The E major triad, more commonly called the E major chord or simply the E chord for short, consists of the notes E, G-sharp and B. Here it is on the treble clef staff:
… and on the piano:
Let’s see it on the bass clef staff:
Here is the above chord on the piano:
As a major triad, the E chord consists of a major third plus a minor third. The interval from E to G-sharp is a major third, while the interval between G-sharp and B is a minor third.
If the root of the E chord – E – is the bass note (i.e., the bottom note), then the chord is in root position:
If the third of the chord – G-sharp – is the bottom note, then the chord is in first inversion:
If the fifth of the chord – B – is the bass note, then the chord is in second inversion. (B is called the fifth of the chord because the interval from the root E to B is a fifth.)
If the notes of a chord are played one after the other, the chord is said to be arpeggiated. Here are the standard fingerings for arpeggios of the E chord. Make sure you learn these fingerings!
(If you don’t understand the below notation, you should start with my How to Read Sheet Music course.)
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