I, V, VI minor, IV

These last few weeks I’ve been busy transcribing (listening to, then writing the music for) a bunch of pop songs for the summer recital. Have you ever listened to the radio for awhile, and suddenly all the songs start to sound the same? That’s what I noticed when I was writing your music; many pop songs sound similar because they use the same chord progression. If you don’t know what a chord or chord progression is, think of a pattern that is repeated in many different songs.

The most popular chord progression (musical pattern) is:
I, V, VI minor, IV (1, 5, 6 minor, 4)

Watch this video. The band only plays the above chord progression.
How many “different” songs do you recognize?

If you know your chords and want to play along with the video, start on E Major (I).
Watch the second video and learn how to play I, V, VI minor, IV.

At your next lesson, tell me the number pattern of this chord progression.

Play the chord progression on the piano with E Major as the first (I) chord.

Transpose this chord progression into a different key. (Start on any chord other than E Major.)

How many songs did you recoginize? Name them below.


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