Music Theory, Songwriting, The Muse, Writing

Saturday Songwriting: I Needed a Myth

Sometimes things can be virtually the same, even though they look pretty different. That’s the case with the C and G chords on the guitar. They are built in the same way, but use different notes. Also, their fingering on the fretboard appears pretty different because of the how the guitar is tuned.  

This week, why not play around with just the G and C chord in a song? 

What happens if you only use two chords, G & C major, in a song anyway? Some thoughts that may or may not be useful to you if you decide to use just these two chords: 

1) There are five notes in these two chords.  C, E G, B, and D, which are Do, Mi, Sol, Ti, and Re, in Solfege.  

2) These two chords share only one note, G, or Sol. 

What happens when you use a note in the melody that’s in the chord, what about one that isn’t? 

What happens when you use a note that isn’t in either chord, but is in a scale the chords share? (This might be F, or A (Fa or La) in the key of C.  (In the key of G, the notes would be A or F#, (La or Fi in solfege) 

Stretching things a bit further—what if you were to write a melody in the the relative minor of one of these chord (Am for C, or Em for G) 

These are all just questions and experiments. If you like, work with one that feels comfortable to you. Simply playing around with only two chords could be plenty.   

The Prompt:

Here’s a link to Ann James Massey’s “The Connoisseur”

The Musical Idea:

Here’s a downloadable pdf of the worksheet above:

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