Backdoor Chord Progressions

PUBLISHED: Sep 10, 2013 • UPDATED: Sep 10, 2013 • LESSON CODE: UL59b • VISITS: 20

ANY ukulele Subjects: theoryadvancedintermediateprogressionsrepertoire

Backdoor Chord Progressions

In jazz and jazz harmony, the chord progression from iv7 to bVII7 to I has been nicknamed the backdoor progression or the backdoor II-V. This name derives from an assumption that the normal progression to the tonic, the II-V-I turnaround ( II-V7 to I ) is, by inference, the front door. It can be considered a minor plagal cadence in traditional theory.

Backdoor also refers to the unexpected modulation created through the substitution of the highly similar IMA9 for IImi7 (in C: EGBD and CEGBD) at the end of the II-V turnaround to III ( II/III=IV, V/III=bVII, III ), thus arriving at home (the tonic) through unexpected means, the back door instead of the front door ( IIIm7, EGBD, being entirely contained within Imaj9, CEGBD, and the seventh still resolving downward ). If the II-V-I turnaround is an applied dominant, then the backdoor progression may be termed an applied subdominant The backdoor II-V is considered a'bluesy cadence and IV-bVII-I is used repeatedly as a chord substitution, along with tritone substitution, in Lazy Bird, John Coltrane's arrangement of Tadd Dameron's Lady Bird.

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The backdoor progression can be found in popular jazz standards in such places as measures 7 and 8 of the A section of Cherokee, measures 9 and 11 of *My Romance* or measures 10 and 28 of There Will Never Be Another You, as well as Beatles songs like In My Life and If I Fell.

The backdoor II-V is considered a 'bluesy cadence and IV-bVII-I is used repeatedly as a chord substitution, along with tritone substitution, in Lazy Bird, John Coltrane's arrangement of Tadd Dameron's *Lady Bird*.

The backdoor progression can be found in popular jazz standards in such places as measures 7 and 8 of the A section of Cherokee, measures 9 and 11 of My Romance or measures 10 and 28 of There Will Never Be Another You, as well as Beatles songs like In My Life and If I Fell.

Songs


Related Lessons

Related Lessons for Backdoor Chord Progressions at this time.

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Harmonic Analysis Lesson Series • Updated: Jan 6, 2020

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 ). This series of lessons are extracted from my book for use with individual private and on-line students. Each lesson directly corresponds the chapters in my book Harmonic Analysis for Scale Selection and Chord Substitution by Curt Sheller (me).

Remembering Songs • Updated: Mar 19, 2019

Listening to songs and wanting to play the same songs on ukulele - that's what draws most people to the ukulele. That and it looks like a load of fun and easy too play - which it is. Then you need to actually remember the songs that you're learning so you can play them again. And, hopefully not have to read them off a sheet all the time.

Remembering a song is lot like remembering the directions for a road trip. There are the turn-by-turn directions, road maps, signs and landmarks that will get you to where you are going. Turn here, turn there, remember this and remember that landmark. With a songs it's the chords, the melody, style, the harmonic cells, the form, etc that are part of the song that you want to remember.

Related Books

Related Books for Backdoor Chord Progressions at this time.

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Harmonic Analysis for Scale Selection and Chord Substitution
Updated: Feb 7, 2019

A Guide to Advanced Ukulele Chords - Volume I
Updated: Feb 13, 2020

Exploring Jazz Chords on Ukulele
Updated: Nov 24, 2009

A Guide to Ukulele Chords for Lefties
Updated: Jan 10, 2020

A Guide to Ukulele Strums
Updated: Apr 11, 2019

Modular Phonetic Rhythm, The Foundation and Workbook 1
Updated: Nov 9, 2015

The Advanced Guide to Chord Progressions for Ukulele - Volume I
Updated: Jan 10, 2020

Related Songs

Related Songs for Backdoor Chord Progressions at this time.

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There Will Never Be Another You
Updated: May 21, 2019

The song was published in 1942, and is one of the most widely known and performed standards of the jazz repertoire.

Related Lesson Series

Related Lessons Series for Backdoor Chord Progressions at this time.

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Harmonic Analysis for Scale and Chord Selection
Updated: Feb 24, 2020

Harmonic Analysis is the process used to determine the harmonic function of chords within a chord progression or song. A chord progression is defined as a sequence of chords, each chord has a root and is a particular chord type. The relationship of a chord's to a scale determines its function within that scale's tonality.

This series of lessons are extracted from my book for use with individual private and on-line students-members.

Related Lesson Files, Resources and Assets

Related Assets for Backdoor Chord Progressions at this time.

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A Guide to Advanced Chords Series - Chord Building Chart
Updated: Dec 31, 2016

A handle dandy reference chart for building fifteen (15) basic triads and 4-part chords.


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Key Signatures - Cycle of Fourths and Fifths
Updated: Oct 14, 2019

A handy reference chart of all 15 major and relative minor key signatues.


Members Only
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