#1
im kind of a noob when it comes to guitar theory and i was just wondering, how do you construct chord progressions? ive read books on it, ive googled it and ive tried to figure it out but for some reason i still cannot figure out what chords go well together. for example i know G,D,C, and Em can make a good sounding progression, but how can i know what chords will sound good together, and how can i vary the mood of chord progressions (happy songs/happy chords, sad songs/sadder sounding chords. Anyways, help would be greatly appreciated. thanks.
Quote by Xiaoxi


I am so gonna do that to my friend tomorrow. I'ma grab his wiener all day.
^This


Quote by wiggyisgreat


To be honest I'd have sex with my sister so meh.
FAIL!
#2
Well, Typically, Major chords make happy songs, Minor chords make sad songs. And 6th&7th chords make bitchin' Pink Floyd songs.

Anyway, the theory behind chord progressions is that every chord has a key. For example, the key of D Major Chord is;
d-em-F#m-G-A-Bm-A7
And so the rule of thumb, is that any of the chords in the key of D Major will sound good in a progression starting with D, or primarily using a D.

Get it?
How many guitar players does it take to change a light bulb?

Twelve. One to change the bulb and eleven to say they could do it better.

#4
alright, its making more sense, thanks
Quote by Xiaoxi


I am so gonna do that to my friend tomorrow. I'ma grab his wiener all day.
^This


Quote by wiggyisgreat


To be honest I'd have sex with my sister so meh.
FAIL!
#5
Quote by MCRpunk999
im kind of a noob when it comes to guitar theory and i was just wondering, how do you construct chord progressions? ive read books on it, ive googled it and ive tried to figure it out but for some reason i still cannot figure out what chords go well together. for example i know G,D,C, and Em can make a good sounding progression, but how can i know what chords will sound good together, and how can i vary the mood of chord progressions (happy songs/happy chords, sad songs/sadder sounding chords. Anyways, help would be greatly appreciated. thanks.


Well, chords come from scales. Let's just say, to make things simple, that you want to make a song in C major. C major has the notes:
C, D, E, F, G, A, B
Now, I know a C major chord has the three notes C, E and G and they are all in the C major scale. So now we know the C major chord works when using the C major scale. Next chord is D minor, because the notes D, F, and A make up a D minor chord.
The rest of the chords are:
(C major)
(D minor)
E minor
F major
G major
A minor
B diminished triad

You don't have to use them in any real order, just try for yourself and see what sounds good.

Now, if you don't understand why these are the chords, then you should go ahead and read the crusade columns starting from lesson 1:
http://www.ultimate-guitar.com/search.php?value=the+crusade&search_type=columns

Okay, but basically, if you want to stay simple, just use the chords from the scale. Of course there is so much more you can do, but just to start somewhere.
By the way, usually a lot of major chords together usually sound happy. Major chords mixed with minor chords often sound a little sad. And a majority of minor chords sounds a bit dark, i guess you could say (of course all of this is to simplify, again, you can't make a generalization like that).
#7
Quote by MCRpunk999
but how can i know what chords will sound good together, and how can i vary the mood of chord progressions (happy songs/happy chords, sad songs/sadder sounding chords.

Listen to a ton of music. Study songs by ripping them apart and try to pin down why the song (or part of the song) effects you a certain way. You can learn a lot by doing this because you're following your own instincts & curiosity and internalizing that, instead of just being told what sounds like what.
(plus its kinda fun)
#8
Using the relative minor might help. The relative minor of any major chord is a minor chord exactly three half steps down from a major chord. For example, you could try a C to Am transition. The relative minor for D is Bm, so that transition also sounds similar. Not all chord progressions use this, but it might be helpful. Remember, a full step is two frets and a half is one.

You might also play around with power chords. Often, power chords work well in the place of both major and minor chords. Of course, unless you have some really creative ways to make use of four or five strings in your power chord, they don't have as full of a sound as major and minor chords. Very few positions allow so many strings to be in use for a power chord, but it might be fun to play around with.

In general, slower songs that make use of many minor chords with less energy tend to sound sadder, while fast paced energetic songs that make use of mostly major chords chords tend to sound brighter.

Remember that nearly all songs use a mix of major and minor chords.

Here are some chord progressions ( Each line is a new progression)

G, D, Am, Bm
F, Dm, C, Bb
C, F, Am, G
Em, Am, C, Dm
C, Am, G, F
Last edited by Captain_GNU at Aug 19, 2010,
#9
Quote by NickGiovanni
Well, Typically, Major chords make happy songs, Minor chords make sad songs. And 6th&7th chords make bitchin' Pink Floyd songs.


Get it?



I just read this to a room full of people and got them laughing pretty good.

Sorry to dig up an old thread but this is a great quote. Thanks.
#10
Quote by KG6_Steven
The key of D major uses the following chords:

D Em F#m G A Bm C#dim


corrected
I do not want to have a signature anymore.