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Power Chord

In music, a power chord is an interval, which serves the function of a major or minor chord. It consists only of three pitches with one doubled at the octave, separated by a perfect fifth or its inversion the perfect fourth.

Power chords are commonly used in various forms of rock music including hard rock, metal, and punk, as the sound of a power chord is not dissonant when distorted, for example by a fuzzbox (distortion pedal) when played on an electric guitar. It is used less commonly in other types of music but became much more common after the rise in popularity of metal during the 1980’s. Examples of power chords with C as the root note are C4-F4, C4-G4, C4-F4-C5, and C4-G4-C5 (where the numbers after each note name signify the octave). Most commonly the three-pitch class power chord is played.

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