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SUSPENSIONS 2

Suspensions are a great way to get more out of any chords you know.

This 'Suspensions Focus' series of pages explains suspensions and hosts the lesson notes for the various Musicarta suspensions videos.

Make sure you work through the pages in order. This is Page Two of the series - start with Page One if you have not already done so.

Suspensions Exercise No.2

We move into the key of C.

The chord sequence is:

C 2-1 (root pos) Dm 2-1 (root pos) G7 4-3 (1st inv) C 2-1

You'll hopefully notice something about this exercise, either by ear or musical intuition: it's the same chord sequence as the original 'Practice Suspensions Riff', but in C instead of G.

This is where the Roman numeral system of naming chords shows its value:

Chords in G G 2-1 Am 2-1 D7 4-3 G 2-1
Roman numerals I 2-1 ii 2-1 V7 4-3 I 2-1
Chords in C C 2-1 Dm 2-1 G7 4-3 C 2-1

Once you see-and-hear this kind of internal structure (and the Roman numeral system really spells it out for you), all manner of creative musical avenues open up.

Suspensions Exercise No.3

The suspension-resolution device is 'in our head', so to speak. We expect the chord tone that's pushed out of place to spring back into position.

A chord tone can be pushed down just as easily as up. Academic music theory call these deliberately lowered chord tones 'accented lower auxiliaries'.

Here's a demonstration riff.

The chord sequence is the same as No.2, but the chord tones wobble both ways.

C 2-1-7-1 Dm 2-1-7-1 G7 4-3-2-3 C 2-1-7-1

(Warning: 2-1-7-1/4-3-2-3 etc is Musicarta-only notation.)

Notice that the D minor 'accented lower auxiliary' is a C sharp. Try it with a C natural and you'll quickly hear why!

Now go on to Suspensions Page Three.



Thanks for studying with Musicarta
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