If a full chord would be minor, then you want to play a minor 3rd at each of those points. The same is true of major thirds. In E minor, the first, second, fourth, and fifthintervals would be minor, and the third, sixth, and seventh intervals are major: Eminor, F# minor, G major, A minor, B minor, C major, D major.The tonality of major or minor is immediately apparent, which can be useful for making a noticeable key change, such as from E major to E minor. If you were to dothis with fifths in the rhythm, the change wouldn't be noticed at first. In addition, if you want to play an unexpected sound, such as using an E major chord where an Eminor one is expected, using a third easily accomplishes this.Like the fifth, thirds can also be played with the octave included (Example 4). Unlikethe fifth, a third has more than just added brightness this way, for the character ischanged somewhat.This shape is unusually difficult to move around the guitar.As mentioned earlier, the third is less stable than a fifth and sounds less desirable thelonger it is held. One trick for using it successfully is to play it briefly. While thismight seem too limiting, consider that many metal players have a palm-muting style,the interval is momentarily sounded in between muted 8th-notes, meaning it never hasthe chance to deteriorate. On the repeat, the interval is held open longer to provide aclearer example of the sound.As a final note, thirds become muddier and less useful lower on the guitar, but thiscan be overcome with the above technique.Alternating IntervalsSwitching between thirds and fifths can help provide variety within a riff and betweentwo music sections. One simple trick is to take the same chord succession and do ittwice: once using fifths and once with thirds. Another is write two sections of musicwhere the first interval is different. This helps creates separation between musicalideas.CodaThough chords and fifths are frequently used, the addition of thirds to your repertoirewill give you other options, which is always a good thing. This simple technique can be the foundation for an empire of ideas.CounterpointCounterpoint is defined as two or more simultaneous melodies that maintain their independence while still forming a harmonic relationship. A single instrument likeclassical guitar can perform counterpoint with three or four lines seeming like a single part. However, rock guitarists seldom do this for a variety of reasons, but that doesn'tmean it can't be done.