5 Common Chord Progressions

Explore 5 common chords progressions using the Key of C on guitar!

View the full lesson at 5 Common Chord Progressions | JustinGuitar

What’s number 5?

Note that I tried to add this to the discussion section of the lesson and it wouldn’t save!

Question… How can I improvise with a drummer … A drummer doesnt play chords :confused: HELP !!!

They all sound the same

I believe all the rest are C major key chord progression, but how about number two 6-4-1-5 Am F C G, is it still in C major or in A minor key?

It’s in the key of C. Am is the 6 of C and has the same note and chords but the tonal center of the progression in C major.

Hi @Stuartw
It is a 2, 5, 1, 6 = Dm, G, C, Am

Thanks for the heads up, I have gone in to the lesson and added the missing information.
Cheers :blush:
| Richard_close2u | JustinGuitar Official Guide & Moderator

You know Justin is a talented guitarist because he just strums and it sounds amazing

Let it be uses 1, 5, 6, 4 in the key of C!

C, Am, F, G

Pretty much the whole of Monolith by T. Rex.

1-6-4-5 is also the progression for Stand By Me (think the original is in the key of A).

Thanks for the lesson. Please could you explain why the chords are in that particular sequence?


Hello @tmw.white5 and welcome to the Community.

There are several levels of answer.

Because they sound good played like that. - Not very helpful but very accurate.

Because they all belong in the same key.

Because they all belong in the same key and the 5 chord being at the end is the perfect chord to take thep rogression back to the starting 1 chord again. 5 chords by their very nature lead to the 1 chord.

There is more, deeper knowledge and theory but I hope that satisfies for the moment.

Hope that helps.
Cheers :smiley:
| Richard_close2u | JustinGuitar Official Guide, Approved Teacher & Moderator

I just started picking up how to learn guitar again, and when I heard how amazing these chord progressions sound, my love for guitar was instantly reignited. They sound so beautiful and it got me so excited to get back to learning. Thank you so much for putting out these tutorials!

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Hello @wapooshe welcome to the Community.

They sound good and that is why millions of songs use them - that’s for sure!

Cheers :smiley:
| Richard_close2u | Community Moderator, Official Guide, JustinGuitar Approved Teacher

The first chord progression reminds me of John Lennon’s ‘Stepping Out’.

What strumming pattern is Justin using here? Is it the emphasis on the 2 and the 4 pattern? I know he gets a little more varied toward the end, but it seems he is using the same pattern for all when he first introduces them. I’m a beginner and having the most problem with strumming rhythms.

Hey Michael,

I believe Justin’s using the ‘old faithful’ strumming pattern- one of most common

D DU U DU ie no downstrum on beat 3

Cheers, Shane

Am, F, C, G, Shivers Ed Sheeran, capo 2 for the standard version and capo 1 for acoustic version.


Thanks Shane. That is very helpful. I thought it might be that or the pattern I mentioned. I don’t have a very good ear or feel for strumming yet.

Appreciate your help!

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