Master Chord Progression

Master the chords around each scale shape!

These are the final exercises focusing on chords around the major scale (Ionian).

Every exercise has a play list with 5 positions per video, once you played through all these, your hands will think before your head!

If you are practicing modes and arpeggios at the same time, start incorporating these exercises with each other.

For example, play all arpeggios in the same position as you just done your chords in.

The aim with all master exercises is to tie a spiders net of music theory together for your hands.

The clearer the connection between: Chord – Chord Number – Pentatonic – Mode – Arpeggio – Chord Extension is, the better.

Here’s the first exercise, moving backwards, down the scale.

Chords down the major scale

Same concept as in Advanced Chord Progression, but now we go backwards:


This enables us to deeper connect each position of the major scale to the 7 chords around it.

It is absolutely vital that you know the location of every chord around every scale shape.

Play through each exercise to a click, pushing the BPM.

Chords through the cycle of 4th

This exercise does not use only perfect 4th intervals.

Between chord IV and VII we get a #4.

The full exercise reads: IIVVIIIIIVIIIV

Call out the chord numbers as you go along, for maximum effect, sing each root note!

The Cycle of 4ths in songs

Both I Will Survive and Still Got The Blues use the full movement, starting on chord VI.

If you have been practicing and singing along at the same time, you can now try this:

As you hear a new song for the first time; sing the root notes of the chords you hear, aiming to hear the position.

For example, if you are certain you hear the I chord and then a movement of a 4th up, then you would have to be on chord IV.

Similarly, if you hear chord VI and then move a 4th up, you are on chord II.

In full use this will enable you to hear a song and work out the chords at first listen, without an instrument!

To gain the ability to hear a chords position is far be more useful than perfect pitch!

Learn more in the Master Guitar Course.

Chords through the cycle of 3rd

Lets take a look at how to play through all the chords around a major scale shape using the cycle of 3rd.

This movement is also very common, for maximum effect; sing the root notes as you play the exercise.

The Cycle of 3rd within the scale shape exercise reads: IIIIVVIIIIIVVI.

Notice how the third interval is sometimes minor, sometimes major.

Which chord is major and which is minor?

By noticing if the chord you are moving from is minor or major you will find the next chord.

For example, moving from chord V to VII is a major third, from VI to I is a minor third interval.

These chords are also parallel minor and major.

There would be matching minor and major pentatonic scales here as well.

You must see all these connections.

Practice extensively, after this exercise there is only one more to go!

Final Master Exercise!

The master exercise combine all previous exercises in one long exercise, when you can play this the connection between:

Chord shape – Chord Number – Major Scale interval and Mode will be crystal clear.

For maximum results sing along with the numbers in correct pitch.

Full Master Exercise

The full master exercise reads:

I – VII – VI – V – IV – III – II (Down the scale)
I – IV – VII – III – VI – II – V (Cycle of 4ths)
I – III – V – VII – II – IV – VI (Cycle of 3rds)

When you can play the full exercise, as demonstrated in video you can move on. Move on to Master Modes and Master Arpeggios that is!

If you want step by step instructions, turn to the Master Guitar Course.