Electronic Musician

Circle progressions

So, circle progressions - what are they all about then? Surely they’re just sequences of chords that go round in a loop, repeating over and over? Well, not exactly – the term circle refers to the fact that the root notes of the chords in the progression follow the circle of fifths. A circle progression is one where the root notes between chords are separated by intervals of a fourth or a fifth. Going clockwise around the circle gives us root notes that are a perfect fifth apart, while traveling anticlockwise gives us intervals of a perfect fourth. Another name for the movement between root notes of the chords in a progression is ‘root motion’.

Circle progressions

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