Piano: Playing Power Chords (Fifth Chord)
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Piano: Playing Power Chords (Fifth Chord)

Guitars often use "Power Chords", a Power Chord or simply called as "Fifth Chord", the Fifth Chord is a chord consisting of only the root note of the chord and it's fifth. To put it simply, the third is removed from the Chord to make it a Power Chord or Fifth Chord. Now Power Chords or Fifth Chords are commonly used in Rock Music, to give that "rocky feeling" in the song. A song popular for using these chords is Smoke On Water by Deep Purple, the opening riff was made using power chords.

Guitars often use "Power Chords", a Power Chord or simply called as "Fifth Chord", the Fifth Chord is a chord consisting of only the root note of the chord and it's fifth. To put it simply, the third is removed from the Chord to make it a Power Chord or Fifth Chord. Now Power Chords or Fifth Chords are commonly used in Rock Music, to give that "rocky feeling" in the song. A song popular for using these chords is Smoke On Water by Deep Purple, the opening riff was made using power chords.

Although a Power Chord or Fifth Chord cannot be considered a chord because it does not contain a minimum of three degrees, it is commonly accepted as a chord in some genres of music, because the power chord or fifth chord possesses the harmonic quality of a typical chord.

Aside from Deep Purple, early heavy rock bands such as Black Sabbath, Led Zeppelin and also helped to popularise power chords.

A Power Chord or Fifth Chord is named as Root Note and 5, so C5 Chord would be a power chord. The notes of this chord would be the C note and G note in that order, noting that the E note is missing; lacking this note makes it neither major nor minor a notable feature in power chords or fifth chords.

These chords also made their way to the Piano, The notes are: (if using the C5 Chord) C note on the Left Hand and the C note with the G note with the Right Hand. To make it more “powerful” it is recommended to play an octave with the Left Hand, and the Right Hand should play the Root Note and the Fifth. The most powerful sound you would get is by playing the notes: Root Note, Fifth, Root Note with the Left Hand and Root note, Fifth, Root Note with the Right Hand. Playing it this way would limit you to playing only the chords.

Inversions also play an important role in playing Power Chords, for the Power Chord; there is only one inversion which is: Fifth, Root Note and the Fifth, on the Left Hand, and the Fifth, Root Note and the Fifth on the Right Hand. The Piano offers various ways of playing these power chords, you could also try playing Fifth, Root Note, Fifth on the Left Hand and Root Note, Fifth, Root Note with the Left Hand and vice versa.

To get that guitar feeling on the piano, try to play the Left Hand’s notes with a steady “8th” note count.

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Comments (5)

Isn't it, in piano , the left hand is used for the bass, while the right hand is for the melody and chords? I guess it would sound better if the left hand played the Root note and the 5th note. That's what i do. :D

It depends when you're playing a "full chord" or not, yes you are correct using the Root Note and the Fifth as the bass, but usually when this is used, the right hand commonly plays a normal chord (triads) and not a power chord.

Excellent article and very informative...thanks for posting

I remember those younger days when I studied playing the piano with my sister, I got caught with the shy-guy image because its an all-girls class, so I stop. Nice work on the piano series.

Hummm . . .

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