The Andalusian Chord Progression

The Andalusian cadence is a term adopted from flamenco music for a chord progression comprising four chords descending stepwise.

Published: Sep 10, 2013 Updated: Oct 7, 2016

ANY ukulele | Subjects: progressionsrepertoiretheorysongwriting

The Andalusian cadence is a term adopted from flamenco music for a chord progression comprising four chords descending stepwise. It is otherwise known as the minor descending tetrachord. Traceable back to the Renaissance, its effective sonorities made it one of the most popular progressions in classical music.


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The upper tetrachord of minor scales varies: in C minor, the sixth may be Ab or A while the seventh may be Bb or B. To avoid confusion the chords of the progression may have accidentals added. The Andalusian cadence may then be notated I bVII bVI V rather than simply I VII VI V. The bVII note and chord is called the subtonic. In the final chord V the leading note replaces the subtonic.

Example in C major: C Bb Ab G.

Example Songs
  • Maui, Hawai'ian Sup'pa Man
  • Babe I'm Gonna Leave You - by Led Zeppelin
  • Basketball Jones - by Cheech & Chong
  • Believe - Elton John
  • China Girl - David Bowe
  • Feels Like the First Time - Foreigner
  • Fever
  • Good Vibrations - The Beach Boys
  • Guitar Tango - The Shadows
  • Happy Together - by The Turtles
  • Hey Joe - by Deep Purple
  • Hit the Road Jack
  • I Will Survive - by Gloria Gaynor
  • I'll Be Back - The Beatles
  • Layla - by Eric Clapton
  • Love Child - by The Supremes
  • Maneater - Hall And Oates
  • Pipeline - by The Ventures
  • Runnaway - Del Shannon
  • Science Fiction Double Feature - Richard O'Brien and Richard Hartley
  • Smooth Criminal - Michael Jackson
  • Stray Cat Strut - The Stray Cats
  • Walk Don't Run

One progression and lot of songs.


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Remembering Songs

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Harmonic Analysis Lesson Series

Harmonic Analysis ( HA ) is the process used to determine the harmonic function of chords within a chord progression. A chord progression is defined as a sequence of chords, each chord has a root and has a particular chord type. The relationship of a chord's root to a scale determines its function within that scale's tonality. Once a chord's function is identified, scale selections along with chord and scale substitutions can be made. This process is called Root Movement Analysis ( RMA ).

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Harmonic Analysis for Scale and Chord Selection

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Walk Don't Run

Walk Don't Run is a rock'n'roll instrumental composition written and first performed by Johnny Smith in 1955. It became a hit single in the autumn of 1960 for the Seattle-based instrumental rock band The Ventures. In the UK, the tune was covered by the John Barry Seven, whose version, while only peaking at #11 on the Record Retailer chart, compared with the Ventures' #8, outcharted them to reach the Top 10 on other UK charts such as that of the NME.

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