Ever since we launched our interval training app for iPhone and iPod, RelativePitch, we’ve had people asking us for an app to learn chords in the same way. Well, the wait is over!
Today we’re releasing a new ear training iOS app, called Chordelia: Triad Tutor, which is designed to get you up to speed with the most important types of chord in a fun, simple way.
Chordelia: Triad Tutor teaches the four core triad chords. If you’ve studied our Pitch & Harmony series you’ll know that triads are three-note chords, and the four types of triad form the basis of all commonly-used chords in Western music. Learning to recognise triads is an essential fundamental part of any musician’s ear training.
Focus on the fundamentals
It’s easy when studying harmony to get carried away with the wide variety of weird and wonderful chords you find in music – suspended chords, sixth chords, the many types of seventh chord, extended chords… Not to mention the guitarist’s favourite: power chords. On top of all that you’ve got block chords, arpeggiated chords, chord inversions, chord voicings – and then on to cadences and chord progressions!
Making ear training easy is our goal around here, and so with our first chord training app, we decided to follow the KISS principle and keep things simple.
Rather than throwing every possible type of chord (and chord-related skill) at you at once, Chordelia: Triad Tutor teaches just the four types of triad chord. You start off by learning to tell the four types apart, when they’re “spelled out” as arpeggios, one note at a time. Then, as you progress, you learn to recognise them as “block chords”, with all the notes played together. Finally you can really challenge yourself by learning to recognise the chords in different inversions, and even try to tell which inversion it is!
Why train with Chordelia: Triad Tutor
Chords are fundamental to harmony, and harmony is essential to all but the simplest of music. Learning to understand, appreciate and recognise particular types of chord is a core part of any musician’s development – and as a bonus, it’s a great way to enhance your enjoyment of the music you listen to every day!
Even experienced musicians can struggle with chords if they haven’t spent time practising. Was that a major or minor chord? Sounds simple, but put in a musical context, it can be frustratingly hard to tell! Wouldn’t it be great to never have to worry about that kind of fundamental distinction again?
After a few short sessions with Chordelia you’ll find you can easily recognise major, minor, augmented and diminished triads when you hear them in music. What’s more, you’ll have a solid basis for recognising more complex chords too, since these are all based on triads (with notes added, removed or altered).
Once you’ve studied further with Chordelia you will know these triads back-to-front and inside-out, recognise them immediately and always be able to confidently say which type and inversion is being used.
What about all that theory?
There’s a vast body of music theory which deals with harmony – and again, it tends to be overwhelming to all but the most academic of musicians.
Fortunately there’s not much you actually need to know to understand harmonies aurally and develop the skills mentioned above. In fact, if you’ve already been training with RelativePitch or reading about intervals and chords on this site, you’re halfway there!
Chordelia: Triad Tutor features detailed, illustrated lessons to introduce you to all the key concepts, and make sure you know enough theory to develop your understanding of triad chords. You’ll learn what triads are, how they’re constructed, and why they sound the way they do. Later you’ll find out about triad inversions, and the more advanced types of chord built on triads.
You’ll get benefit from any previous music theory or interval training you’ve done, but neither is essential: the app teaches you everything you need to know.
When can you get started?
If you have an iPhone or iPod, you can download Chordelia: Triad Tutor from the App Store today!
We’re excited to launch this new app, and help musicians learn to recognise chords in the same way RelativePitch has taught thousands to recognise intervals!
As always, we’d love to hear what you think, especially if you’ve tried the app. Please leave a comment below, or email us with your thoughts.
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