3 Chords aims to help refugee youth tell their stories through music by teaching them how to write melodies and lyrics to original songs, as well as play guitar in order to perform them.

The organization's main goals are to help refugee youth:

  1. Learn how to write lyrics and melodies
  2. Learn how to play the guitar
  3. Express themselves through original songs
  4. Hone English language and writing skills
  5. Gain experience recording songs in a recording studio
  6. Perform in front of local audiences
  7. Build community within their group of peers, and amongst the greater Nashville community
  8. Develop a lifelong love of songwriting and music making


The name 3 Chords comes from a phrase songwriters often say - that the only thing you need to write a song is "3 chords and the truth." Anne Buckle, the organization's founder, takes that phrase to heart, believing that it can empower high school refugees new to America to realize that if they can simply learn 3 chords on guitar, that's all they'll need to be able to start telling their truth through music.

We believe that the process of writing original songs has the power to help refugee youth express themselves, process the events of their lives, and channel the emotions they feel.

We believe that the process of playing guitar and performing original music for others has the ability 1) to help these young people share their stories with the Nashville community and broader world and 2) to help natives develop more compassion and understanding for refugees new to America.

We believe that music has the power to heal, and we hope to afford every young refugee the opportunity to express him/herself and be heard by the community.

Finally, we fundamentally believe that it is our duty as human beings to encourage and build up one another, serve our neighbors, and love people without reserve. Music is simply our chosen avenue for doing these things.