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Kingsmen Louie Louie cover

Writing

Kingsmen Louie Louie cover

How to unlock I-IV-V progressions

The chord trinity known as I–IV–V is one of the most useful theoretical concepts for any musician. The I–IV–V is a skeleton key for countless songs in folk, country, rock, blues, and beyond, revealing the basic similarities of, say, “Louie Louie,” “Ring of Fire,” “Johnny B. Goode,” “Helpless,” “Three Little Birds,” “I Still Haven’t Found...

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Understanding song form

Adapted from The Complete Singer-Songwriter (Backbeat Books). Click the cover for more info. Beneath all the nuances of melodies and lyrics, most songs are built from the same basic parts—some kind of sequence of verse, chorus, bridge, and so on. For writing a song, learning to play someone else’s song, or communicating with other musicians,...

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Chord progressions in major keys

Adapted from The Complete Singer-Songwriter Chord progressions are the engine of songwriting. The melodic or lyrical hook may be what lodges in people’s heads, and an insistent beat may dominate the mix, but the chord progression is what makes everything move. By itself, a chord is just a static thing—a few notes stacked together—but a group...

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John Doyle on writing songs vs. arranging traditional tunes

Writing, of course, has a very creative aspect, but there’s a creative aspect in arranging—I’d be a historian if I wanted just to mark it down. I wouldn’t see the point in doing [a 1="traditional" 2="tune" ] if it wasn’t creative in some way; I want to bring out my love of the song, to...

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Copyright 2019 Jeffrey Pepper Rodgers