The most common type of chord in Western music. It consists of a root tone, the note a major third above it, and the note a minor third above the second note. It also makes up the first, third, and fifth degrees of the major scale. Often notated just by the root tone (e.g. the C major chord would be named just C) or some other rarer ways (Cmaj, CM, Cmajor).

The notes included in the major chord for each note:

NAME |    TONES
-----+------------
Cb   |Cb  Eb  Gb
C    |C   E   G
C#   |C#  E#  G#
Db   |Db  F   Ab
D    |D   F#  A
D#   |D#  Fx  A#
Eb   |Eb  G   Bb
E    |E   G#  B
E#   |E#  Gx  B#
Fb   |Fb  Ab  Cb
F    |F   A   C
F#   |F#  A#  C#
Gb   |Gb  Bb  Db
G    |G   B   D
G#   |G#  B#  D#
Ab   |Ab  C   Eb
A    |A   C#  E
A#   |A#  Cx  E#
Bb   |Bb  D   F
B    |B   D#  F#
B#   |B#  Dx  Fx
(where b = flat, # = sharp, and x = double sharp.)

Of course, any of these chords can be inverted, or spelled out in a different order. The root position of a major chord uses the first tone first, the first inversion uses the second tone first, and the second inversion uses the third tone first. For example, the root position of the C major chord can be spelled C-E-G, the first inversion can be spelled E-G-C, and the second inversion can be spelled G-C-E.

Some chords created by adding tones to the major chord are the seventh chord, major seventh chord, ninth chord, major ninth chord, sixth chord, or added ninth chord. In jazz, the phrase "major chord" is taken to mean the major seventh chord.

cf. minor chord, diminished chord, augmented chord

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