How To Learn Basic Guitar Chords | SongsChord

How To Learn Basic Guitar Chords 


Basic Guitar Chords 

Every guitarist understands chords. Whether you're a metalhead or pop fanatic you'll have to know basic guitar chords. But what should you know about chords? Is there a difference between acoustic guitar chords and electric guitar chords? 

In this lesson, we'll give you all the information you need to understand guitar chords for amateurs. From primary barre chords to complicated jazz figures, you'll learn the playing of chords. It takes time and training, but you need the right information before you can improve. So let's dive into the basics of guitar chords.

Table Of Content

What Is Chord? 

Chords are blends of 3 or more notes and can be form on any instrument that can play more than 2 notes. So apart from the guitar, you see chords on bass, piano, banjo, and other stringed instruments.

There are 12 notes to select from, and octaves usually don't count. So if you play a G major fret chord of the string and, in fact, you only play 3 notes, and the other 3 strings play different octaves. Although you can use any mixture of 3 or more notes, you usually select notes from a scale. Whether it's a pentatonic scale or one of the guitar modes, you can get a good chord sound if you don't just pick 3 random notes. 

What Are The Major Chords Of The Guitar? 

The major chords, together with the minor chords, are generally the first chords to learn for anyone who just starting out playing the guitar. These are main and most other chords are extended or alternative arrangements of major or minor chords. 

Also the basic major chords there are different types that also use major in the name. Among these are major seventh, major ninth and major thirteenth. 

Major chords sound "happy" and are usually the first we learn. You likely understood G, C, D, F, A, and E major very early in your chord mission. 

A major chord is any note plus the major third and the perfect fifth. A wonderful example is G major, where you have G, B, and D. The G chord is one of the most popular guitar chords, as it is the only major chord that uses all 6 strings in one position. 

C major is also an open chord, but it just utilizes 5 strings. Maximum guitar chords are barre chords, which needs you to lock maximum of the strings on the guitar. 

The basic major chords are often drawn with single letters. So the difference between C and C Major is, in this context, none. In some cases you may find these referred to as CM, DM, EM and so on. It is crucial if the "M" is uppercase or lowercase, in the latter case a minor chord is intended. 

What Are Minor Guitar Chords? 

Minor guitar chords are the "Sad" edition of a major chord. The only difference between a major guitar chord and a minor guitar chord is the third. 

Instead of a major third, they have a minor third, but major and minor chords have a perfect fifth. 

It's actually simple to change a chord from major to minor because they only have one note difference. Just identify which note is third and move it down one fret. On an E major chord, you would simply open the G string from the second fret to the first fret on the B string. 

Are there any other guitar chord variations that I should learn? 

Major and minor chords are the basis of guitar music, but there is an entire world of chord systems. We're going to cover a few of the more common ones, but there are some very complicated chords that you need to understand if you want to get good at creating new music. 

Seventh Chords 

Seventh chords are like major and minor chords, but they add an additional note, the seventh. Almost like with the third, the seventh can be major or minor and the mixture of the third and the seventh differentiates the type of chord you play. If you play a chord that has a minor third and a minor seventh, this is called a minor seventh chord, written "m7". 

Diminished chords 

Now and then you get a chord without a perfect fifth. Rather, it has a diminished fifth, which has a dissonant and crisp tone. When you have a minor third and a diminished fifth, you get a diminished chord. 

Add Chords

Because of how intervals work, you usually add every other note to a chord. That's why you get the third, fifth, and seventh first. 

Suspended chords

Sus chords are not actually a chord, they are 2 chords played fast. 

Power Chords

Every rocker will be more than familiar with power chords. These are the most popular kind of chord in rock and metal, but they don't actually count as a chord. Power chords contain of the root, fifth and octave, so they only count as 2 notes. But by removing the third, you get a really full and powerful sound.


Inversions are not a kind of chord, they are the way chord you play. 

C major starting at string A This is called the "root position" because the lowest note you play is C. Now imagine that you are strumming all 6 strings, in adding the open low E This is yet part of the chord, but now the lowest note you play is an E. 

Since E is the third, you are now playing First Inversion. They are all the same notes, but your lowest note is not the root of the chord. 

Think the same chord, but on the lowest E, picking a G. G is the fifth of a C major chord, so now you're in the second inversion. If the lowest note is the seventh, then you are in the third inversion, and if it is the ninth, you are in the fourth inversion.

If you want to know how to read Guitar Chord Chart, you can learn here: How To Read Guitar Chord Chart


Guitar chords are a massive part of playing music. From the basic theory to the most advanced techniques, you’ll use your whole guitar career discovering more about chords. But by taking the time to understand the fundamentals, you’ll put yourself on the way to proficiency. Even the most iconic player of all time began out just learning a few open chords. Take the time and step to learn this musical building block, and you’ll be on your way to becoming an ace player.

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