Rate This Lesson
Rate from 1 (poor) to 5 (best)
Send Feedback

Making Chord Progressions

Chris Adams (188) · [archive]
Style: Theory/Reference · Level: Beginner · Tempo: 150
Pages: 1 2 3

if you are a guitarist, especially a punk guitarist, your music will probably be built around chord progressions. Because of this, you should know how to construct them, as throwing together a few chords will almost never work. You have to have chords that flow together.

In every key there are 4 that can be used, and they can be found using the same formula. (go to my lesson about key signatures if you are not sure how they work)

The first chord is a major chord of the first note in the scale. For example, if you are in the key of C, the first chord would be C.

The second chord is a minor chord of the sixth note in the scale. For example, if you are in the key of C, the second chord would be A minor.

The third chord is a major chord of the fourth note in the scale. For example, if you are in the key of C, the third chord would be F.

The fourth chord is a major chord built on the fifth note in the scale. For example, if you are in the key of C, the fourth chord would be G.

Here is a chart to show you all the commonly used chords in the different keys.

Key-----Chord 1-----Chord 2-----Chord 3-----Chord 4-----

A------------A-----------F#m--------------D-----------E-----------

B------------B-----------G#m--------------E-----------F#----------

C------------C-----------Am---------------F-----------G-----------

D------------D-----------Bm---------------G-----------A-----------

E------------E-----------C#m--------------A-----------B-----------

F------------F-----------Dm---------------Bb(flat)----C-----------

G------------G-----------Em---------------C-----------D-----------

Remember, these chord progressions don't have to go in any order. For example, if you are in the key of C, you don't have to go C,Am,F,G. Also, you don't have to use all 4 of them. It's just that those are the ones you get to pick from. You can go C,F,G or G,Am,F or Am,C,G or C,G anything! Of those 4 chords you could probably make like a million chord progressions so... The chord progressions have been used thousands of times in rock.

Here is an example of a chord progression in the key of A that goes A,D,E,A. (the 1st, 3rd, 4th and 1st chords in that key)
Making Chord Progressions