Climb the keyboard with a 251 progression


…when I am practicing my left hand chords (1-3-5-7) for Autumn Leaves, from bars 18 to 34, I am generally descending the keyboard. I believe I am using a root-2nd inversion-root chord combination. I noted my chord root notes in red.

Is there a chord inversion combination, that will make you climb the keyboard instead ?

Hi @angelo, thanks for writing!

The following applies to the 1357 system you’re using, as well as the other common left hand voicings.

If you move the chords in 25s (or in cycle of 5ths in general) with good voice leading (meaning voices stay put or move mostly in half/whole steps),
they tend to move downwards. They key is, once you move too low, you can jump up few inversions, depending on what kind of sound you’re looking for, and/or what the right hand is doing.

Have you checked out the following left hand voicings?

In general, you need just these voicings to survive almost any musical situation, as if one inversion goes too low, you have the other one to use! Also these voicings have little more color in them that supports the color of the 251 (major or minor).

Also, please check out Hayden’s awesome course on left hand voicings:

Thanks, let me know if you have any further questions,



Thank you Tuomo for all the trouble you took to prepare these fine instructions. I will get practice all these variations.

Thank you, let me know if you have any further questions, or if I can help with anything else!


Hi Tuomo - went back to this lesson and really enjoy Hayden’s exercises on Type A and Type B rootless voicings - Thanks so much!

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