Learn to Harmonize with Drop2 Major Voicings

An important skill for an pianist learning to improvise is to know how to form melodies and harmonize those melodies with various Drop 2 Major chords. If you want you playing to sound "current" then having a solid grasp on Drop 2 Major Chords is Key. In this post we will only discuss how to form Drop2 Chords using the A Major Triad.

Part 1

In the first video, we learn that the first step to having nice sounding harmonies is to build very easy melodies starting from only 1 note. This step is important because if the one-note melody doesn't sound right or pleasing to use then the accompanying chords will not sound right either.

Right Hand Melody

Right Hand Melody

After we have a great melody we move to harmonizing that melody with only ONE note. This is important and contrary to how many beginning pianist are taught. Normally pianist are taught to play melody with right hand and chords in the left.However, this method results in a very textbook, choppy sound. In addition, In addition, no live performing pianist plays actually plays that way.  *Keep in mind we are mostly harmonizing with Drop2 Major Chords for this lesson

Left Hand Harmony

Instead of playing a melody with your right hand and chords with your left, discard that thinking altogether. Learn to harmonize a melody using the notes within a Drop 2 chord. The hands should exist as one unit, both complementing each other

After we learn to harmonize with the melody with our left hand it is time to determine what chord Quality you want on each note. The diagram below shows each the chord that is paired with each note in the melody.

Corresponding Chords

Part 2

In this second video we examine how to form various types of Drop 2 Chords, as well as multiple other ways to voice major chords

Let's see how many ways we can play an A Major Triad (A-C#-E)

Chord Name
Chord Spelling
A Major Triad
A Major Triad (Drop 2)
A Major Triad (add 2)
A Major Triad (add 2) (Drop 2)
A Major 7th, (Root Position)
A Major 7th, Drop 2 (Root Position)
LH: E-A,    RH: C#-G#
A Major 7th, Drop 2 (1st Inversion)
LH: G#-C#,    RH: E-A *perfect 4ths makes easy to pull off quickly 
A Major 7th, Drop 2 (2nd Inversion)
LH: A-E,    RH: G#-C# *closest to root sound
A Major 7th, Drop 2 (3rd Inversion)
LH: C#-G#,    RH: A-E *use for dissonance)
  • Cory says:

    Man this is dope thanks

  • Chris says:

    Nice movement, mr. Wilson. Can you show the same demonstration by applying Diminished Drop 2 a passing chords between the Major and Minor Drop 2’s?

    I really like your lessons.

    God bless!

    • sean says:

      Yes, although this post started with Major Drop 2 voicings we will also show the same with the other types as well, diminished, minor, in future posts, etc…

  • Sherman says:

    Thanks Sean! I’ve been working on Drop 2’s regularly and this a good booster.

    • sean says:

      Thanks Sherman, this is a topic which folks can’t get enough of. Eventually we will need to hit the other qualities as well and show how they are used

  • Sean A. says:

    I needed this, you are awesome wilson

  • Arthur says:

    This has a great melody in the first part. I love how you in the second part you built up the different chords from a triad to a Major seventh chord. Great videos.

  • mariokirk10077@gmail.com says:

    Definitely going to memorize all of these. I can’t wait to try dominant 7 flat 9 chords and put them together

    • sean says:

      You definitely got the right idea man. And honestly, it won’t take that long to memorize: couple weeks if you’re consistent!

  • Gady says:

    Great,that’s new for me

  • Chris says:

    Very nice sound Sean. Thank you for sharing.

  • leon.lightfoot.ll@gmail.com says:

    Great lesson!

  • This is mind opening and hand opening ,great way to think ,God bless you’re impacting us in Uganda

  • Eneojo John says:

    Wow amazing,I wish I have the opportunity to paid for you course would have love it,

  • emmanuel kalejaye says:

    How do you know which major 7 drop 2 or drop 2 sounds good. I’m trying to follow the melody of the song with the diff drop 2s but its like I’m guessing which sounds good.In a church setting guessing will throw off the singer so I am confused on which drop 2 to use at what times

    • sean says:

      You shouldn’t be guessing in real time. This is what your practice is for. You play the version of the Drop2 that puts the melody on top

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