A Diminished 7th Piano Chord
The Notes in an A Diminished 7th Chord
The root is the bottom note of the chord, the starting point to which the other notes relate. The root of an A Diminished 7th chord is A.
The Min 3rd
The minor third of an A Diminished 7th chord is C. The minor third is up three half-steps from the Root.
Finding C from A step by step:
- Start on: A
- Step 1: move up to Bb
- Step 2: move up to B
- Step 3: Land on C
- Bb is a minor second above A.
- B is a major 2nd above A.
- C is a minor third above A.
The Maj 6th
The major sixth of an A Diminished 7th chord is F#. The major sixth is down three half-steps from the Root (a minor third down).
In diminished chords, the major sixth is also known as the diminished seventh. For the purposes of this tutorial, we'll be learning it as the major sixth, since it's easier to consider it separately than the other two sevenths, the major seventh (M7) and minor seventh (m7)
Finding F# from A step by step:
- Start on: A
- Step 1: move down to G#
- Step 2: move down to G
- Step 3: Land on F#
- G# is a minor second below A.
- G is a major 2nd below A.
- F# is a minor third below A. The maj 6th is down a minor third? Confusing, right? The note F# is down 3 half-steps from A, but up 9 half-steps from A:
The Inversions of A Diminished 7th
How to find A Diminished 7th with my three-finger-method
This is the method taught in my book "How to Speed Read Piano Chord Symbols"
Step 1) Use the Fourth
Find the Root and the Fourth up from the Root. (See my tutorial on finding fourths).
Step 2) Move the right hand down
Move the root a minor third down (three keys to the left on the piano) and the other note (the fourth) a whole-step to the left (two keys down on the piano).
How to Find 7th Chords with Nate's Three Finger Method
- Major 7th chords: bring both fingers down a half-step
- Minor 7th chords: bring both fingers down a whole-step
- Dominant 7th chords: bring the Root down a whole-step, the fourth down a half-step
- Diminished 7th chords: bring the Root down a minor third, the fourth down a whole-step
If you would like to learn more about my method, pick up "How to Speed Read Piano Chord Symbols".