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When someone says they are playing a major scale, they would typically be referring to an Ionian Scale. However, Lydian and Mixolydian are both considered “major” in quality, and are similar to Ionian but with small adjustments.

A basic major chord, or “Triad”, consists of three notes, taken from a major scale. These notes are the first, third and fifth notes from the associated major scale. So a C major triad would consist of C, E and G. This chord can be easily extended to also include the seventh note from the scale, and thus becoming a major seventh chord.

Major scales or chords are generally thought of as being “happy”. Playing major chords, scales or songs in major keys will almost always sound happy and care-free.