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The Jack Johnson Style

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In the singer/songwriter style, it is a common harmonic strategy to play single chords with moving bass lines underneath them. Jack Johnson does this in a tasteful manner that creates a strong pop feel to the progression while still creating a musically interesting set of chords.

This progression in E major showcases that by taking major and minor chords, and moving the bass lines from the root of the chords to the 7th. Nearing the end of the example, a strong turnaround creates enough of a difference to give the progression enough weight to repeat as both the main hook and verse of a song.

Another key component to this is example is the use of fingers to pluck the upper parts of the chords, while also playing on 2 and 4. This common technique has worked well for Jack Johnson along with many other singer/songwriters.

A similar technique can be heard in Jack Johnson's song, "Better Together."

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The Jack Johnson Style