Looking to spice up your chord progressions? Why not borrow a chord or two from a different mode or scale? Borrowed chords are a tried-and-true way to add an unexpected touch to songs. Read the post.
While major and minor chords get all the attention, don’t neglect music’s lovely diminished chords. They can spice up your boring chord progressions and add drama to your songs. Read the post.
Have you got the music in you and want to start writing songs? Here’s a no-nonsense primer to getting your songwriting career started. Read the post.
Being excellent at your instrument takes a lot of work, and being a stand-out vocalist is rare, indeed. But combining the two? Let’s learn from 10 singers who also play bass. Read the post.
Here’s a fascinating look at how Stephen Stills took an unreleased leftover and turned it into the enduring classic, “Southern Cross.” Read the post.
Ever sit down to learn a song and find that no matter what chord you play, it’s just not right? We investigate two mystery chords in two classic songs. Read the post.
Power chords might not be chords, but they’re powerful intervals — especially when mixed with distortion. Read the post.
In music, a mode is a formula for creating a musical scale. The Lydian Mode’s formula (W–W–W–H–W–W–H) can give your melody or progression an uplifting and yearning feeling. Read the post.
While the mediant (iii chord) isn’t as structurally integral as the tonic, dominant, or subdominant, employing its major variation can provide an unexpected surprise that will make listeners’ ears perk up every time. Read the post.
While it might be difficult to keep a song interesting if you limit it to one chord, it can help create tension, highlight your lyrics, or drive a hypnotic groove. Read the post.
A pedal point can make a standard progression more interesting or ground a complex progression in something familiar. Read the post.
These songs from decades past show us that you can do a lot with just a little. Let’s explore the magic of the bVII-I progression and how two chords can make a song. Read the post
Let’s explore some common — and some of the more obscure — alternate guitar tunings to inspire you to write your next musical masterpiece. Read the post
Suspended chords work as substitution chords, can smooth out chord progressions, and add tension to your music. Here are some great examples of how to use suspended chords in your songs. Read the post
For some extended guitar chords — like a fully voiced thirteenth — there are more notes in the chord than there are strings. That’s where slash chords come in … with a little help from your bassist. Read the post