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CHORD CHEMISTRY Introduction PLEASE READ THESE PAGES BEFORE GOING FURTHER This book deals primarily with chords and their application. There are charts of many different kinds of chords given on pages 17-54 , and although learning many nice inversions or different ways to play the same chord is essential to a good guitarist, by itself it is nothing. It is far better to know only a few nice chords and know how io use them than to know thousands of chords without knowing where to put them or how they relate to each other. However, neither situation is as desirable as having your cake and eating it too, that is, knowing thousands of chords and how to use them. ‘Every chord given in this book has a useage and it is hoped that with patient study, you will learn how to decide on the proper kind of chords for the proper situations, although you will probably continue your learning on this subject for many years to come, as there is always something new to be discovered with chords. Some chords that are not too pleasing by themselves are excellent when used with the right combination of other chords. Example: E>m-z/9 (If you do not understand how to read this diagram, refer to page 5 ) Play this chord To the person who does not know how to use this kind of chord, it may sound very strange if not downright crummy. But notice the way it blends with the following chords « t itt So the point is that if you play a chord and it does not sound good to you, there is an extremely good chance it can be used effectively somewhere, as you will see. Next point — if you do not know how to read music, it would be to your advantage to learn, as ‘there is much valuable information to be derived from printed music for guitar; also the studying of music written for other instruments such as piano, organ, violin, clarinet, etc., can be a big help. ‘There is another good reason for learning how to read music: there are some extremely beautiful pieces of music that you could not play unless you know how to read them, because they are not available on record, or if so they are extremely difficult to pick up by ear. ‘You might be suspecting that all this is leading up to telling you that you have to be able to read music in order to get through this book. This is only partially true. There are only a few sections where the knowledge of reading notes is essential. You will find that most of the sections require nothing more than the desire to learn, and the strength of will to follow through with this desire. ‘The first half of the book deals mainly with musical theory and there are very few actual playing exercises given. Be patient and try to absorb a few ideas at a time: you need not dwell too long at first on all of the thoaghts given in the first part of the book unless you wish to. Instead, you might try absorbing a few ideas and going on to a section that involves more playing; then you could keep referring back to the idea pages (such as polytonal chords, synonyms, etc.) and absorbing a few more ideas at a time. However, if any point in this book is confusing to you, there is a good chance that the point is explained in an earlier section of the book, so go back and check it out. Also be prepared to hhave to read some things more than once in order to fully absorb and understand them; a Keyword here is PATIENCE, Another keyword for deriving the maximum benefit from this book is EXPERIMENTATION. If an idea is given, ask yourself how many other ways you could play the same idea. For instance, if an example of the chord change C G7 were given and 2 diagrams were listed as suggestions, realize they are Just that — suggestions. There are hundreds of ways you could play C G7 (that is where the reference ‘charts on pages 17-54come in handy) and likewise, with almost any idea given in this book. Also ask yourself where you might use any idea that is given. For instance, you might like the sound of a chord or chord pattern given in the section on moving voices, and you might fit it into a blues. Use your imagination on things like this; however, be careful not to delude yourself into thinking something is great just because it is different. The desire to be different can be a healthy thing as long as it does not become more important than the desire to play music that is enjoyable to listen to. It is hoped that this book will help you to increase the amount of enjoyable music in the world. ‘od Kaeanh-