Chord Progression Theory

Guitar You're playing piano and wondering to yourself "what can this chord lead to next?" Well, that's where chord progression theory comes in. It'll help you realize which options you have next when you are improvising or composing.

Due to the popularity of the list of chord progressions, I decided to come up with a theory behind the chord progressions which allows greater freedom that I believe when utilizing chord progressions.

Chord Progression Theory
  • The I chord can go to any chord, but commonly goes to the IV or V chord.
  • The ii chord leads to the IV, V, V7, or I chord.
  • The iii chord leads to the IV chord.
  • The IV chord leads to V7, I, or V chord.
  • The V chord leads to the I, IV, or vi chord.
  • The vi chord leads to IV, ii or V chord.
  • The viiĀ° chord leads to I, or iii chord.

I hope the above chord progression theory helps you in your composing. Again, it's based on numerous popular chord progressions found in this list.List of Chord Progression.

If you take the time to memorize this list, I believe that you will be able to come up with chord progressions on the fly. Of course, once you attain enough skill, you'll be able to create your own chord progressions that do not hold to any rules. But a foundation will help you if you're a beginner.

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Chord Progression List - Extensive

Learn common chord progression with lists of two chords, three chords, four chords, five chords and six chords. The list of chord progressions below will help generate ideas for song compositions.

If you are confused by the Roman numeral notation, click Roman Numerals and How to Play a Chord to learn more about them or you can find their definitions online.

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