Top tips to make your chords sound great!
- Strum the chord, pick each string individually and adjust, and then strum again.
- Press down strings with the tips of your fingers only
- Use a pick! Picks give a clearer sound. I use .73 Jim Dunlops
- Don't play any strings with an X
- Don't touch the underside of your guitar with the palm of your hand (or you'll mute the thinnest E string)
Chord boxes show us where to put our fingers for each chord. Here is the chord box for the E Chord (E major).
Basic Open Chords
'Open chords' get their name from the open strings that ring out in each of these chords. They are the eaiest chords to play, and you can play a ton of songs with them- so don't forget to learn PLENTY of songs with these chords before you get further down this page!
Easy F chord (F major 7, aka F maj7)
Minor chords sound sad. They therefore are not used as often, but one of them is likely to crop up in a song with 4 chords or more so they need to be learned.
Oasis style chords
7th chords (aka Dominant 7th chords)
Any number at the end on a chord means there is an extra note added. This doesn't always make it harder to play, in fact it can make it much easier! 7th chords always sound 'bluesy', just like how minor chords sound 'sad'. These dominant 7th chords are great for getting an authentic blues sound, and can also preempt a change in a chord sequence, like in Hey Jude.
F chord & variations
F barre chord
Here is the full F barre chord as a chord diagram. The line between the two '1's means this fret is barred with your first finger.
F chord hybrid (mini barre)
Here is an easier option, which is basically a full F chord but with the first finger pressing down just the first two strings, instead of all 6.