How’s it going guys? In today’s video I’m going to share with you my chord progression of the week.
I’ll start by playing the original version, and then I’m going to share a couple of other variations / reharmonizations, which you can do on the same chord progression.
So here is the original version:
C min 7 – B maj 7 – Bb min 7 – A maj 7 – C# min 9
The chords start on C-minor 7, and I’m using an interesting voicing. It’s called an ‘Open Voicing’ – where you skip every other note:
So you play C, skip the 3rd (Eb), play G, skip the root (C), play Eb, skip the 5th (G), and play Bb.
Next we’re going to take the bottom 5th, and we’re going to slide it down a half-step to B and F#. That is a B major 7.
Then you’re going to take both hands down and reset. Play B-Flat and F, and D-Flat and A-Flat in the right. Which chord is this?
That’s right, it’s a B-Flat-minor-Seven chord.
And then we’re going to do the same pattern. We’re just going to slide the left hand down a half-step. And which chord do we end up playing here?
This is an A-major-Seven chord. Root and Fifth in the left, C-Sharp, the major Third, and G-Sharp, the major Seventh. So those first four chords. C-minor-Seven, B-major-Seven, B-Flat-minor-Seven, going to A-major-Seven. And then here’s the nice part. You play a C-Sharp-minor-Nine chord. This is how I’m voicing it, but you can voice it any way you like. We could voice it just simply with the same voicing: Root, Fifth, Third, Seventh. Or you could switch these the other way around and play Seventh, Third, that would be nice. However, I’m adding the Ninth and the Fifth. And this is one of the most common voicings I will play for a minor Nine chord, or a minor Seven chord. This is C-Sharp-minor-Nine.
In the first variation on this chord progression, the first three chords are going to stay the same. C-minor-Seven, B-major-Seven, B-Flat-minor-Seven, but then instead of playing A-major-Seven, we can change this to an A-dominant-Seven. However, if we just play the literal chord voicing it doesn’t sound great. So really, we’re going to revoice it, and play this voicing, which has G, the minor-Seventh, B the Ninth, C-Sharp the major Third, and F-Sharp the 13th. And then this chord resolves really nicely to the same C-Sharp-minor-Nine chord. And I’m going to voice it like this: I’m just going to play an E-major-Seven chord in my right hand, with C-Sharp on the bass. And that’s a simple way to think of a C-Sharp-minor-Nine chord. Just C-Sharp and then build a major-Seven chord from the minor-Third.
For the final variation, I’m going to apply the Kenny Barron 11th voicing to each of these chords. The Kenny Barron 11th voicing is root, Fifth, and Ninth in the left hand, or just build a stack of Fifths. And then in the right hand, you build a stack of Fifths from the Third. So if it’s a minor chord, then you build a stack of Fifths from E-Flat, the minor-Third. Which would give you B-Flat, the minor-Seventh, and F, the 11th. And that’s a really nice voicing for a C-minor-11. Or, if the chord was C-major-Seven, then you would do the same left hand, but you would build a stack of Fifths from the major-Third, which would give you B, the major-Seventh, and F-Sharp, the Sharp-Four. We’re going to apply these two voicings to the same chord progression. Every time there’s a minor chord we’ll play the minor version, and every time there’s a major chord, we’ll play the major version. First chord is C-minor-Seven. Start with this. Now, the next chord is B-major-Seven, and we’re just going to slide the left hand down by a half-step. And the right hand stays in place. And when the right hand stays in place, you end up playing the major voicing anyway, because this is just a stack of Fifths built from the major-Third. And then we’re going to reset for the B-Flat chord. B-Flat-minor-Seven, how are we going to voice it? That’s right, stack of Fifths in the left hand. B-Flat, F, and C. And then a stack of Fifths in the right hand from the minor-Third of B-Flat, which is D-Flat. That gives you this. And then we’re going to do the same trick one more time. Just move the left hand down by a half-step. And the right hand stays in place. So, that’s the first four chords. And then for the final chord we have C-Sharp-minor-Seven. Stack of Fifths in the left hand, and stack of Fifths in the right hand from the minor-Third. Or you could voice it up here, if it sounds a bit muddy down there for you. So, that’s the final variation.
Thanks for watching – I hope you enjoy this new progression, and you can download the sheet music below: