Songs that use the Augmented climb chord progression

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The enhanced chord progression, which is the progression from "" by , starts on the tonic chord and after that the leading voice of the chord climbs by semitones till we reach the 4th chord of the secret.

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0:00 "Last Night On Earth" by .
1:15 Other .
2:36 Minor 4 chord.
3:40 Double increased .
5:19 For When In My Life.
6:05 Donner.
6:50 why does this development work?
9:28 outro.

Songs that use the Augmented climb chord progression

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  1. This has always been one of my favorite chord progressions. Glad you made a video on it! 😀

  2. Awesome! Can you make a video on the Where Is My Mind chord progression?
    It’s I-vi-III-IV, though a more common variation is the same progression but starting on the vi chord, like vi-III-IV-I
    Other songs that use it are:
    – Suddenly I See — KT Tunstall
    – Cradles — Sub Urban
    – Cigarette Duet — Princess Chelsea
    – Say It Ain’t So — Weezer
    – Cake — Melanie Martinez
    – Good in Goodbye — Madison Beer

    At least those are the ones I’ve found.

    Edit: Actually another one would also be the “minor version” of the augmented climb progression, i-bVI-IV, which often has a vi° chord instead of the IV, but that’s functionally the same thing. It’s the classic James Bond progression. Other songs that use it off the top of my head are:
    – Skyfall — Adele (obviously that’s based on the James Bond theme)
    – Caravan — Duke Ellington
    – Help! — The Beatles
    – Heart-Shaped Box — Nirvana
    – In Bloom — Nirvana
    – The Avengers main theme — Alan Silvestri
    – Around the World in 80 Days main theme — Hans Zimmer
    – Atomic — Blondie
    – Monde Nouveau — Feu! Chatterton
    – Guardians of the Galaxy main theme (I think, it’s similar to the Avengers theme)
    – Sunday Morning — The Velvet Underground; Nico
    – Femme Fatale — The Velvet Underground; Nico (though both of these, much like Help! actually, use it from the perspective of the ii chord as the i)
    – and and as an honorable mention, All Star — Smash Mouth, which uses the same progression in it’s chorus but with the relative major instead of the relative minor.

  3. I am learning so much about chord progressions thanks to your videos. Keep them coming, I love them!

  4. I’d love to see a video on the augmented 6th chords… Italian, German, & French augmented 6th chords. I think you do an excellent job of presenting digestible information & it would be rad to see you cover this topic.

  5. Another great video and another cool progression! If we’re recommending progressions, I would suggest the I – bVII – vi – bVI progression (or what you might call the DVNO progression). I always found the mix of major and minor very cool!
    Edit: It’s also worth noting that some songs use a similar progression, replacing the bVI with another chord, but the major-minor sound is usually similar.

  6. Coldplay’s Coloratura also uses this progression, exactly the same as used in Last Night on Earth (in the key of D: D D+ D6 D7 G Gm), but the interesting thing is that right after it resolves back to the tonic chord of D, it repeats the progression, going to D+ after only one bar of D, giving us an irregular phrase pattern.

  7. The intro to Toad The Wet Sprocket’s ‘Nanci’ uses this progression as well, and is repeated throughout the song. The rest of that song has some pretty cool progressions as well.

  8. John Lennon’s “(Just Like) Starting Over” has an augmented climb in A. great song

  9. I would like to mention that this chord progression shares a very similar sound with I-III-vi-v-IV-(iv)-I-I as the I+ shares the Aug 5th with the III chord and the I6 chord can be considered as the vi chord. Also the minor 7th in the v chord is shared with the I7 chord. Different namings but very similar movements between the notes. It’s a very common chord progressions in Japanese music, one example that I can think of is the song here with me by d4vd, if I’m not wrong

    1. Good point, although I’m wondering if you mean to write the IV chord after III? The F major (VI) uses the A note, which continues the climb, whereas Fm (iv) would stay on the A flat note.

    2. @John C sorry my bad, I meant the sixth chord. I just edited the comment 🙂

    3. @Carlos Martínez I love how the III chord is just the I+ withe root lowered by a semitone.

  10. An interesting aspect of Something is that the intro climbs up the same chromatic line A, Bb, B, C, before the verse climbs it back down. Brilliant!

  11. It is nuts that these lessons are free! Of such value to an older lifelong music hobbyist. I wouldn’t mind seeing a whole presentation on Scott Walker (or Jacques Brel, for that matter), if relevant…

  12. I’ve always loved this Green Day song so it’s cool seeing a video on it, I’m definitely going to use this progression for myself with my band sometime. Great video as always, David, keep it up

  13. As a total music theory noob, I’d love to learn more about and hear more examples of the progression used in Michael Buble’s Feeling Good. Very similar to Santa Baby by Eartha Kitt but Buble goes down while she goes up. There’s something kind of steamy and burlesque about this that makes me want to learn more about it!

  14. Very interesting. As a guitar player who dabbles in piano this is exactly what a guitar player would come up with. Ive also played These arms of mine for 30 years and never thought about the chord progression because the guitar plays a single note line there. Thanks for all the great videos!

  15. Life On Mars was the first example that popped into my head! It’s also worth mentioning the song that inspired Life On Mars – Frank Sinatra’s ‘My Way’ – which itself borrowed the tune from a French song called Comme d’habitude.

  16. I’ve found the chord progression i / III / VII / VII to sound really good. It’s used in “Mad World” by Tears for fears and “Boulevard of broken dreams” by Green Day.

  17. I think green day has used this progression in the most beautiful way. It’s the perfect balance and the minor chord just layers it beautifully.

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