Harmony

substitutions | extensions / polychords | inversions | quartal | contrapuntal elaboration of static harmony


INVERSIONS

The use of inversions is a long-established technique. Generally, inversions are used to provide smooth bass lines and complimentary motion between the melody and bass. Complicated jazz harmonies increase the number of inversions possible and add to the number of chord choices from which the jazz writer may draw. Experiment with chord voicings using different bass notes. Write a melody note and a bass note and see how many possible chords can be spelled which contain those two notes. Challenge a friend to do the same.

Inverted chords are written with a diagonal slash between the chord and the bass note - C/Bb = C triad with Bb in the bass.


In the example below, the G bass note is the 5th of the C7 chord and the 7th of the A7 chord.

Isotope

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Click here to stop.


Here, the Bb is the 9th of the Ab sus chord and the D is the 5th of the G sus chord.

Isotope

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Below, the F is the Major 7th of the Gb #11 chord.

North Rim

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