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Beginner Guitar Chords
Learning to play the guitar can be one of the most rewarding experiences. It is an accomplishment that provides you with a talent that will last you the rest of your life, and it’s a skill that you, and you alone, have accomplished for yourself, the ability to make music. Your journey must start with the beginner guitar chords and exercises to lay the proper foundation of learning. Congratulations on taking a step in the right direction.
Here are the beginner chords you must know:
If you want a listing of all of the chords and how to make them check out this page from Guitar Tricks – List of guitar chords
They also have a great guide to learning how to switch between guitar chords quickly – Change chords quickly
Need some more visual help on how to make the chords?
There are many different techniques to learning to play guitar, and depending on who you talk to, you may be lead down many paths. The key is to find what works for you. After all, you are the one who has to learn. Sure, there are “proper” techniques and technical no no’s, but the bottom line is EVERYONE IS DIFFERENT. Some things may work for you that didn’t work for someone else.
When you’re talking about guitar chords, especially as a beginner, you may get confused or sidetracked by what they mean. The basic one’s you’ll probably hear about are:
- Major Chords
- Barre Chords
- Power Chords
We’re not gonna get too in depth yet. If you’re just beginning your journey then you will need to know these beginner guitar chords first. The primary chords beginners should focus on are the 7 major chords: A, B, C, D, E, F, G. With those you can play an endless amount of songs. Don’t get too far ahead of yourself and focus on things you’re not ready for. That will only slow you down. Later on you can learn the minors, diminished, 7th, 9th, etc. After you have a good foundation of the major chords it will be a lot easier to learn those, I promise.
A good training video helps tremendously, unfortunately a lot of videos you find online are everyday Joe’s giving their opinion on how to do something their way and not trained professionals that know how to develop a beginner, or an advanced guitar player for that matter. There is one AWESOME resource I suggest looking in to. I still use this to this day and I highly recommend at least taking advantage of their FREE trial. You have nothing to lose with that.
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Here’s an example from Guitar Tricks-
You can see it’s a very effective system with over 8000 lessons. Try it for FREE. You’ve got nothing to lose![/well]
Once you’re comfortable with making the basic chords we can start focusing on other chord “voicings” and throwing in a Barre chord, and 7th or 9th chords. You’ll really begin to see how small changes to your chord shapes can make a big difference in sound, which in turn can make your transitions sound much better.
It’s easy to get intimidated by all there is to learn, but don’t. Accept the fact right now that you will never stop learning and improving your playing. Learning guitar is a process and only ends when you don’t want to learn anymore. After all of the time I’ve been playing guitar I still practice my chords and scales just like when I was just beginning. I may pick up a guitar as I’m watching a football game and pick around, run up and down scales, or practice switching between new chords. And, after all this time I’m still not satisfied and only want to get better.
As I said earlier you will need to find which learning style suits you. I can tell you what worked for me. I chose chords that fit together in a progression, say G, C and D. I learned how to make one and then the second (without worrying about the third yet). I made G and then D and then I practiced moving between them. Just those and it was excruciatingly frustrating. G, D, G, D, G…..and so on. Eventually I was comfortable enough to add the third chord. G, D, C, G, D, C…..now reverse the order C, D, G, etc. And that’s all I did until I was comfortable with those three. It did take a while and hopefully you’re dedicated enough to get past this initial hump because once you train your fingers to go where you want them it only gets easier. So now you have three chords out of the way. Now pick another and add to the mix. G, D, C, A, G, D, C, A etc. You can grow your chord repertoire from there as you add one new chord at a time. Switch randomly between them, switch up the order, change up the rotation. Just keep your fingers guessing. It’s easy to say all this in one paragraph but the reality is it will take time. How much depends on you and your dedication.
Be sure to check out our blog for some pretty handy lessons and insights:
When learning your beginner guitar chords be sure to focus on these key elements:
- Focus- Stay free of distractions.
- Visualize- Picture where your fingers need to go. This will help on a subconscious level.
- Listen- Pay attention to what notes are fitting together to make each chord. Again, this goes into theory but will help drastically in the future when you’re learning new formations.
- Have Fun- If you’re not enjoying what you’re doing it’s gonna be a long road. When you first start learning these beginner guitar chords it gonna suck, it’ll be hard, but patience will pay off!
When you get a little more advanced you can start focusing on strumming patterns and even scales. You’ll see pretty quickly which chords fit together and which don’t. For example, G, C, and D go together and E, B, and A (there are exceptions but don’t worry about that for now, remember these are the raw basics). That may start stretching more into the music theory side of things but you will eventually need to know the basics of that as well and it all starts falling into place. Once you get down the basic beginner guitar chords you’ll see the gates open to new learning opportunities. You will find that learning different chords will become easier and easier as you train your fingers over time. With dedication it won’t be long before your focusing on strumming patterns to go along with your newly acquired beginner guitar chords.[/well]