Broken Chord

Pronunciation: BROE-kin kord

What is a Broken Chord?

A broken chord is a chord whose notes are played into a pattern or series of notes. The notes can either be played in an ascending or descending order.

Key Takeaways

  1. A broken chord is a chord that is broken apart and played into separate notes.
  2. It is sometimes used interchangeably with arpeggio but the difference between the two is the over-ringing that occurs with a broken chord.
  3. Broken chords are useful for learning and recognizing the individual notes in a chord.

Understanding a Broken Chord

A broken chord is sometimes used interchangeably with an arpeggio. Arpeggio is a kind of broken chord which is a musical technique where notes are played in a sequence, one after the other.

However, it is important to note that while an arpeggio is played without over-ringing, a broken chord lets the notes of the chord ring together.

Broken chords are mostly used in mellow, slow, and rhythm guitar work, and is a classic way of learning and practicing keyboard chords.

Related Terms

Chromatic A chromatic scale is a 12-pitch scale, each being a semi note or half-step, which are above or below the last note. more

Arpeggio Arpeggio is a musical theory also known as a broken chord. more

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