Writing chord progressions has never been easier than in Hookpad. Our “chord palettes” are persistent UIs that give you new ways to find and enter chords into your song. Writing chord progressions has never been easier!

A graphic showing the 5 chord palette icons in Hookpad

Magic Chord Suggestions

The magic chord palette provides chord suggestions that automatically update in real time based on the chords at your cursor location. This helps give you the perfect chord anytime you need it.

Each chord has a “score,” from 1 to 100, to give you a sense of how often it is used in this context in real music.

A GIF demonstrating the selection of magic chords in the new magic chord palette

Popular Chords

It turns out that out of the hundreds of thousands of chords, the vast majority of music is written with just a handful of chords. So we thought, why not have a palette with the most common chords available as a persistent UI?

This palette updates automatically based on your current scale at your cursor position. You can think of it as a personal roadmap to all of the most important chords in each scale.

A list of popular chords in the Mixolydian scale
Popular chords in songs using a Mixolydian scale.


Search lets you quickly find and add chords by typing their name (C, Dm, Ebm7, C/G). Then, Hookpad shows you how each chord relates to the current key.

You can also type relative names (I, IV64, iv7, 37, lyd47) as a handy shortcut to using the chord options UI.

For a more detailed description of how to input chords, see here.

A GIF demonstrating typing chords into the chord search field

Chord Progressions

If you’re looking for a quick way to start with chords, we’ve added a list of common progressions in each scale. Click on a progression to add it to your project.

This is a great way to both get started writing a song, as well as explore the functions of chords in scales that you may not be familiar with.

Progressions shows a list of popular chord progressions in each scale

Bass Sets

Hookpad’s Bass Sets palette lets you easily choose from the most popular chords built on a given bass note.

Being mindful of a chord’s bass is an important part of writing great progressions. Also, don’t forget that chords that share a bass are often good substitutes for each other!

Chord with the same bass are often good substitutes for each other.

These palettes are available in Hookpad today. Let us know what you think, and happy songwriting!

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