Let’s look at how to play a Csus (“C suspended”) chord on the piano. Once we know the pattern for building suspended chords, we can apply that pattern starting on any note.
What Are Suspended Chords?
There are two main types of suspended chords: sus2 and sus4.
To play a sus2 chord, play the first, second and fifth notes of the matching major scale.
To play a sus4 chord, play the first, fourth and fifth notes of the matching major scale.
Suspended chords are similar to major chords. Major chords are built using the first, third and fifth notes of the matching major scale, but suspended chords change the middle note. Instead of using the third note of the matching major scale for the middle note of the chord, a sus2 chord uses the second note of the scale, and a sus4 chord uses the fourth note of the scale.
How to Play a Csus2 Chord on the Piano
Let’s look at how to play a Csus2 chord.
C – D – G
You can use this pattern to build any suspended second chord. Just play the first, second and fifth notes of the matching major scale.
How to Play a Csus4 chord
Now let’s look at how to play a Csus4 chord on the piano. To play a Csus4 chord, we’ll play the first, fourth and fifth notes of the C major scale:
C – F – G
You can use this pattern to build any sus4 chord. Just play the first, fourth and fifth notes of the matching major scale.
If you see a chord labeled Csus, without a number after it, it usually indicates a sus4 chord.
Other Chord Types
Some of the other chord types you can learn are:
Now you know how to play a Csus chord (sus2 or sus4) on the piano!
Suspended chords sound really wonderful on the piano. I like using them in place of major chords, whether or not they’re called for.
Suspended chords may sound like they “leave you hanging”, and you may want to resolve them back to the matching major or minor chord (they can be substituted for both), but it’s not necessary. I leave them just the way they are quite often, because I like them so much.
I hope you enjoy playing these beautiful chords!