Easy Chord Changes For Beginners

One of the most challenging tasks for a new guitarist can be making chord changes smoothly and quickly, without creating a pause in the music. Often times, coming up with a specific strategy for getting from one chord to the next can make all the difference.

Lisa McCormick over at GuitarTricks.com did a great beginner lesson where she teaches you some tricks to make your chord changes smoother and easier. This first lesson looks at chords which share one note in common. By holding this note in place while you make the switch from the first chord to the second chord, you keep your hand oriented and in position, and the chord change goes much more smoothly.

Practice the following chord changes, and keep the common note held down while you make the switch.

C and Em (middle finger stays down)

G and Em (index finger stays down)

C and Am (index and middle fingers stay down)

E and B7 (middle finger stays down)

C and F (Index finger holds position on 1st fret of 2nd string)

Practice these pairs of chords with a simple strum pattern, to work on your ablity to make the change without creating a pause in your rhythm.

When you are ready for more, try this four-chord progression, taking advantage of chords which share a common note to make your changes as smooth as possible: