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How to play guitar chords

Many of the songs on this site is made out of guitar chords. These are easy to use even when playing the guitar but you have to know what they mean and how to read them. Here is a good guide on how to read guitar chords. You will also find a complete guitar chord diagram below.

How to play guitar chords

The guitar chord diagram is sorted by the name of the chord, as you can see it in the guitar chords on It can look like this:

Fmaj7 or F#7 [0 0 3 2 1 0] (C E F A) : major triad, major 7th

OK, each line starts with the name of the chord, in this case, if you see Fmaj7, or the more common used F#7 in a chord, play your strings with the finger on the [0 0 3 2 1 0] frets.

[0 0 3 2 1 0] means that you should play the thickest E string open, that's what the first zero means. Each number is one string, so the second string, or the A string, should be played open as well. The third string should be played while one of your fingers on your left hand is pressing it down on the third fret. Follow these steps for the rest of the strings and you will soon know how to play this guitar chord. Note that if there is an X instead of a number, but means that the string should not be played at all.

The last part of the line is a note guide for the chord. Please also note that there are different ways to play the same guitar chords. The tone will be the same but which strings you play and where the fingers on your left hand is placed may wary. So, which version should you play? Well, that depends on the previous chord, and the next. Sometimes the transition between two chords has to go very fast and it is then best to choose finger placements which is on the same place on your guitar neck.

Sometimes the chord does not sound very clean. Don't blame the guitar chord; the reason is probably how you played the strings. Your finger is maybe not placed correct on the fret, it might be on the wrong fret or the finger is touching another string. Try to apply more pressure and try to put your finger as close to 90 degrees to the fret board as possible.

There is only one way to be a good guitar player; practice, practice and more practice.

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