Four chords are all you need for a hit song...

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Four chords are all you need for a hit song...

Post by wontgetfooledagain on Thu Apr 23, 2009 8:51 am

Check out this video... it shows how the same chord progression is used over and over in pop music...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qHBVnMf2t7w

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Re: Four chords are all you need for a hit song...

Post by TigersEyeDowsing on Thu Apr 23, 2009 9:01 am

I can't hear it (no sound) but here's something that bugs me about modern pop music... If it's even real instruments the music is horrid (not to mention the unintelligent lyrics) with no beat.

If you don't eat your meat you can't have any pudding.

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Re: Four chords are all you need for a hit song...

Post by wontgetfooledagain on Thu Apr 23, 2009 9:06 am

Yeah, I agree. There is some good stuff out there... but for the most part you have to search it out. I love indie (independent that is..).. music, and I can get lost on myspace for hours searching for good artists.. they are out there, but sadly.. don't get heard by most people.

This video shows how the same formula is used over and over... and apparently .. it works.

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Re: Four chords are all you need for a hit song...

Post by sacrificialgoddess on Thu Apr 23, 2009 9:17 am

Okay I got this one. It's a one chord, a four chord, and a five chord. What's the last one? Smile
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Re: Four chords are all you need for a hit song...

Post by wontgetfooledagain on Thu Apr 23, 2009 9:47 am

sacrificialgoddess wrote:Okay I got this one. It's a one chord, a four chord, and a five chord. What's the last one? Smile

The progression being shown on this video is...

I V vi IV

Depending on the key it would be like this..


C G Am F
G D Em C
E B C#m A

etc...

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Re: Four chords are all you need for a hit song...

Post by TigersEyeDowsing on Thu Apr 23, 2009 10:01 am

B flat is my friend. Very Happy

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Re: Four chords are all you need for a hit song...

Post by Genocon on Thu Apr 23, 2009 1:14 pm

This is why I don't listen to the radio.
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Re: Four chords are all you need for a hit song...

Post by TigersEyeDowsing on Thu Apr 23, 2009 1:33 pm

We had our only oldies station in the area that I loved...then they went to "classic hits" and added some 80's stuff..it was alright so I kept on...now it's a "Mix station", as if the other 5 mix stations weren't good enough - they all have the same playlist. So I got an MP3 player and we're happy.

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Re: Four chords are all you need for a hit song...

Post by Genocon on Thu Apr 23, 2009 1:57 pm

The radio stations around here get more and more generic all the time, too. Everything here is either country or an 80s/90s/00s hits station.

Fortunately the Portland NPR and community radio stations come in nice and clear.
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Re: Four chords are all you need for a hit song...

Post by TigersEyeDowsing on Thu Apr 23, 2009 2:58 pm

Thank gods we have Interwebs.

I listen to Atlanta's "The River" live stream. Google it. Wink

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Re: Four chords are all you need for a hit song...

Post by Genocon on Thu Apr 23, 2009 3:18 pm

TigersEyeDowsing wrote:Thank gods we have Interwebs.

I would hate music if it weren't for the internet, because I would likely never be exposed to stuff that I would actually like. Or maybe I just wouldn't know better.

My favorite internet station is The Blue Room on Rhapsody. Also going to Last.fm and playing the "deep house" tag is a favorite, if not a little repetitive and sometimes not very deep (more like electro or tech house, bleh).
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Re: Four chords are all you need for a hit song...

Post by AutumnalTone on Thu Apr 23, 2009 3:47 pm

Heck, if you play blues, you only need three chords. I just wrote five blues tunes for our drum corps show this year, so I've blues progressions oozing out of my skin. Once you get the I, IV, and V chords in a key, you're golden.

So, take a progression and team it with interesting comp patterns, a memorable melody, a great hook, and worthwhile lyrics...and you'll have a great song. Whether it'll be hit is another question entirely.

For those playing along at home, a 12-bar blues progression:

I / IV / I / I / IV / IV / I / I / V / IV / I / I
(In the last measure, try a I IV or a I V to lead into the next chorus)

Here's a tune I wrote for the show. The midi file was output from the scoring software, so the dynamics control is off. There's no solo over the solo choruses, so you'll have to imagine one. And it's all piano voicing, instead of bugles in G. Still, it gives an idea of how the tune sounds.

Oh, it's a swing tune, in addition to being blues. Take three chords and swing. Lather. Rinse. Repeat.

http://FileHost.JustFreeSpace.Com/778CowtownBlues.MID
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