(Disclaimer: This is a revision of one of my old articles already posted on the Steem blockchain with the intention of building my Engrave blog)
Why a big lesson on chords? Well , to me , chord knowledge is one of the most important points to strengthen in order to build a strong foundation for improvisation . Your single-line melodies will not sound more interesting than your chordal vocabulary . No melody will make sense unless put over a context ( a chord , or a sequence of chords ) , so it is no small matter to know harmony and it's applications.
Ok , so let's start with the lesson . What is this Maj7 drop family that I am talking about?
The ''Maj7'' corresponds to the chord quality . To me there are 5 main families : Maj7 , Dominant 7 , Minor 7 , Minor 7b5 and Diminished. I covered this in a previous lesson , so if you want to read a little more about those , here it is :
The ''drop2'' corresponds to the ''voicing'' of the chord . A voicing to put it simple is how the note distances are arranged from one to the next , different intervals ( or distances ) between the notes will generate different voicings , though the notes may be the same.
So .. What is a drop2 Chord?
A drop 2 chord is a derivation from a closed-voicing , meaning that we are going to drop one of the voices down an octave , in this case , the 2nd note going from top to bottom. Don't get confused , with this little diagram it will be easier to understand.
A ''4-way close'' or just closed voicing is a chord in which the notes will be in the least amount of distance from each other. So .. if we arrange Cmaj7 with this in mind we can get the following possibilities:
C E G B (root position) E G B C (1st inversion) G B C E (2nd inversion) B C E G (3rd inversion)
All notes are a third apart , except between the B and C , that are a second apart . This is the closest distance between the notes you can get in this chord context.
So... let's do a ''drop 2'' version of the first one :
If we have :
C E (G) B (The G would be the 2nd note , counting from top to bottom... so it gets dropped an octave)
Then after dropping the 2nd note we get this order:
G C E B