Piano and guitar - chords

3 Great Ways to Use a Flat-VI Chord In Your Major Key Progressions

A flat-VI chord is a major chord built on the lowered 6th degree of a major scale. In C major, the 6th degree is A. Lowering it gives you Ab, and a major chord built on that note gives you the 3-note chord Ab-C-Eb: the so-called flat-VI. In pop music genres, the flat-VI chord quite […]

Piano and Guitar - creative chords

Simple Hacks For Better Chord Progressions

If you’re bored with your chord progressions, you’re likely to opt for throwing them out and creating ones that are more creative. The problem with that approach is that you can wind up with chords that just don’t work well together, all for the sake of finding something more interesting. If you’re serious about songwriting, […]

Guitarist songwriter

Using a Minor i-Chord In Your Songs’ Progressions

Most of the time when you switch a major chord to a minor chord, you’re using what’s called a modal mixture, or “borrowed chord.” The most common switch is the change from a major IV-chord to a minor iv, like this: I  vi  IV  iv  I  (C  Am  F  Fm  C) It adds a nice moody […]

Guitar mic

Working Flat-III, Flat-VI, and Flat-VII Into a Major Progression

First, a Bit of Basic Theory… For any given major key, there are 7 chords that occur naturally, one built on each note of the scale. In the key of C major, that gives you these chords: C Dm Em F G Am Bdim According to the very popular HookTheory website, the 3 most commonly […]

Guitar - songwriting talent

Borrowing Chords From the “Opposite Mode” To Give a Progression New Life

Even if you don’t have a strong background in music theory, you likely know that some chords just sound right together, while others don’t. For example, in the following chord progression, it’s hard to make any kind of sense out of the F#m chord; it just sounds odd… too odd for most common genres, you […]