This article will show you how to best use the free guitar chord charts that you can find online. As the internet changes, sites dwindle and new ones emerge, so I won’t risk this resource becoming obsolete by discussing where to find your free guitar chord charts, but how to use them to get started playing guitar.
You can easily put together a good collection of chord charts and lyrics to your favorite songs to help you learn to play the guitar. If you feel like you should learn a lot of music theory and how to read music notation, but you somehow feel like it’s not you, then that’s okay, start with what excites you the most. Once you’ve started learning how to use the guitar chord charts that you bought or downloaded for free, you can see as you go that you’ll need to know a little music theory to see how chords and scales fit together. However, if you are comfortable learning the chords to your favorite songs, keep doing it.
So let’s get started with the basic little steps and develop some really useful knowledge about guitar chords and how the dots in the tables relate to musical sounds. You know the frets on the neck of your guitar somehow show you where the notes are, so let’s get into the technique a bit more. You will see when you use scale charts to learn how to play guitar pieces that at a certain position on the fretboard you will sometimes need to raise or lower a fret or two. If you play the note on the first fret and then go up to the second fret, you’ve gone up a semitone. If you have raised two frets, it is called a tone. The distance between the notes E and F or B and C is one pitch. The distance between the notes C and D is one tone. So as you learn songs in different pitches you’ll start to see that what you’re playing when you play the scales are different pitch or semitone patterns on the guitar neck.
If you’ve seen guitarists play, you may have noticed that they sometimes put their index finger on all six strings. This is called a bar. When you start learning songs, you will use the chords played in the FIRST position on the keyboard. These are mostly open agreements, that is, agreements that do not use the bar. You can try playing the chords on the barre at any time, but it’s a bit ambitious to hope you can use them until your hands have practiced a few open chords.
When learning chords to accompany songs, you will likely make use of your chord charts by showing you the chords that all the guitar strings use. But if you want to start soloing, start with three-note chords called triads. The three notes in a triad are the base notes of your chord, so as you learn triads you will begin to see how guitar chords are structured. You can also move your triads up and down on the keyboard to create new chords.