Suspended Chords


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The Stradella bass accordion can play a lot of chord types, but some are pretty much in the “oh, that's hard” catagory. Suspensions fit this catagory.

A suspension is a chord which is used in many different styles of music to create a tension or disonance. It is usually resolved after a few beats into the third.

There are two suspended chords you will find in sheet music: A sus2 or sus4. In both cases the third of the chord is omitted and replaced by the second or fourth. A suspended second replaces the third with the second; the suspended fourth replaces the third with the fourth. The sus2 is much less common than the sus4 and it is common to omit the “4” when notating the sus4.

A Csus2 consists of the notes C, D and G and the Csus4 consists of the notes C, F and G. There are also minor, seventh and ninth versions of both chords, but they are seldom used in contempory music.

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So, what buttons do I push?

  • Using the bass notes F, C and G (all in the same row, easy!) will give a “correct” Csus (same as a Csus4) chord. If you are doing a bass pattern try alternating a single C with a combined F and G.
  • The bass notes F, C and D (just skip the G) gives a Csus2. Again, alternate between C and F plus D for a lighter sound.
  • A C bass note in combination with a Bb major button (almost) returns a C9sus4 (aka C9sus) chord. This works since we are looking for the notes C, D, G, Bb and F. The Bb and D are the seventh and ninth and Bb major is Bb, D and F. The missing G is the fifth which we don't care much about anyway.

Got something to add to this list? Send me a note and I'll add it here.

Web Design--Bob van der Poel This page was last modified on 2024-03-21