Beginner Primer Guitar course
Introduction to chords

Basic open chords

In this lesson we are going to learn some basic chords and switch between them with tempo targets.

Contents of the lesson Basic open chords Switching between chords Methods and exercises References
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Basic open chords

These are some very basic open chord shapes that we learn on the guitar. A lot of these chords are commonly used to play a lot of popular songs.
These are the absolute essential set of chords that you need to know and with the right combination you can play hundreds of songs right away. So spend a lot of your time mastering these chords before you move on to more advanced chords.

Switching between chords

When learning how to change chords, remember that slow is smooth,smooth is fast.Avoid jerky movements. Observe your movements for any inefficiencies and correct them as soon as they are discovered. Lastly, stay as relaxed as possible.


The first method will be the timer method.
Begin by setting your timer to 30 second to a minute.
Pick two or three chords that you want to practice changing between
Start the timer and gebin changing your chords
Count how many chord changes you have done.
Repeat this process multiple times, the higher the number of changes the more improvement you are making.
The second method is using a metronome.
This exercise requires a metronome. If you haven't already downloaded a metronome app yet, google has its very own metronome tool. This exercise is more effective than the first but it requires you to stay on time with the metronome. With a metronome you will be forced to stay on time, which can be sped up to force yourself to change between the chords quicker. The BPM of the metronome will give you a clear indication of whether or not you are making any improvement. For example, if you started at 60 bpm and ended at 100, you know that you have made good progress.

Here's a few steps to help with the metronome practice.
Set the metronome at a slow speed, say 60 bpm.
Let's switch between A and D major chords. Play and sustain A major chord for four beats and then switch and play a D major chord. If you find that switching to the D major right after the fourth beat is getting too difficult, then try to begin your switch on the fourth beat itself. Heres how

Once it feels comfortable and smooth to do the changes then increase the speed of the metronome by 5 or 10 bpms.
If sustaining a chord for beats feels too easy, then try sustaining each chord for only two beats.
You can even play one chord per beat
At all times while practicing these exercises, make sure that all the notes of the chord sound clean and that there are no bum notes.


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