Discovering the Soulful Sounds of the Iris Chords

Have you ever heard a song and thought, “what are those chords?” Well, if you’ve ever listened to any popular music in the past decade, chances are it was the iconic sound of the iris chords

This unique chord progression has been used by artists across genres, creating a captivating blend of soulful sounds that fans worldwide have loved. Let’s take a closer look at what makes these chords so special!

What Are Iris Chords?

The “iris chord” is a popular musical progression that uses three chords—A minor, D major, and E major—in ascending order. The Goo Goo Dolls famously used it in their 1998 hit single “Iris.” 

Since then, it has been used in countless other songs from various genres, including pop, rock, R&B, and even country.

Why Do Artists Love Iris Chords?

The simple answer is that they sound great! Combining these three chords creates a unique harmonic tension that resonates with listeners emotionally. That being said, there are some technical reasons why iris chords are so beloved by musicians. 

For example, the A minor chord helps create subtle dissonance that keeps listeners engaged while providing stability for the other two chords.

On top of that, the ascending nature of this progression makes it easy to transition between different sections or keys in a song without feeling jarring or disjointed.

When Should I Use Iris Chords?

It depends on what type of song you’re trying to write and what emotions your audience wants to evoke. If you want to create a more gloomy atmosphere, using iris chords can help emphasize those feelings. 

On the other hand, if you want something more upbeat, adding some variation, like playing D minor instead of D major, can give your song more energy and drive. 

Ultimately, it all comes down to personal preference—so experiment with different variations until you find something that works for you!


There’s no denying how powerful iris chords can be when used correctly in music composition. 

They add an emotional depth to your songs and provide stability and structure, allowing for easy transitions between sections or keys within a song. 
They’re incredibly versatile and can fit into almost any style or genre! So next time you’re writing music or looking for inspiration, don’t forget about one of music’s most beloved progressions—the powerful iris chord!

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