Nashville Number System Lesson

1 4 5

Difficulty: beginner

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For starters, the simplest, most helpful chord progression to study could be 1, 4, 5. The first, fourth, and fifth chords in a major key are the foundations of blues, country, and rock and roll. Many pop chord progressions are also centered around these three chords.

In a major key, all three of these chords will be major. In the Nashville Number System, all numbers are assumed major unless notated otherwise.

In the key of C Major, made up of of the notes C (1), D (2), E (3), F (4), G (5), A (6), and B (7), the 1, 4, 5 chord progression consists of C Major, F Major, and G Major.

C Major

321

In the key of C Major, this chord is "1"

F Major

134211

In the key of C Major, this chord is "4"

G Major

2134

In the key of C Major, this chord is "5"

In the key of G Major, made up of the notes G (1), A (2), B (3), C (4), D (5), E (6), and F# (7), the 1, 4, 5 chord progression consists of G Major, C Major, and D Major.

G Major

2134

In the key of G Major, this is the "1"

C Major

321

In the key of G Major, this chord is the "4"

D Major

132

In the key of G Major, this chord is the "5"