guitar chords

This section of the site is a type of chord dictionary. Here you can find all the chords you need to know for the lessons and songs on the site. The chords are arranged in a series of progressive levels 1 to 5. Level 1 being for beginners, through to level 5, for the more advanced player or jazz guitarist.

All the chords are shown in chord diagrams, if you don't understand these checkout reading chord diagrams in the essential basics section. All are in handy, printable PDF's for study away from your computer.

If you are more advanced, there are many more chords in the RGT Exam Resources Page. These include many altered chords, used mainly in jazz.

level 1 guitar chords

level 2 guitar chords

level 3 guitar chords

level 4 guitar chords

  • Major 6 and Add 9 Chords
    These are open chords, but can add interest to your rhythm playing, along with the suspended chords.
  • E-shape barre chords
    These chords are difficult to start with, but will enable you to play in any key.
  • A-shape barre chords
    You need to have mastered the previous lesson first, but these chords enable you to play all major and minor chords in 2 places.
  • dominant 7 barre chords
    Not only are these chords very common, they will enable you to play the blues in any key.
  • minor 7 barre chords
    These chords add a soulful sound to your playing.
  • major 7 barre chords
    These chords will add a jazz flavour to your playing.
  • sus 4 barre chords
    These chords can enhance rhythm playing, try switching between major and sus 4 chords. Listen to 'Pinball Wizard' intro for an example of this.

level 5 guitar chords

  • major 6 chords
    Cool chords for jazz and swing.
  • minor 6 chords
    Cool minor chords for jazz and swing.
  • minor 7♭5 chords
    These are essential chords for jazz, but are used in some blues. 'Still Got The Blues' and 'Parisienne Walkways' spring to mind.
  • augmented 5th chords
    Great chords to use in blues or jazz. To get the sound, listen to the second bar of 'Raining In My Heart' by Buddy Holly.
  • diminished 7th chords
    Cool jazz chords, often used in more advanced blues.
  • dominant 9 chords
    Great chords, very common in jazz and blues playing. Try playing them instead of dominant 7 chords, to add a jazz flavour.
  • major 9 chords
    Mainly used in jazz, but can add a smooth sound. Try the occasional one instead of a major 7 chord.
  • minor 9 chords
    Very soulful sounding jazz chords. Try playing them instead of minor 7 chords.
  • minor 11 chords
    These chords are really for jazz.
  • Dominant 11 Chords
    These chords are really for jazz.
  • Altered Dominant Chords
    These chords are used to add extra tension, when the dominant chord is resolving to the I chord. This is called a 'functioning dominant'. Check out the colour coding for the relevant altered notes.