In part I, we found the chords for Raga Kalyani using the relationship between the modes of the major scale. Lydian scale has the same notes of Kalyani. In this article, we see how to use the one note difference that Lydian has with the major scale to find the chords of Raga Kalyani. The chords of the major scale are essential study for any student of harmony. It is good to learn chords for ragas using the chords of the major scale as a reference. We will also see how 'changing the note' and 'using the chords of the Lydian mode' both lead to the same results, giving us a better grasp of how things work.

Relation between Kalyani and the major scale

Raga Kalyani has the same notes as the Lydian mode (4th mode of the major scale.)

The only difference between the Lydian mode and the major scale is that the lydian has a sharp fourth while the major scale has a perfect fourth. Below, we will find the chords of the major scale and change the perfect 4th note to the sharp 4th note wherever the 4th note of the scale occurs.

Knowing this relation between the chords of the major scale and the lydian is useful in practice also, because once you know how to play the chords of the major scale, you can play the chords of Kalyani by just one finger shift.

Perfect to sharp

Table shows the diatonic chords of the C major scale and the notes in each chord.

C Dm Em F G Am Bdim

The C major scale and C lydian scale has just one note different. The perfect 4th of the C major scale becomes a sharp 4th in the C lydian scale.

C major scale: C D E F G A B C

C Lydian scale: C D E F# G A B C

Change F to F# in each of the C major scale chord that has an F note to get:

C D Em F#dim G Am Bm
C E G D F# A E B G F# A C G B D A C E B D F#

Note the type of chords we get for each position: Major – major – minor – dim – major – minor – minor

We will use the above sequence to get the Kalyani chords from any pitch: C, Db, Eb etc

Chords of the lydian mode

Lydian is the 4th mode of the major scale.

Chords of the C major scale are: C major, D minor, E minor, F major, G major, A minor, B dim

Chords of the F lydian scale are (start from F): F major, G major, A minor, B dim, C major, D minor, E minor.

Note that the sequence of the type of chords we got here is same as the sequence got when we sharpened the 4th note in each chord where it appears.

So by changing the 4th note on each chord, or by finding the lydian mode chords from that root, we get the same chords. Just a double check.
For more about chords: The Chord Code.

Transposing the chords to any root / pitch

  1. Write down the major scale from that root
  2. change the 4th note from perfect fourth to sharp fourth (sharpen the note)
  3. Use the sequence of the type of chords. (Major – major – minor – dim – major – minor – minor)

If you can directly write the lydian scale from any root, you can skip 1 and write the Lydian scale including the sharpened note.

Example: Chords for Kalyani from Db

  1. Major scale from Db: Db Eb F Gb Ab Bb C
  2. Sharpen the 4th note to get the lydian:  Db Eb F G Ab Bb C
  3. Apply the sequence of the type of chords on each note position: DbMajor – Ebmajor – Fminor – Gbdim – Abmajor – Bbminor – Cminor

The exact chords for the Lydian scale

Which chord would represent the lydian scale well, sounding the characteristic lydian sound? We could choose a few notes from the lydian scale to start with and then add all the notes in the scale to see what chord that would form.

Starting point

Usually, notes in the 1st, 3rd, 5th and 7th positions of a scale is a good starting point to make chords for the scale.

The lydian scale has a major 3rd interval and a major 7th interval. Along with the root and 5th, we get the following intervals:

Root – major 3rd – 5th – major 7th

These are the notes in a major 7th chord. The major 7th chord could be the chord for the major scale, or any scale with a major 3rd and major 7th notes in it.


How do we make the major 7th chord to represent lydian scale?

What is the difference between the major scale and the lydian scale? Just one note: the major scale has a perfect 4th note while Lydian has a sharp 4th.

To differentiate the chord of the lydian scale from that of a generic major scale, add the sharp 4th note to the chord we got before.

Add the #4th to the major7th chord.

We get the major 7th #4th chord

C major 7th #4th can be written as CΔ11 or CM7#4 or Cmaj7#4 etc. This chord is simply called the Lydian chord – the chord from the first note of the Lydian mode.

So if we need a single chord to represent Raga kalyani, we could try the Lydian chord which is the major 7th sharp 4th chord.

Chord using all the notes of the lydian scale

Major 7th #11 has the notes: root – major 3rd – fifth – major 7th – #4 (5 notes)

There are only 2 more notes in the lydian scale, which are not in the chord: major 2nd (9th) and major 6th (6th or 13th)

Let us add these two notes to the lydian chord (major 7#11)

Adding major 2nd to a major 7th chord  (without the #11 note) gives a major 9th chord.

Adding major 6th note to the major 9th chord gives the Major 13th chord.

Adding the #4 note to the major 13th chord gives the Major 13 #4 chord, which is the chord we get when we use all the notes of the Lydian scale.

The notes of kalyani are equivalent to the major 13th #4 chord.


Find out the diatonic chords of the major scale from any pitch of your choice. Note the 4th note of the major scale. Note the note you get when you sharpen the fourth. See which chords you get when you change the 4th note wherever it appears in the major scale chords. If you play an instrument, play the major scale chords. See how one finger shift will give you the chords of Lydian, which can be used as the chords of raga Kalyani. Use the example given in this article as a guide.