EXPLORING TRIADS IN HARMONIC PROGRESSIONS
As a first step, harmonic progressions can be build from triads. There are endless possibilities for useful harmonic progressions; the following examples are just a few of the many chord progressions that were important in music history.
'Romanesca' chord progression:
'Passamezzo' chord progression:
'La Folia' chord progression:
Commonly used 19th-century chord progression:
Fragment of a 'Bergamasca' chord progression:
'Circle of fiths' chord progression:
The many chord progressions are endless, ranging from the above examples and similar progressions to popular songs available in leadsheet format.
The basic chord progressions, f.e. the Romanesca chord progression, can be combined with arpeggio techniques:
A scale can be harmonized as well, and based on 18th- and 19th-century methods, this scale harmonization or 'rule of the octave' was used as a 'map' that could guide the performer. The following example is an 18th-century version of a harmonized scale in major and minor keys. This harmonic progression was not played entirely in the exact order, but rather in fragments. It is therefore an ideal exercise in finding different combinations while playing. The numbers below the chords indicate the 'basso continuo' notation. Once this progression is memorized it can be transposed to other keys. While playing, it is important to have the harmonic functions in mind: tonic, dominant, subdominant and secondary dominant.