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  #1  
Old 05-16-2020, 07:42 AM
Spawndn72 Spawndn72 is offline
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Default Clapton "Let it Rain" chord progression question

I know just enough theory to be dangerous.
So please bear with me.

The versus are:
D Am C G

I believe the song is in the key of D major

So where does the C chord fit in?
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Old 05-16-2020, 08:00 AM
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raysachs raysachs is offline
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I don't know much theory, but with the D, Am, C, and G, I figure using the I-IV-V convention, the song could either be in G or D with the (with Am or C being the somewhat extraneous chord. But OnSong tells me that with the D, Am, C, G chord progression, the song is in the key of A. If you play it with A, Em, G, D, it's in E.

IOW, beats the heck out of me...

Like I said, I don't know much theory.. Really fun song to play though!

-Ray
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Old 05-16-2020, 09:01 AM
MC5C MC5C is offline
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The C is a Cm, in the notation for the song. Key is D (two sharps).
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Old 05-16-2020, 09:35 AM
TJE TJE is offline
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Hmmm interesting chord progression! The charts I referenced show a C major not Cm. Key of D is two ## but doesn’t have a Cm in the key!
I’m curious as why this progression sounds so good!☺️
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Old 05-16-2020, 09:43 AM
Spawndn72 Spawndn72 is offline
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I have done some more reading and apparently flatting the vii chord is a very bluesy thing to do. So the C# dim becomes C major.
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Old 05-16-2020, 09:57 AM
MC5C MC5C is offline
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Actually a C#m7b5, if you believe the rulebook, but that is a half diminished anyway so adding the double flat 7 and making it diminished is achievable, as is a chord substitution to C. A diminished chord is already all flat, why not flat the root too? Anyway, there is a whole alternate theory of harmony that doesn't follow any of the rules, but one - if it sounds right, it is right. That's the harmonic theory that makes the C work. Plus the C fits in perfectly with the Am and G, so you could say the first bar was in D but the next three bars are in a different key, maybe G - Am C G is a II IV I in G. Point I have is that the chords simply sound good together, so they can be right, regardless of the key.
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Old 05-16-2020, 10:53 AM
TJE TJE is offline
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🤪 too much for me to comprehend! It does sound good though!
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Old 05-16-2020, 10:54 AM
MThomson MThomson is offline
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A C would also be the flat VII of D major which is often used in rock music from the 60s onwards. Paul Davids has a good video on this one (think it's called "why do all rock songs sound the same)

Last edited by MThomson; 05-16-2020 at 11:03 AM. Reason: Added information to make the video easier to find
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Old 05-16-2020, 11:04 AM
Spawndn72 Spawndn72 is offline
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Playing the chords I kept singing the words to “It don’t come easy”. Looking that song up the two are very similar with the later not having the G major chord in the verses.

I love this stuff even if I really don’t understand everything just yet.

Last edited by Spawndn72; 05-16-2020 at 11:14 AM.
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Old 05-16-2020, 05:26 PM
Spawndn72 Spawndn72 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MThomson View Post
A C would also be the flat VII of D major which is often used in rock music from the 60s onwards. Paul Davids has a good video on this one (think it's called "why do all rock songs sound the same)
That was an awesome video. Thanks.
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Old 05-17-2020, 07:28 AM
Kittoon Kittoon is offline
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To simplify: “Your chord progression can safely venture out of its scale as long as the “outside chord” contains at least one note from the scale in question”
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Old 05-17-2020, 10:26 AM
JonPR JonPR is offline
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I don't hear the Cm, it just sounds like C to me - and all the charts I've found online say C major. Where are the ones that say Cm?

As mentioned, the bVII chord has been a rock convention for at least 60 years. It's following a rule, not breaking one!

The Am, as the minor v chord, is a little more unusual. It comes from the same theoretical source as the C (the parallel key D minor, or D mixolydian), but rock more often uses the major V (A).
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Old 06-06-2020, 09:56 AM
EJWalker EJWalker is offline
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Just to be clear, music isn't written to follow the rules of music theory, music theory was invented to analyze music. To put it another way: if it sounds good, it is good.

Having said that, a C chord in the key of D Major is a flat VII chord.
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Old 06-08-2020, 06:43 AM
donlyn donlyn is offline
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Let It Rain


Here's another way of approaching it: Remember the intro?

Maybe it's just me, but I first learned this when the album dropped. I figured simply:

intro/break - A G A,
verse - D Am C G D.
cho - D Am D Am C G D

With some added notes here and there, just because.

Key of G.

Accounts for all the chords, especially I,IV,V. The Am is simply a relative minor of the 'IV' chord.

Use of the 'II' chord (A major in this case) has long been a variant seen in blues and related music forms. For example "Walk Right In", also in key of G.

Seems a lot less complicated viewed this way.

Don
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