Comedy rock band Axis Of Awesome has captivated audiences with their demonstration of how the same four chords are used in “every pop song.” The Australian group took to the stage to perform a sketch showcasing the striking similarities between numerous popular anthems from different eras, genres, and artists.
Opening the performance, Jordan humorously states that despite being a comedy rock band for nearly 40 years, they never had a hit. Benny then attributes this to the fact that they never wrote a four-chord song, claiming that all the greatest hits of the past four decades rely on the same four chords. He proceeds to play the familiar chords, instantly recognizable to many.
The audience is taken aback when Benny starts the demonstration, seamlessly transitioning from Journey’s “Don’t Stop Believin'” to James Blunt’s “You’re Beautiful,” Alphaville’s “Forever Young,” and Jason Mraz’s “I’m Yours.” The trio then proceeds to mash-up 34 more well-known pop hits, including tracks by MIKA, The Calling, and Maroon 5.
As the tempo increases, the band covers even more songs, astonishing the audience with the revelation that these diverse tracks share the exact same chords. Musicians refer to this musical trick as the I–V–vi–IV progression, which, when played in the key of C, includes the notes C, G, Am, and F.
The video of the performance quickly went viral on YouTube, accumulating over 81 million views and garnering thousands of enthusiastic comments. Viewers expressed their delight and awe, praising the trio’s talent and the seamless execution of the mash-up. Fellow musicians also commended Axis Of Awesome for their artistry, appreciating the harmonies and the impeccable live performance.
Some viewers drew connections between the four-chord trick demonstrated by Axis Of Awesome and the recent plagiarism lawsuit against British pop icon Ed Sheeran. They argued that copyrighting chord progressions and BPM (beats per minute) is absurd, referencing the ongoing lawsuit involving Sheeran and the Marvin Gaye track “Let’s Get It On.”
While the comedy rock band’s performance highlights the musical similarities between popular songs, it also showcases their comedic and musical prowess. Axis Of Awesome’s ability to seamlessly blend various tracks into a cohesive medley has captivated audiences worldwide, leaving them in awe of the musical patterns that underpin many pop hits.