Not all songs have to be mega-complex. Some of the biggest names in the industry have managed to wow their audience with a song that only uses 3 chords. As we’re about to see, many of the greatest rock hits even use the SAME 3 chords! And good news for all you beginner guitarists out there, they don’t even use any finger-destroying bar chords! Result.
1.) Rock and Roll – Led Zeppelin (Chords – A, D, E)
First up we have a track that was formed from a spontaneous jamming session that took place whilst the band were struggling to record “Four Sticks” due to an incredibly hard drum part. As the title suggests, the song is based on the popular structure of early rock music – the 12-bar blues progression and took under 30 minutes to create. It is the second track from the band’s fourth album and became one of their greatest hits. Now that’s one jamming session I wish I was at!
2.) Wild Thing – The Troggs (Chords – A, D, E)
Instantly recognisable from its distorted first chord, this 1966 classic comprises of only two more! Originally written by American singer-songwriter Chip Taylor, the Troggs version took the track to number 1 of the Billboard Hot 100 and has been covered by many other big names such as Jimmy Hendrix, Fancy and The Creatures. They obviously couldn’t resist the magic of a three-chord hit either!
3.) What I Like About You – The Romantics (Chords – E, A, D)
They might be in a slightly different order, but these three chords still have the ability to produce another rock classic. Written around the guitar part, the track appeared on their debut album in 1980 and was also released as a single in 1979. Starting off as only a minor hit, it gained most of its popularity when it became an advertising jingle for Budweiser beer. Cheers to the power of three chords!
So it just goes to show, sometimes it’s the simple things that are the best!
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See you next week!