Triad (music)

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A triad is a musical chord that consists of three notes stacked on top of each other in generic thirds. From the lowest tone to the highest, a triad consists of a root, third, and fifth, the last two being intervals of the root.

There are four types of triads:

  • A major triad consists of a root, major third, and perfect fifth.
  • A minor triad consists of a root, minor third, and perfect fifth.
  • A diminished triad consists of a root, minor third, and diminished fifth.
  • An augmented triad consists of a root, major third, and augmented fifth.

Major and minor triads are found more often than the other two types in most forms of music. Diminished and augmented triads tend to give a feeling of tension or dissonance to the music.