Interview with 12Tone

I sit down with 12Tone Videos to talk about their journey towards becoming a YouTube content creator and share advice for musicians and composers.

12Tone’s Channel:


Chord Theory Brain Teaser

This is a fun, (well, fun for a specific kind of person), exercise which will help familiarise you with chords and scales and how some of the more complex chords can be constructed. Essentially we’re adding a Common Tone to a sequence of chords and seeing how that note affects each chord.

How to Create Music Like your Favourite Bands

OK, but… er… why?

I developed this concept back in the day when I really wanted to sound like Guns ‘N’ Roses, but obviously couldn’t. So, why don’t I just leave this concept in the draw-full of awkward teenage crap? Actually, it’s super-useful if you ever need to parody a particular band, or if you’ve found work in a cover band – the former being something I’m super into.




Circle Of Fifths Part 1: Creation

In this lesson I examine how the Circle Of Fifths is created, and offer some ways to commit it to memory.

Below is a printable image of the Co5s, I strongly encourage you to print it out and put it somewhere you spend ages looking – above your bed, next to a bathroom mirror, etc.


In the next lesson, I’ll be examining some cool song-writing tips using the Co5s. You can find that lesson here.

Standard Chord Progressions 2 – The II V I

In Jazz we like to say that each chord plays a particular role within a scale. The job of the I chord is pretty clear  – it’s what we want to hear the most, no matter what comes before it we need this to feel satisfied at the end of a piece. The V, (or Dominant as it is often called), is expected before the I – it sets it up. The II, sets-up the V which in turn sets-up the I.

You could say that the II V I does for jazz what the I IV V does for blues, and there are some short jazz pieces that consist entirely of that, (in one form or another). The II V I is used more often, however, as part of a piece of music, perhaps at the end to gently wind-down to the root chord. In any case, most of the jazz lessons I present to you will either include or entirely rely on the II V I, and there’s many interesting ways it can be adapted, so you’d best get used to it.

We’re going to learn the pattern in C Major, using 7th chords. The chords are shown below, followed by the phrasing we’re going to use.