I was recently listening to Slide Away by Oasis and could not help but notice how the song hits the I chord a whole minute in the song (the "now that you're mine"). I really loved this move and was wondering how does it work? And maybe about other songs that use it? I would be interested in any compiled information on this

Basically, the verses go (Am7 G Fmaj7), the pre-chorus is (G F) and the chorus starts on the C (I) about a minute into the song.

It turned out there's a great bunch of such songs and just as MrTheBard says, they just switch to the relative major, they are resolving before that as well but on the vi(7) chord.. Just googling for 'relative major chorus' gives out a whole bunch of results. My new old favourite with this feature is Comfortably Numb.

  • The delay or obfuscation of the tonic was often a goal of Romantic-era classical composers. For example, in Chopin's Prelude in E minor, we never hear a root-position E minor chord -- in fact, the key of the composition is entirely obscure -- until the very final chord of the piece.
    – Aaron
    Commented Oct 11, 2020 at 6:32

1 Answer 1


It works for several reasons. I don't have a list of songs that follow a similar format, but it should not be too hard to find some. If I think of any, I will update this post.

One of the main reasons why this works, is because Aminor is relative to Cmajor. The relative minor of a major scale is called the Aeolian mode. Which means that the natural Aminor scale has all of the same notes as Cmajor. Another thing that makes this even less complex than just alternating between major and relative minor, is the fact that Am7 actually contains a Cmajor chord within it. The notes that make up Am7 are [A C E G] whereas C major is [C E G].

So while Am7 is not a C chord, it can technically and functionally be considered an inverted Cmaj6 chord. If you want to know more about this sort of thing, look into relative minors. If you're in a major key, the relative minor will start on the 6th scale degree.

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