This progression, like any other, is always the same despite it can be part of the very original song.
Am chord progression can almost always seem to sound very fresh. That’s why many great rock and pop music hits were made with this chord progression in the last couple of decades.
When wisely positioned with some different harmonies, rhythms and also melody lines, this chord progression can really be reused again and again. That’s because it sounds addictive, but it is also quite easy to perform.
It sounds catchy, and it is also a good basic background set of tones for the solos on many instruments.
This one also sounds nice because this progression follows the 5ths circle extremely well. So, the F smoothly leads to chord C and this one that leads nicely to G. The main characteristic is that that this one sounds very happy, despite it’s the minor type of scale, and the reason for this is because other chords in this progression are major.
Well known Am progression hits examples in various music genres
1. Punk rock: Self Esteem – Offspring
This chord progression appears very often in well known punk rock songs of the bands like Green Day, Offspring, Sum 41 etc.
Maybe the energetic Offspring song about the Self Esteem is the best example of this formula. The song itself is both energetic and slightly melancholic and shows true power and depth of this seemingly simple chord progression.
2. Rock: The Passenger – Iggy Pop
Perhaps the best known Iggy Pop hit, this one shows the might and purpose of the beginning with the Am chord. So simple form, but yet this is the picture only on the surface.
The Passenger talks about the both complexity and the synthesis in its meaning, so it’s no wonder this one starts with an Am.
3. Modern pop: Apologize – One Republic
When it’s too late to apologize than it’s perhaps the best to make a sad song that begins with this chord progression. Because of the perfect circulation of chords in this one, the impact can be timeless.[/su_youtube]
So it’s no wonder that some best-known names in 21st-century music are still using it.
4. 90’s alternative rock: Zombie – Cranberries
One of those bands that have made their greatest and most popular songs with the help of this Am progression.[/su_youtube]
Zombie is perhaps their best-known song, and this completely proves how far and wide was this progression used among many 90’s alternatives, indie, rock and pop bands.
5. Metal (ballads): In This River – Black Label Society
Zakk Wylde is surely counted among some best metal guitarists, but here he composed a touching ballad on the piano.The song is dedicated to another great name in the metal music history, and that name is Dimebag Darrell, who was, sadly, killed in a gig in the year 2003.[/su_youtube]
This unfortunate metal guitarist has made perhaps one of the greatest impacts in this music genre, and it is no wonder why this song possess this Am progression.