger style. I'd mix my time on that and playing songs ... I shall call it consolidation ... others may call it just having fun rather than dedicating myself to continue to learn and grow as a player ... each to their own.

And like all these things, I eventually set myself goals to learn and record songs that used the technique. And I am still in that mode, to a degree ... though Richard posting up about Steady Thumb Blues has caught my eye ...

So maybe just pick the thing that most tickles your fancy and file the rest away ... easier said than done I know  :o

Offline close2u

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Re: 3rds & Thirds ... an exploration to enjoy
« Reply #17 on: April 17, 2020, 01:46:44 pm »
Good advice from David. If this thing floats your boat, and you are looking for a new path to follow as a focus alongside your core learning then go for it. Using 3rds is fun, user-friendly and may just open up a whole load of creative juices. As indeed it did for David. His entire backing track originated in playing around with 3rds on the two thinnest strings.  :)

Offline close2u

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Re: 3rds & Thirds ... an exploration to enjoy
« Reply #18 on: April 17, 2020, 01:48:42 pm »
ALERT – MUSICAL THEORY FOLLOWS

So far I have been referring to these pairs of notes on adjacent strings using the term ‘3rds’. Whether played as double stop 3rds or arpeggiated 3rds, the name has been the same. That has been a deliberate and consistent choice. As we now move in to exploring some of the underlying musical concepts in theory, we need a means of differentiating between two almost identical concepts - which I will do by using the terminology 3rds and thirds.

Up to now the whole emphasis has been on making the shapes of 3rds on your guitar, exploring, having fun and playing music with them. We next turn our attention to thirds as opposed to 3rds. A journey which will eventually loop right back around to 3rds again.

Offline close2u

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Re: 3rds & Thirds ... an exploration to enjoy
« Reply #19 on: April 17, 2020, 01:51:52 pm »
Thirds

A third, put simply, is an interval, a distance, between two musical notes.

In the western system of music notation, the first seven letters of the alphabet are used to provide names. If we line up these letters in alphabetical order we have:
A   B   C   D   E   F   G   

If you select any letter at random, it would be your start point - the first.
The next adjacent letter would count as the second.
The one after would be the third.

If you were to start at F or G you would need to consider that the list repeats - as these notes repeat in ascending and descending directions (higher and lower notes).

A   B   C   D   E   F   G   A   B   C   D   E   F   G   

Examples:

i] A to C represents an interval of a third

ii] D to F represents an interval of a third

iii] G to B represents an interval of a third

Now that we have a simple concept of interval naming, we need to broaden it out. Of the seven lettered notes, five have sharps / flats so we must apply the system to the totality of all 12 notes in western music.  We need to look at the note circle.

Offline close2u

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Re: 3rds & Thirds ... an exploration to enjoy
« Reply #20 on: April 17, 2020, 01:54:36 pm »
The Note Circle

The Note Circle shows all the 12 notes that exist in Western music. Moving clockwise around the circle takes us to notes higher in pitch and vice versa for anticlockwise. Note pairs E & F and B & C have no note between. Notes that can take two names are called enharmonic equivalents (G# = Ab for example).
The interval of a semitone is the smallest step on the guitar and is one fret. The interval of two semitones makes one whole tone. These two intervals make up scales.



Returning to the three examples above, the note circle highlights a crucial concept. The distances between the named pairs are not all equal.

i] A to C is a third of distance 3 semitones

ii] D to F is a third of distance 3 semitones

iii] G to B is a third of distance 4 semitones

All three intervals are thirds yet not all represent the same distance between musical notes.

Before continuing, it is vital to define that an interval of 4 semitones (2 whole tones) is a Major third and an interval of 3 semitones is a minor third.

Next, we will look at connecting these pairs of intervals to the Major scale and to chord construction.
« Last Edit: March 28, 2021, 11:34:46 pm by close2u »

Offline close2u

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Re: 3rds & Thirds ... an exploration to enjoy
« Reply #21 on: April 17, 2020, 02:11:52 pm »
The Major Scale

Knowing about the Major scale is fundamental to understanding musical ideas, structures and language. It follows a fixed pattern of intervals around the note circle. That pattern, the Major scale formula, is:
Tone - Tone - Semitone - Tone - Tone - Tone - Semitone

This is shortened to:
T  -  T  -  S  -  T  -  T  -  T  -  S

or
W  -  W  -  H  -  W  -  W  -  W  -  H
where W = Whole (tone) and H = Half (tone).

The D Major Scale is a good place to start as we have been playing 3rds in the key of D.

   T  -  T  -  S  -  T  -  T  -  T  -  S
D  -  E  -  F# -  G  -  A  -  B  -  C# -  D




Offline close2u

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Re: 3rds & Thirds ... an exploration to enjoy
« Reply #22 on: April 17, 2020, 02:49:53 pm »
Each of the seven notes in the D Major scale can be a root note for seven chords. All these chords would be within the key of D Major and all would be made up of notes from the D Major scale. This involves a little look at chord construction and a process called Harmonising the Major Scale.


Offline close2u

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Re: 3rds & Thirds ... an exploration to enjoy
« Reply #23 on: April 17, 2020, 02:54:04 pm »
Constructing a D Major chord from the D Major scale

Simple Major and minor chords are built from only three notes  -  their root (first) plus two others. These two other notes are found by counting along a scale pattern and choosing the note at an interval of a third from the root, then counting from that new note another third. This is easy to see by returning to the seven notes of the D Major scale and forming the D Major chord.

1  -  2  -  3  -  4  -  5  -  6  -  7
D  -  E  -  F# -  G  -  A  -  B  -  C#    Count D, miss E, count F#, miss G, count A, stop.
D  -  X  -  F# -  X  -  A  -  X  -  X
1  -  X  -  3  -  X  -  5  -  X  -  X

D is the Root note.
Counting a third from D takes us to F#, called the third of the chord.
Counting a third from F# takes us to A, called the fifth of the chord.

The D Major chord contains the three notes D  -  F#  -  A, the first, third and fifth.

Note:

i] The interval from first to third is 4 semitones  -  this is a Major third so the chord is D Major.

ii] The third of the chord is literally at an interval of a third from the Root note and it is the third note of the scale itself. In building subsequent chords, their third notes will be a third along from their roots but will not be the actual third of the D Major scale. This is because we take their root notes as the new first position to count from. See below.
« Last Edit: March 28, 2021, 11:36:52 pm by close2u »

Offline close2u

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Re: 3rds & Thirds ... an exploration to enjoy
« Reply #24 on: April 17, 2020, 02:55:40 pm »
Harmonising the D Major Scale

We will now work through the entire process of harmonising the D Major scale to create all seven chords within the key of D Major.

 

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