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A Guide for Beginners - Major Chords - Page 2

by Christopher Sung
Pages: 1 · 2 · 3 · 4 · 5 · 6 · 7
The C Major Chord
Let's start with the C Major chord, which is also referred to as just a 'C chord'. For now, it probably isn't particularly important to know why it's called a C Major or what it means to be 'Major'. In practice, the main thing is to know how to play it and what it's called, so that when you jam with your friend and they say 'play a C chord', you know what to do. The fingering for a C chord is shown below:

So what does this mean? This is a typical chord chart. Each string can have one of three options:

  1. X - which means don't play that string
  2. O - which means play that string open
  3. Note Marker - This shows you where to put your finger on the string and the number inside the marker tells you which one to use.
Thus, the chart for the C chord above tells us the following:
  • 1st String - Play it open
  • 2nd String - Put your index finger on the 1st fret
  • 3rd String - Play it open
  • 4th String - Put your middle finger on the 2nd fret
  • 5th String - Put your ring finger on the 3rd fret
  • 6th String - Don't play it
So try it out. Put your fingers in place and strum it. It's OK if some notes don't ring. That's natural. In time, all the notes will ring loud and true. The important thing is that you just played a C chord!.

One of the reasons why the C chord is a good first chord is that it lays out on the fretboard in a very natural way for your hand. You'll find this not to be the case for some of the other CAGED chords that we'll learn in this lesson.

Try playing the music example below, set your loop count to "Forever" in your preferences at the bottom of the page, hit the play button, wait for the music to start, and try to play along with the example. It'll help you become more comfortable with the chord.

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