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The Best Way to Use Pedal Point in Your Chord Progressions

Songwriters can be forgiven for looking for new and exciting chord progressions. There’s a fear that if you use a progression that’s been used before, it will sound either boring or overused, and lacking in originality. The truth is that as long as the chords are properly supporting the notes of the melody, even mundane […]

Finding Alternatives to the Standard I-IV-V-I Progression

The typical 3-chord song has been the workhorse of early rock and roll. Go back to the 50s, and it’s the mainstay of most songs. By 3-chord songs, we’re talking usually about this progression: I  IV  V7  I  (C  F  G7  C) And then, of course, the writer might throw something else in, particularly in […]

Building Song Energy With the Dominant Note

The dominant note (the 5th note of a key) holds great potential energy, and can be used to propel the harmonic energy of a song forward. Here’s how. ____________ Download “The Essential Secrets of Songwriting” 6-eBook Bundle, and get back to the basics of why hit songs sell. _____________ The dominant note is the 5th note of the […]

How Pedal Tones Make Chord Progressions Sound Great

Written by Gary Ewer, Senior Instructor, Dalhousie University, from “The Essential Secrets of Songwriting” website. • Follow Gary on Twitter • “The Essential Secrets of Songwriting” 6 e-book bundle is available now at a 50% savings! ________________________________ I was a child of the 70s, and loved (and still do) the music of Chicago, Genesis, Yes, Alan Parsons […]

Getting More Power From the Dominant Note

Written by Gary Ewer, Senior Instructor, Dalhousie University, from “The Essential Secrets of Songwriting” website. • Follow Gary on Twitter • Check out “The Essential Secrets of Songwriting” 6 e-book bundle ______________________ As a songwriter, you’re usually looking for ways to control song energy, usually building it as the song progresses. We know that there are […]

A Pedal Point Adds Glue to a Wacky Chord Progression

Written by Gary Ewer, from “The Essential Secrets of Songwriting” website. Follow Gary on Twitter There are many ways to add a bit of variety to your chord choices. The problem is, the more you stray from the tried and true, the more confusing it can be to the listener. A pedal point is a great […]