Welcome to the latest installment of Chord by Chord, a series designed to develop your understanding of harmony and the fretboard. In the previous lesson we reviewed the I– ii– V– I progression in G significant. This time we’ll look at the I– IV– V7– I progression, likewise in G.
As previously, we’ll begin off with a little theory, but feel free to avoid it and go directly to playing the chords. Let’s begin with the G major scale, which is displayed in Example 1. To review, you can get the I chord by beginning with the first note of the scale, G, and including B and D (Example 2a). Likewise, begin on the fourth note of the scale (C) for the IV chord (Example 2b) and the 5th note (D) for the V7 chord (Example 2c). Bear in mind that considering that D7 is a seventh chord, you’re including one extra note, the flatted seventh, in this case C.
The I– IV– V7– I is among most typical developments in popular music. Example 3 shows it using open chords. Keep in mind that I’m beginning with a specific open-G fingering that allows me to keep my 4th finger in location on string 1 for the C chord that follows. At the same time, I’m just moving my third and second fingers over one string set to get to the C chord, producing an effective transition.
Example 4 reveals the development using closed voicings, with the chords rooted on both strings 6 and 5. Likewise with barre chords, in Example 5, the roots are all on string 6. Bear in mind that you don’t have to play all six strings– try just the bottom or leading 4, for instance.
Example 6 provides us some compact three-note voicings on the leading 3 strings, which can come in handy when you desire a good clean noise and do not need to play the bass notes. You might have observed that while a D7 chord consists of 4 notes, the voicing here includes just 3. But it still works, as it consists of the chord’s defining notes– the significant third (F#) and the flatted seventh (C).
You need to now understand how to play the I– IV– V7– I utilizing different voicings in the key of G significant. One classic song that utilizes this progression is Patsy Cline’s “A Church, A Courtroom, and Then Bye-bye.” Next time we’ll continue our expedition of chord progressions with the I– vi– IV– V7– I in G.