Tag Archives: Metallica

Guitar heavyweight champion Em is chord of the week

You can’t get a lower chord on your six string than the E minor (Em). It’s a heavyweight that demands and deserves attention and it’s an inspiration for musicians in every genre, because it possesses an almost infinite number of possibilities. Below you’ll find five songs that honor the diversity of this triad.

The E minor is part of the Em scale, that consists of the pitches E, F#, G, A, B, C and D. Don’t be afraid, we’re not going to bore you with difficult theories. The pitches serve as a mental note, to show that the songs in Em often contain the chords that derive from the scale they’re in.

Livin’ on a Prayer – Jon Bon Jovi 

Livin’ on a Prayer by the New Jersey band Bon Jovi is a classic from the ’80s. It’s also their first song to hit the Billboard Mainstream Rock chart. The track was released in 1986 on the record Slippery When Wet and to this day it’s one of Bon Jovi’s most famous songs.

Looking at the chord progression we see that the whole song consists of four chords, namely the Em, C, D, and G. There’s an interesting thing happening at the end, where the band transposes the chorus to a G minor chord. That’s why you see the same intervals but played higher. You don’t have to do this in a jam. Stick to the normal progression and it’s likely that nobody will notice. But it never hurts to try.

I’d Rather Be with You – Bootsy Collins 

I’d Rather Be with You by funk legend Bootsy Collins transmits a completely different vibe than Livin’ on a Prayer. The 1976 track is one of the most sampled songs in hip-hop. For example, 2Pac, Eazy-E and even Beyoncé used the song in their tracks.

The funk classic produced by Bootsy Collins and George Clinton is built around an interesting bass line. The foundation of the track is made up of the chords E, Em, A, Am, C, D and G. The transition from minor to major may seem strange, but in funk it’s common to play around with the third, because it adds punch to the groove.

Nights in White Satin – Moody Blues

Well it seems that the chord of the week has turned into a list of classics, so why not throw in another epic song like Nights in White Satin by the British band The Moody Blues. The song appeared on the 1967 album Days of Future Passed and it’s about the silk sheets that front man Justin Hayward got from a friend. The song is radiating unrequited love and desire.

The track is written in Em and the chord is also dominantly present alternating with D, A, C, G and F. In the bridge where the famous fluit solo can be heard we hear a transition to B, Am and B7. In your own jam you could choose to leave this part out.

Losing Your Mind – Raury and Jaden Smith

The song gathered fame as a title on the soundtrack of the Netflix series The Get Down. At first sight Losing Your Mind, written by Raury and Jaden Smith, doesn’t fit in our list of Em classics, or does it? You are right, the version used in The Get Down is a new track, but its inspiration comes from the hit Vitamin C from 1972 which was written by the German krautrock band CAN. Now that’s a classic.

The original chord progression doesn’t differ that much from the remix by Jaden Smith and Raury. We encounter the same trick that Bootsy Collins used, where he switched between thirds. This is not surprising as this track has a funky vibe and the bass line plays a leading role. We could argue that the composition is more about rhythm than about melody. Try it out for yourself.

Nothing Else Matters – Metallica

One of the most famous ballads from the nineties is perhaps Nothing Else Matters by Metallica. The track made so much impact that the band decided to re-release the track in 1999 in collaboration with a classical music orchestra.

The song contains a lot of technical strumming, but can ultimately be reduced to a few basic chords. The verse consists mainly of Em, C, D, G and the chorus of C, D and A. Therefore, this track is a perfect addition to your setlist. If you’re an advanced guitar player, try out some strumming. Otherwise, just stick to the chords. Happy jamming!

From Justin Bieber to Metallica anything goes in E major – chord of the week

This week we’re placing the toughest major chord in the spotlight. The E has a powerful, full sound, so you can use it in every genre. From heavy metal to hip-hop, from hip-hop to pop, nothing’s too crazy for the E. 

As you may have seen on Instagram, this week’s chord is the E major. This is a versatile key that plays an important role in both classical and contemporary pop music. It’s actually not very surprising since your guitar is tuned by default in an open E. The diversity of the chord can be found in the list of tracks we have compiled for you.

Love Yourself – Justin Bieber

Pop idol Justin Bieber has always been a hit machine. The song Love Yourself is no exception. The characteristic guitar carries the track from beginning to end. Although this song sounds very simple, it has some nice challenges. It quickly changes chords and there are a few chords that you won’t find in every song. I am talking about the F-sharp minor and the C-sharp minor. Check it out for yourself.

Berlin – Thomas Azier

Speaking of pop idols, Dutchman Thomas Azier, who lives in Paris, is well on his way to conquer the world. The song Berlin of the album Rouge is an ode to his previous base where he wrote his debut album Hellas. In this track he describes the German capital through the eyes of a young artist. The song is written in E and in the chord scheme we see a number of challenging chords, such as the C-sharp, the C-sharp minor and the B.

Under the Bridge – Red Hot Chili Peppers

The men of the Red Hot Chili Peppers now look like an older version of Justin Bieber. It’s hard to imagine that they were ever young, tough and anything but poppy. The raw sound of Under the Bridge from the album Blood, Sugar, Sex, Magik from 1992 kind of reminds us of the good old days. The song has a Hendrix like vibe and chords like E major7, F-sharp minor and G-sharp minor show how diverse the key of E is. This track is a challenge for the advanced guitarist. Try playing along.

Welcome Home (Sanitarium) – Metallica

As already mentioned, the E chord fits into any musical style. It doesn’t sound too cheerful, but it doesn’t sound too sad either. It is melancholic, serious and powerful. Since this is the lowest sounding chord on the guitar, the E lends itself perfectly to dark genres such as metal. Try something new and play along with Metallica’s Welcome Home (Sanitarium). The song is a fun challenge for its divers rhythms and the usage of chords like the B, the B minor and the F-sharp.

Satisfaction – The Rolling Stones

Yes, we already know, you can’t get enough of the E. The Rolling Stones know that feeling all too well. They even wrote a song about it. Satisfaction is one of the most famous songs of the British rock band. If we look at the chord scheme, we quickly see that it consists of the three basic chords E, D and A. In addition, The Rolling Stones use the B7 jazz chord to add a little more color to the track. Try to play along. Happy jamming!