Seven Nation Army chords



You can learn how to play Seven Nation Army by The White Stripes! 

The ubiquitous Seven Nation Army by the White Stripes is a single off the band’s fourth album, Elephant.

Easily Jack White’s most popular song, it is centered around a bass line riff which is actually played by a guitar, using an octave pedal.

Released in 2003, Seven Nation Army has become ingrained in popular culture as it’s sung at sports and political events, replacing the bass line with various words or just chanting oh’s.

The incredible success must have come as somewhat of a surprise to Mr. White as when he initially played it to his A & R man was told that “I don’t hear a single”. Jack decided to save it in case he’d ever get to write a James Bond theme.

After contemplating that this was so unlikely to happen (it did, 5 years later) he recorded it for the album Elephant, released the following year.

The music video, which was rewarded with Best Editing In A Video at the 2003 MTV Video Music Awards, definitely also helped with the success.

If you’re playing in an indie rock band and looking for a guaranteed crowd pleaser, look no further than Seven Nation Army, with the added bonus that you can teach anyone the chords in 3 seconds.

Let’s take a look at all the lyrics with that riff, which I’ve written as a bass line in brackets and as 5 chords.


Seven Nation Army chords and lyrics


||: Em (E G E D) | C5 B5 :|| x4

||: Em (E G E D) | C5 B5 :||
I’m gonna fight ’em all. A seven nation army couldn’t hold me back.
They’re gonna rip it off. Taking their time right behind my back.
And I’m talking to myself at night because I can’t forget.
Back and forth through my mind behind a cigarette.
| G5 | A5 |
And the message coming from my eyes says “Leave it alone”.

||: E5 G5 E5 D5 | C5 B5 | E5 G5 E5 D5 | C5 D5 C5 B5 :||
| G5 | A5 |
||: Em (E G E D) | C5 B5 :|| x4

||: Em (E G E D) | C5 B5 :||
Don’t wanna hear about it, every single one’s got a story to tell.
Everyone knows about it, from the Queen of England to the Hounds of Hell.
And if I catch it coming back my way, I’m gonna serve it to you.
And that ain’t what you want to hear but that’s what I’ll do.
| G5 | A5 |
And the feeling coming from my bones says “Find a home”.

||: E5 G5 E5 D5 | C5 B5 | E5 G5 E5 D5 | C5 D5 C5 B5 :|| x4
| G5 | A5 |
||: Em (E G E D) | C5 B5 :|| x4

||: Em (E G E D) | C5 B5 :||
I’m going to Wichita. Far from this opera forevermore.
I’m gonna work the straw. Make the sweat drip out of every pore.
And I’m bleeding, and I’m bleeding, and I’m bleeding right before the Lord.
All the words are gonna bleed from me and I will sing no more.
| G5 | A5 |
And the stains coming from my bloods tell me, “Go back home”

||: E5 G5 E5 D5 | C5 B5 | E5 G5 E5 D5 | C5 D5 C5 B5 :|| Em |


Seven Nation Army chord progression

Not really a chord progression, more of a bass line over an Em, I’d recommend you add some 5 chords as this will fatten it up, especially if you don’t have an octave pedal, but do have a bass player!

Apart from the riff which is in Aeolian, there are two more chords, a G5 chord, and an A5 chord.

If Em is chord VI, then G is I, and A is II. Making them 5 chords does disguise the fact that A should have been minor.

For a song being as incredibly famous as Seven Nation Army, you’d think there’d be more chords than this, but there ain’t!


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