Chapter Six

Chord Progression

We know that A minor is the relative minor key to C major. Using the fourth and fifth intervals we also know that chords in C are C (I), F (IV) and G7 (V). The chords in A minor are A minor (I), D minor (IV) and E7 (V). Does this pattern continue for other major keys? Absolutely. The following are the chords in the major keys and their relative minor keys. Try experimenting with playing chords in a major key and its relative minor key.


Major Chords

Relative Minor Chords

Major Key

I

IV

V

Relative Minor Key

I

IV

V

C

C

F

G7

A minor

A minor

D minor

E7

G

G

C

D7

E minor

E minor

A minor

B7

F

F

B flat

C7

D minor

D minor

G minor

A7

D

D

G

A7

B minor

B minor

E minor

F sharp 7

A

A

D

E7

F sharp minor

F sharp minor

B minor

C sharp 7

B flat

B flat

E flat

F7

G minor

G minor

C minor

D7

E flat

E flat

A flat

B flat 7

C minor

C minor

F minor

G7

A flat

A flat

D flat

E flat 7

F minor

F minor

B flat minor

F minor

E

E

A

B7

C sharp minor

C sharp minor

F sharp minor

G sharp 7

B

B

E

F sharp 7

G sharp minor

G sharp minor

C sharp minor

D sharp 7

D flat

D flat

G flat

A flat 7

B flat minor

B flat minor

E flat minor

F7

G flat

G flat

C flat

D flat 7

E flat minor

E flat minor

A flat minor

B flat 7

F sharp

F sharp

B

C sharp 7

D sharp minor

D sharp minor

G sharp minor

A sharp 7

The above chord progressions are strong progressions. Progressions are strong if they move as follows.

a) Down a fifth or up a fourth.

Midi file

b) Up a second or down a seventh.

Midi file

c) Down a third or up a sixth.

Midi file

d) Any chord which follows the tonic is a strong chord progression.

Midi file

e) The progression IV - I is strong. Thus, the above example meets two criteria for strong progressions.

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