Skip to content

I Shall Be Released by Bob Dylan

    Featured Video Play Icon

    The Chord Progression

    The chord progression for “I Shall Be Released” is quite different than most songs. It doesn’t use the IV or V chord at all. The progression of I, ii, iii, ii, I is repeated throughout the song. The song in the key of A, so the chord progression sounds as A, Bm, C#m, Bm, A.

    To play it just like the original recording you’ll play in the key of G with a capo on the 2nd fret. The use of the capo transposes it so that it sounds in the key of A.

    Verse 1

    G                            Am
    They say everything can be replaced
    Bm        Am               G   
    Yet every distance is not near
    G                   Am
    So I remember every face
    Bm       Am             G   
    Of every man who put me here.


    G                   Am
    I see my light come shining
    Bm       Am            G
    From the west unto the east.
    Any day now,
    Any day now,
    Bm Am         G
    I   shall be released

    Verse 2

    A                           Bm
    They say every man needs protection.
    C#m            Bm       A   E7
    They say every man must fall.
    A                      Bm
    Yet I swear I see my reflection,
    C#m          Bm             A   E7
    Somewhere so high above the wall.

    Verse 3

    A                                Bm
    Well yonder stands a man in this lonely crowd,
    C#m       Bm               A   E7
    A man who swears he not to blame.
    A                           Bm
    All day long I hear him cry shouting loud,
    C#m         Bm             A   E7
    Calling out that he's been framed.