What is a chord? Major and Minor Chords

A chord is a combination of three or more different notes that are played at the same time.  There are many different chords, all of whose names are a description of the notes that they contain. Three note chords are known as “triads”.  The two most common are Major Chords and Minor Chords.

A “C Major chord” contains a root (C), a major third (E), and a fifth (G). The sound of a major chord is
often described as having a bright or happy.

A “C minor chord” is just like a C major chord except that, instead of a major third it has a minor
third.  It would look like this:  root (C), minor third (C flat), fifth (G).  Minor chords are many
times described as having a dark or sad sound.

It is true of all major and minor chords, that we can tell if a chord is a “major chord” or a “minor chord” by looking at whether it contains a minor third or major third.  If a chord doesn’t contain either it is not
classifiable as either minor or major.