Creating good Phrygian chord progressions is not as hard as it seems. Learn this method and make up your own chord progressions for any mode.
Theory VS Practical Application
In this lesson from Modal Harmony Workshop, we will see how we can create beautiful Phrygian chord progressions by combining the appropriate chords. Even though we will need to go into some theory here, don't worry if you miss something. Just go on and pay the most attention to the practical application 💪😎🎸.
Many times it's easier to first see these things in action. Then it becomes much easier for you to come back and fully understand the theoretical explanation 👍.
7 Chords - Endless Modal Chord Progressions
There are 7 available chords in each major scale. In C major for example the chords are:
- C - Dm - Em - F - G - Am - Bdim
If you prefer seventh chords then our list becomes:
- Cmaj7 - Dm7 - Em7 - Fmaj7 - G7 - Am7 - Bm7b5
It's important to understand that any one of these chords can become the tonic chord of a modal chord progression. If I make the Cmaj7 the tonic then my chord progression will be in C Ionian. If I make the Dm7 the tonic then my chord progression will be in D Dorian. Watch the video above to learn more about this.
So the same 7 chords can be used to make progressions in the 7 relative modes, as long as I emphasize the correct one. If you want to see the available 7 chords (and corresponding modes), you can do that by downloading the Modal Chord Progression PDF Cheat Sheet from another lesson in this series.
Example Phrygian Chord Progression
Using the 7 chords listed above, here is an example E Phrygian chord progression. The 3 chords used could be a part of a D Dorian or a C Ionian chord progression, but by emphasizing the Em7, I'm making sure that the listener hears E Phrygian as the mode of this musical passage.
Watch the video above to learn more about this concept. You'll be able to make your own Phrygian chord progressions in no time!
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