Top Tips to Play Guitar Chords

One of the easiest ways to start playing the guitar is to concentrate only on playing guitar chords.

In fact, this is such a common method that most players, especially for popular styles such as rock, blues, and pop, only know how to play chords on the guitar. You can also quickly learn to play guitar if you apply yourself to learning chords.

Starting with Simple Chords

Although I think you should go beyond playing basic chords, there are still many advantages in learning to play the guitar through chords. To tell the truth, this is exactly the way I started: I initially just tried to figure out how to play simple chords, and this gave me the confidence to learn a lot more about the instrument. Eventually, I also learned to play lead and solos.

This may be different if you learned to play using a classical method. That’s because in classical guitar, the emphasis is in learning single notes first, until you build enough confidence to play chords with multiple notes.

Of course, each teaching method has its pros and cons, but for popular music it is very possible to learn and play many songs by just knowing the chords used.

Play Guitar Chord and Shapes

The good news for students is that the guitar is a great instrument to play chords. And you can learn them easily, without knowing any music theory.

Unlike with other instruments, you can learn chords just by the “shape” of fingers on the strings. Here is an example of shape that you can use to play a chord, (in this case a C minor chord):

In the guitar, this style of playing chords is even easier to achieve than with the piano, for example. This happens because the shapes in the guitar neck can easily be moved up and down, to form similar chords. As a result, the shapes or chords used in the guitar are very easy to learn and use.

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Most Common Guitar Chords

Playing Barre Chords

Learning Songs Through Chords

blankTo play guitar through chords, the first step is to learn a basic chords that occur in most songs. After some research, you’ll find that there are a dozen or so chords that can be used to play almost any popular song. Using these chords, you can start training your guitar technique with left hand changes and right hand rhythms.

Here is a quick list of chords that appear frequently in popular songs:

Am7 Guitar Chord

The E7 Guitar Chord

B7 Guitar Chord

G Chord on the Guitar

The F#m Guitar Chord 

G/F Guitar Chord

Barre Chord A

Once you are able to play chords with some precision, you can start exploring other part of the instruments. For example, you can start to play single notes for simple solos and scales. Doing this would be a good step into the direction of better understanding the instrument.

Finding the Right Chords

blankIf you need additional help with finding the right chords to use, there are several publications and websites that also list the most common chords. And most songbooks for popular artists list the chords for each song along with the music notation.

As you see, it is not hard to find the chords that you need! In reality, because popular songs are so reliant in common chords, you can use a small list of chords and play almost all songs in popular music styles.

Improving Your Speed

As a guitar exercise, you should be able to play quickly any of the most common chords. At the beginning, this may sound difficult, but you can get the necessary speed by practicing every day.

After you became used to this skill, try to explore more complicated moves and more complex songs. Using these tips will certainly make you a much better guitar player.