Q – I’m very far from being a musician, but sometimes I pick up a guitar and sing and play a few songs. Sometimes I play some of yours. Over the years, I’ve found the chords to several of your songs online, either on your site (thanks!) or elsewhere. I have all the songs from Rattlesnakes and one or two songs from most of the others.

Playing these songs, I’ve noticed that at least half of the Rattlesnakes songs contain maj7 chords (Perfect Skin, Forest Fire, 2cv, Patience, Heartbroken), while I hardly have discovered any such chords at all in the rest of your songs. Am I right? In that case, why is that? Did you simply get tired of maj7 chords? (I love them!)

A – I never thought about it but you’re right. The one on Forest Fire is something of an accident – the keyboard brass sound played the root and the 5th at the same time so playing a major implied a maj7, too.
It’s mainly C Maj7 and F Maj7 and I haven’t tired of those chords. In fact in the key of C I often find F Maj7 preferable to F major which isn’t the loveliest chord at the 1st fret.
The chords I have tired of somewhat are the ones in Patience. Those are very much Glasgow 1982-3 chords, post Girl From Ipanema. That said I do like a Major 7th on the 7 chord in a key to resolve. Like Bb Maj7 in C.