guitarist - songwriter

Getting a Weird Chord Progression Working: 2 Methods

Most songs in the pop genres use simple chord progressions. “Simple” means that they target the tonic chord — the chord that represents the song’s key — and make that tonic chord sound like “home.” These sorts of progressions: C-F-G7-C (I-IV-V7-I) C-Am-Dm-G-C (I-vi-ii-V-I) C-Dm-G-C (I-ii-V-I) These are all in the key of C major, and […]

Adele

An Idea For Songs That Use the Same Chord Progression For Verse and Chorus

Songs that use the same progression for the verse and chorus aren’t unusual, but when you write that kind of song you need to think about other ways to create contrast between verse and chorus. Most songs need that contrast, because it’s contrast that keeps audiences interested on a musical level. And chords often play […]

guitar - songwriting

Getting Creative With Chord Progression Charts

Consulting a list of chord progressions can be a great thing for songwriters who just want to explore new sounds and find new directions for their music. And since chord progressions usually can’t be protected by copyright, you’re free to take them and use them however you want. (See my collections here.) But if all […]

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, […]

Mike Rutherford, Genesis

Building Musical Energy With a Dominant Pedal

In a movement from a classical symphony, the music isn’t divided up into verses and choruses as is typical for pop songs. You’re more likely to see reference to sections called “1st theme”, “2nd theme”, “transition”, “development”, “coda”, and so on. With pop songs, you get a definite feeling that the basic energy of the music changes […]