How to build chord progressions (50 free MIDI files included)

Chord progressions can be a black box for many producers, since the music theory behind creating them can feel illusive and intimidating.

In our comprehensive tutorial above, we go over the basics of constructing chord progressions and demystify the process for newer producers. We explore the following topics:

  • Diads
  • Triads
  • Inversions
  • Extensions
  • Rhythmic variations

Rather than covering these concepts in a solely abstract setting, we apply them directly to genres spanning pop, trap, reggaeton, hip hop, deep house, R&B, lo-fi, progressive house, and future bass.

Try out the chord progressions from the tutorial and more with this free collection of MIDI files. We’ve also compiled the accompanying drum loops from the video here.

How do you approach constructing your own progressions? Do you have any questions on how to build them? Let us know in the comments below.

February 1, 2020

Nick Chen Content Marketing @ Splice. Nick Chen is a producer, performer, and educator under the aliases "nickthechen" and "Enix."