Ascending Augmented Progressions
"Inserting the "C+" (common tone substitution), the "C6" (embellishment), and the "C7" (chord quality change) in the "C" one-chord progression creates the "C-C+-C6-C7" ascending augmented propression a shown below.
An example of this type of pedal point is the opening verse progression to Whitney Houston's 1986 hit The Greatest Love Of All.
One-chord progression: |C / C / |C / C / |
Ascending Augmented: |C / C+ / |C6 / C7 / |
The box below shows other examples of this type of pedal point. Notice that the "C-C+-C6-C+" pedal point has a middle voice line that moves both up and down. The "C-C+-C6" and "C-C+" examples are further variations (omitted chords) of this type of pedal point." (Excerpt from Chord Progressions For Songwriters © 2003 by Richard J. Scott)
|C ||C+ ||C6 ||C7|| (You've Got To) Accentuate The Positive chorus (Standard - 1944), Because verse (Dave Clark Five - 1964), Laughing verse (Guess Who - 1969), Love Will Keep Us Together chorus (Captain & Tennille - 1975), and Stand Tall verse (Burton Cummings - 1976)|
|C|| C+ ||C6 ||C9 ||Maybe This Time verse (from "Cabaret" - 1966) and Losing My Mind verse (from "Follies" - 1971)|
|C ||C+|| C6|| C+ ||Louise A section (from "Innocents Of Paris" - 1929), Match Maker A section (Standard - 1964), and (Just Like) Starting Over verse (John Lennon - 1980)|
|C|| C+|| C6 ||C#o7 ||For Once In My Life verse (Stevie Wonder - 1968)|
|C ||C+|| -|| -|| Baby Hold On To Me verse (Eddie Money - 1978)|
Guitarists should be able to easily play typical ascending augmented progression chord changes in the most commonly used keys. Below are the chord fingerings I like for various ascending augmented progressions.
A = x07655 A+ = x07665 A6 = x07675 A7 = x07685
Dmaj7 = xx0675 Dm7 = xx0565 C#m7 = x46454 E = 022100
The Greatest Love Of All verse:
E = 022100 E+ = 03211x E6 + = 02x12x E7 = 02x13x
A = x0222x A+ = x0322x A6 = x0422x A+ = x0322x
Stand Tall verse:
G = 3x0003 G+ = 3x1003 G6 = 3x2003 G7 = 3x3003
Cmaj7 = x32000 Cm = x35543 G= 320003 C= 032010
Maybe This Time verse:
C = x32010 C+ = x3211x C6 = x3221x C9 = x32330
F = xx3211 F+ = xx3221 Dm = xx0231 F#o7 = xx1212
As with learning any new progression, you should study it by playing it in all twelve keys. Also, try substituting the ascending augmented progression where a “I” chord is used for two or more bars.
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