Chord progression

a succession of musical chords

A chord progression is a part of music, made up of several chords played one after another. Chord progressions are important for people who write songs or play musical instruments that can play chords, such as the guitar. Chord progressions are used in many types of music. How a piece of music sounds has to do with its chord progression.

Relation to the circle of fifths


The circle of fifths is an idea in music theory that has to do with keys. It also has to do with chord progressions. If you have a song with the chord progression G, C, D, you can see those chords are right next to each other in the circle. So if you want to play the same song in a different key, you can use any other three chords right next to each other. This works for any chord progression.

Common chord progressions


One of the most used chord progressions is based on the first, fourth and fifth notes of a major scale. In the key of C, these are the C, F, and G chords. This progression is used in many simple songs. Since these songs have only three chords, they are sometimes called three-chord songs. Many country, blues, rock, pop and punk songs are three-chord songs.