::: Four Chord Songs :::

 
       
 
Jul 12, 2017, 06:10 PM

Take a look at this link:

http://www.chordpulse.com/four-chord-songs.html

I think that this could help beginners in songwriting
and those who are experimented.

Have fun!

 
     
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Guy E. Trépanier Joined Dec 05, 2005
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Jul 13, 2017, 08:39 AM

Hi Guy,
I have something similar built into my keyboard instrument. I use it all the time when I compose new songs. When I started writing songs I only needed 3 or 4 chords. Good idea. It looks like it’s easy to use.

All the best
Robert

 
     
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Robert Baitinger Joined Jun 01, 2006
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Jul 13, 2017, 09:37 AM

And there is a lot you can do with 4 chords

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5pidokakU4I

...every once in a while, I get in the mood or so…and start to play..

http://www.songcycle.org

 
     
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Martin G Joined May 27, 2009
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Jul 13, 2017, 10:05 AM

You mean you’re allowed to have a fourth chord in your songs?!

Seriously, Martin, that’s a wonderful video. To me, it shows that most great songs are all about the melody. The chords are really just the floor on which it dances. It can sometimes feel like what you’re doing is too simple and you’re tempted to overcook the fancy chord progressions. Of course, I might just think that because simple is all I can actually do :)

Guy, have you tried that program?

 
     
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Gavin Sinclair Joined Dec 02, 2014
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Jul 14, 2017, 09:39 AM

All of those songs you quote are dated Guy,  as you say you are an amateur enjoying yourself

MAJOR TO RELATIVE MINOR - MINOR THIRD - FIFTH That sequence

was used in the fifties to great effect


The only thing new songwriters could learn from that is dont do it

As for putting words to songs of French origin I dont see the point

because there are very few French Composers alive today that can

write great songs,  where as once upon a time thirty’s and forties

there were some beautiful songs of French Origin

Celine Dion is my favourite singer ever but her best hits are by American and

English writers   I know FRANCE well because I have a second home there

where I do lots of business     Canada has a much more healthy scene for young

writers New writers could learn a lot by studying those songs   Restricting one self to four

chords can be okay but at the end of the days its all about the individual melodic phrasing    

and whether it catches the emotion of the song not about how many chords we use

 
     
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Peter Kristian Joined Jan 11, 2008
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Jul 14, 2017, 10:40 AM

Ringo Starr tells the story of coming to George Harrison with a Song with only two chords, “Octopus’s Garden”.

George told him, “It takes seven chords to play a Song.”

The number of chords ‘necessary’ varies with the purpose. I recently heard a young woman strum a chord once and sing a line of Melody, strum it or another chord once, and continue the Song. She was only using the chords as reference points. An accompanist, once they knew the Melody, might find many nuanced chords to fit into the accompaniment, implied by the notes in the vocal Melody.

A virtuoso guitarist once told a young Songwriter friend of mine, “Oh. You’re doing ‘that’ with your voice.” He meant, I think, that while that vocalized notation worked in the Melody and relevant to the key, she wasn’t playing a chord to accommodate it. His expertise enabled him to discern that chording could support those notes, while her amateur creativity and sense of the emotion of the Lyric and Melodic delivery simply ‘went there’.

There will always be another song to be written. Someone will write it. Why not you? http://www.garyeandrews.com

 
     
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Gary E. Andrews Joined Apr 12, 2005
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Jul 15, 2017, 03:08 PM

Peter, all those songs in the video that Martin posted were outdated because that video was from 2009. But I can confirm that many of today’s songs consist of 4 chords as well, at least the chorus does. Guy noted that the tool he mentioned might be good for beginners. I fully agree with him.

I once wrote a song with just one chord. It even attracted the attention of a big radio station here.
http://soundclick.com/share.cfm?id=10987430

All the best
Robert

 
     
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Robert Baitinger Joined Jun 01, 2006
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Jul 17, 2017, 03:48 PM
Gary E. Andrews - 14 July 2017 10:40 AM

Ringo Starr tells the story of coming to George Harrison with a Song with only two chords, “Octopus’s Garden”.
.

Couple of years ago I was giving guitar lessions for beginners… I thaught them two chords per lession and gave them a song, so they could practice and have fun. Well, first song they all had to learn was: “Lady in black” by Uriah Heep…. E-minor. D-Major :)

Sometimes two chords are enough :)

...every once in a while, I get in the mood or so…and start to play..

http://www.songcycle.org

 
     
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Martin G Joined May 27, 2009
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Jul 17, 2017, 06:22 PM

Here is a little song with 2 chords: I=D, 2m=Em (can be played in any key)

This is a perfect 8 bars song with a perfect structure: AABA (2 bars for each musical phrase).
Main theme played 2 times (4 first bars)  AA or verse-verse
Little contrast variation (2 bars)  B or bridge
Return to main theme (2 bars)  A or verse

Squirrel, Squirrel (anonymous)

(I)Squirrel, squirrel /(2m)shake your bushy (I)tail / (5_3_5_3_/24323__/) A verse
(I)Squirrel, squirrel /(2m)shake your bushy (I)tail / (5_3_5_3_/24321__/) A verse

(2m)Wrinkle up your (I)little nose / (2342345_/) B bridge
(2m)Hold a nut be-(I)tween your toes / (2342345_/)

(I)Squirrel, squirrel /(2m)shake your bushy (I)tail / (5_3_5_3_/24321__/) A verse

Have fun!

[ Edited: 17 July 2017 06:31 PM by Guy E. Trépanier]
 
     
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Guy E. Trépanier Joined Dec 05, 2005
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