4 Guitar Chords - 1000 Songs! A Beginners Guide To Playing Your Favourite Hits | Mike Battle | Skillshare

4 Guitar Chords - 1000 Songs! A Beginners Guide To Playing Your Favourite Hits

Mike Battle, Film and Music Professional

4 Guitar Chords - 1000 Songs! A Beginners Guide To Playing Your Favourite Hits

Mike Battle, Film and Music Professional

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16 Lessons (42m)
    • 1. Introduction

    • 2. What Are Chords And Chords Progressions?

    • 3. What Are The 4 Chords?

    • 4. Why Are The 4 Chords So Famous And Why Do They Work?

    • 5. 1st Of 4 - How To Play a C Chord

    • 6. 2nd Of 4 - How to Play a G Chord

    • 7. 3rd Of 4 - How to Play an A Minor Chord

    • 8. 4th Of 4 - How To Play an F Chord

    • 9. You Can Play The Chords -Now What?

    • 10. Playing The Progression - Simple Strumming

    • 11. More Strumming Patterns to Practice

    • 12. The Full Power Of The 4 Chords - Other Progressions

    • 13. Spicing It Up - Chord Voicings

    • 14. Spicing It Up - Intermediate Playing Patterns To Try

    • 15. Spicing It Up - The 4 Chords In Other Keys

    • 16. Conclusion

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About This Class

Did you know that hundreds of your favourite songs are all written with the same 4 Chords? This course will teach you what they are and how to play them unlocking a whole world of guitar freedom!

Whether you are a new guitarist looking to expand your chord vocabulary, a budding songwriter looking for that perfect chord progression for their lyrics or a newly intermediate guitarist, this course will have something for you. 

During the class I will take you from the basics of what chords are, all the way to playing the 4 Chords in different patterns, voicings and keys! 

If playing all your favourite pop hits with ease sounds like something you'd like to learn. Enroll now and let's get going!

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Mike Battle

Film and Music Professional


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1. Introduction: want to pay any of these famous songs and hundreds more. This course will teach you how we're just four simple beginner guitar chords. My name is Mike, and I am a singer, songwriter and guitarist who has played globally to thousands of people at festivals and live music venues, some of which frequented by the likes of Ed Sheeran on even Jimi Hendrix. Back in the day, this course will teach you what the four chords are, why they work and how to play them with close ups. Another discussion, this course will be perfect for beginners, but also guitarist moving into the intermediate level because I've thrown in a fume or advanced classes for you to try out and change yourselves at home. If you'd like to learn hundreds of pop songs the easy way with just four chords in role now on, I'll teach you how 2. What Are Chords And Chords Progressions?: So what exactly is a chord accord? Is simply a selection of notes played simultaneously to make something greater than their individual parts? We'll be getting into more specific lessons later on how to play the four chords with close ups. But in this short example of what accord is, let's look, it's a C chord. Now the C note is just here on its own on the third fret of the fifth string. But once you add in two more fingers and some open strings on open stream is a string that you're not pressing down with your finger. Uh, suddenly you have a cord note cord on. You can hear how the into relate as you move from total novice. To begin a guitarist, you're going to need to learn chords along the way, as they are the bedrock of most songs. Next up, what's a chord progression? What a chord progression is simply, a collection of chords played one after the other, often with a pleasing sound. The four chords that were going to be learning in this course are a chord progression when they are played one after each other C g a month, See, see on its own. It's not a chord progression. See, G. I'm on a f is a core progression. It doesn't have to be with four chords, though it could just be see on F that would be known as a two chord progression. Now you know what accord on a chord progression are. Let's move on to finding out what the four chords are on, why they work. 3. What Are The 4 Chords?: So what exactly are the four chords? Well, there are two answers to this for the purposes off this begin. Of course, the four chords are simply see G a minor on F back to see. That's all you'll need to know as a total beginner for anyone out there who's not total beginner or looking to challenge themselves, I will be peppering throughout the course some or intermediate knowledge. So in lieu of that, the second, more advanced answer off, what are the four chords is that? Actually, they're not really C g a minor, and all the four chords is merely the 1st 5th Sick and forth numbered cords of any key in this course will be using the key of C major on in that key. It is true that c g a minor and F fit that structure, but equally you could do the same thing with the key of D on the key of E etcetera, there will be a lesson on how you can apply the four chord structure to other keys later on in the course 4. Why Are The 4 Chords So Famous And Why Do They Work?: the four chords have become incredibly famous because they have been used in literally hundreds of popular songs. As you saw in the introduction to this course, you can play anything from the Beatles to Lewis Capaldi with the four courts. Why do the four chord work so well together? Well, the first reason for that is they're all within the same key. For example, with our example c g a minor on F within the key of C. And secondly, I won't go into real detail on the technical cadence theory behind why it works so well. But for my beginners are simply explained that certain chords resolve and certain cords to create tension with the four chords. That progression works really well to always be resolved, which creates a pleasing sound for the ear of the listener. For example, here, now, attention results. Do you hear how that F to see cord is resolved? It feels like your home kind of your back to that, see is due to this tension and resolve into play that make the four chord such a great progression to use for pop songwriting. Hence them being used in hundreds of songs and why it has become so famous for working brilliantly together. 5. 1st Of 4 - How To Play a C Chord : it is now time to learn how to specifically play the four chords in the key of C. We're going to start up with a C chord. Let's go to a close up to see where to place your fingers. Okay, so now we're in a closer. Let's learn how to properly play a C chord. This is what it looks like. Your first finger goes on the second string first fret you, Then take your second finger and put it on the fourth string. Second fret, and then you put your third finger on the fifth string. Third fret. Yeah, you do not want to be playing the six string because the roots of the cord is the sea here on the fifth stream, this is what it should sound like. Now the difficulty for beginners with a C chord is this stretch along the neck on. One way to alleviate this is some people try to come to straight on with their see like this. What you want to be doing is aligning them like that. Make sure you get your wrist away around the neck because otherwise you're gonna be coming to straight on on. You're gonna meet the notes for anyone that doesn't know. Muting and know is when you don't press it hard enough, and it goes from a nice sounding note to this, which all my beginners are very well known and accustomed to. So the way to avoid this is to press down as hard as you can with each note on. Make sure when you've got the court progression there. Once you've got the cord in place, play through each one off the notes to make sure that you're not getting any muted notes and then we have it a C court. 6. 2nd Of 4 - How to Play a G Chord: Now you've learned a C chord is time to learn the G. Let's go to a close up to learn how the second cord for us in close up is the G chord. This stars with your second finger on the root note, which is the G, the base of the cord that's on the six string third fret way, then take out first finger on. We go to the fifth string second friends and then in a traditional G, and I'll explain what I mean by that in a minute. We then put our either third finger or little finger, whichever is more comfortable onto the first string. Third fret, making this a G chord, as without C chord practice, getting into the G position and then playing through one by one the notes to make sure that you're not muting any because in the G chord, there's a lot in the middle where you'll notice that you're not playing not the 2nd 3rd or Fourth ST. So it's easy to meet that, and you don't want to be doing that when I say the traditional G chord. I mean only having your little finger personally. You'll probably notice through this course that I actually play what's known as more of a rock G chord, where you add your third finger onto the third fret of the second string. Which makes, in my opinion, a full up on more pleasant sound. Listen to this one. This is my one more traditional J tradition. I'll leave it up to you to decide which one you want to play. One of the difficulties with the G chord as opposed to the sea is that where with C chord we were stretching up the neck. The G chord was stretching over the neck, so it's a different kind of muscle tensing, so it makes sort of this practice going from not having your hand on toe on and off on on. Make sure you press down as hard as you can avoid those muted notes. 7. 3rd Of 4 - How to Play an A Minor Chord: you've now learned the C chord on the G chord and had to stretch up and down the fretboard . But now it's time to learn an a minor chord, which you'll probably find easier. Let's go to a close up. The A minor chord is the easiest of all of the four chords will be learning in this course . It doesn't have any stretching involved, and this is what it looks like. Unlike the sea and the G chord. The root note off the A minor is actually on open fifth string. That's the A s. So therefore, the a minor chord consists off all of the strings down from the fifth string. It does not include a six string. You take your first finger and put it on the second string. First fret you. Then take your second finger and put it on the fourth string. Second fret and then your third finger and put it on the third string. Second. Fret you then, as I said, play down from the fifth string. Unlike the C in the G chord, the a minor is less likely to have muting because we're not stretching all the way over the neck over. Open strings were close together over here, and it should be nice and easy to get clear ring out from the minor. 8. 4th Of 4 - How To Play an F Chord: Finally, it's time to learn the dreaded F chord Here is the barcode version of it, but they'll also be a lesson in how to play this version, where you don't have to buy your finger across the hardest off the bunch. This for any beginners, is going to be really tough in this form when I'm holding my hands in this position is called a bar chord. The reason it's called a bar is my first finger stretches across the neck, barring the strings and playing multiple at once. For example, not only am I playing the six string, I'm also playing the first string without any muting. So for beginners, this is really difficult because it's hard to hold down your fingers strong enough on the fretboard to make a nice, clean ring. So correctly place your fingers for a traditional F. We place our first finger here, and we borrowed across from the six string. First fret. We then add our first finger onto the third string, second fret way, then at our third finger onto the fifth string, third fret, and then our little finger onto the fourth string. Third fret making out thing. This is gonna require a lot of practice. So make sure you're really pushing down with this finger to avoid any muting, because this is what it would sound otherwise, which doesn't sound good at all. Make sure to keep practicing with this bar. That's a as I mentioned, it can be incredibly difficult for beginners to play this form off bar chord. So I'm gonna teach you on easier version that you can try. It looks like this. In the first version, we were barring all the way across the first fret. But in this version, we will just be barring two strings. Also two of the thinner strings, the first and second rather than the thick ones down here which make it easier on your hands. The way to correctly finger this is too agile. First finger across the first and second strings. First fret. Then add your second finger to the second fret of the third string your third finger to the third fret of the fifth string and then your little finger to the third fret off the fourth Street. Make sure you're pushing down hard with your first finger, and then you have an f compare it to the original for anyone who gets advanced. You can add your thumb to play the root note, but that's something that you can learn a later date. So there we have it. That's an F way. Have out four chords a minor s back to see. 9. You Can Play The Chords -Now What?: congratulations. You've learned how to play the four chords. It's now time to put that knowledge to the test on play. The chord progression. Let's move on to how to play it, with some strumming on even finger picking tips. 10. Playing The Progression - Simple Strumming: Now that you've learned how to play each of their four chords on their own, you're well on the way to being able to play hundreds of different pop songs. But being able to play them one by one isn't enough. The next thing you have to do is play them together in the court progression, and there are two different options for this. The first is too strong, and the second is to use your fingers. First up, let's look a strumming. First of all, you could use a guitar pick. Now these come in different flexibilities. I like to use a hard guitar pick, but you can also get thinner ones, which people often used for more intricate guitar picking. Now I won't be going into close ups here because I'm presuming from previous lessons. You understand the fingering necessary for each chord. So the first thing to learn when you're learning the chord progression is to play one chord per bar. A bar is made up of beats and there are four beats in a traditional bar, so for our full chords it would be as such C chord then two g a minor 12341234 one's three ones 33 When you are strumming along, make sure that you are playing the correct notes for the court. As we discussed in the previous lessons. Make sure you're hitting the route off the court. So for C, it's the history. G is the sixth string. A minor is the fist re open and on F is the Sixth Street again. Once you've practiced one chord per bar, you've mastered those changeovers is time to get a little more complicated with your strumming? The strong pattern that you're going to want to learn is the traditional strumming pattern , which goes as this down, down, up, down, up, down, down, down for infinity. So if we apply that to al cords, we start with a C down, down, down G down, down, down, down, down and that's it. And you just need to practice that on. Repeat, I don't repeat. If you're still struggling with changeovers and getting the core positions up here, just practice with your hand down here. It will sound terrible, but just practice the river down, down, down. Perhaps you could use your fingers to mutate. Sounds a little bit better. Know much Once you practice that and you've mastered the right hand is timeto add them together and then play them as you should. Down, down, down, down, down. If you don't want to use a guitar pick, you can use your hand to strum the guitar just as well. There are two ways of doing this. A very simple begin. A way of doing this is to use your thumb now as per what we're just learning with one chord per bar strumming pattern. Take your thumb and then play to see a merely strong down using your fun. 34 G 1234 in the a minor 34 and then then back. Now this is a good little way to get started with using your hand. But actually, it's not a very effective method. What you're going to want to learn is how to use your finger like a pick. Now what you do to do this is you use your nails like guitar picks on the first finger. Does the down strokes on the thumb does the up strokes. What you do then do is you put them together like this and you use them like that, as you've probably seen with professional guitar players. So to apply that to our four chords, we're going to go down with the first finger on up with some in this example. First of all, I'm going to split my fingers so you can see where they're going. Down, down, down, down. Once you can play like that, your fingers split. It's time to do the more complicated version where you put them together and then it looks like this down. So many newbies, you wouldn't even notice that I'm not using a guitar pick, but I'm merely using my fingers, which is handy when you don't have a guitar pick available. Now that you've learned the C G, A minor and F cords and you're able to play them in a court progression, you've learned the key basis of the four chords that you need to play hundreds of different pop songs 11. More Strumming Patterns to Practice: as we've learned previously, you construct the four chords as a simple one. Corporate bar. 34 We can play the traditional strumming pattern down, but there are a whole host of strumming patterns that we can use. Let's look at a few more that you can learn. Firstly, let's look at how to play this strumming pattern. Now the format of this strumming pattern is down down, down, down change Down, down, down, down change Down, down, up, up, down, down Change Down, down, down, down Change to practice at home he is one more that you can practice as well is down down, up, down, up, down, up So let's apply Down, down, down, down, down, down, Down, Down, Down, Down, Down, Down, Down To play that for speed Now we have it to more for you to practice at home 12. The Full Power Of The 4 Chords - Other Progressions: Now that you've learned the C G a minor and F core progression, you've got the basis of the four chords. But to really expand the amount of songs you can play with the four chords, it's time to play other chord progressions. Learning Mork or progressions might sound daunting for any newbies, but actually were merely recycling knowledge that we've already learned from the course. For example, if you were to take an a minor chord on F court C Chord on, then a G, you've learned another chord progression. It's merely the order that you play the songs that we've already learned so far. This chord progression here G has been called by some commentators as of sensitive female songwriter chord progression. Now what's the reason for that is probably because it starts on a minor being a minor chord . It's kind of sad. Some people might say, Do not get technical so you can easily play that to simply use your fingers like that. We'll use the pick as we learned before I do that down, down, up, down, up, down, up, down, up, down, down, down, down, down, down and then notice that it's still resolves back to the sea, even though we started on a minor. The reason for that is we're in the key off. See, for anyone out there looking for more intermediate knowledge and trying to learn two more quick ones before we move on are the A minor G Yes and C Corps Progression, which is sometimes known as a quite heroic called progression, often seen in movie trailers. One of my favorite core progressions from the four chords, which I often using choruses, is F see I want. As always, we can resolve back to see. So there we have it with just learning four chords. We can now play literally hundreds of different songs from the pop charts through the years . For any beginners you want to just keep practicing the skills that we've learned so far. Practice your fingering. Go to the close ups to learn more from that practice your strumming patterns, practice your changeovers from cords. The next lesson is going to be moving a little more advanced on. We're going to teach how to do different voicings of chords and how you compare the four chords in a different way, as well as teaching some more complicated strumming on finger patterns. I'd really advise that any beginners keep practicing their original lessons, but then move on to this to learn more and challenge yourself. 13. Spicing It Up - Chord Voicings: this lesson is an intermediate lesson for anyone wanting to challenge themselves and improve their four chord knowledge. The reason I'm making it is because I couldn't make a course on the four chords without showing you just how much you could really do with them. For example, this is also the four chords. So how come that is also the four chords? The reason is that we let them down here in their first position. But there are also different chord voicings for every chord. Now, in this lesson, I'm not going to go through the whole caged system whereby you complain every court, up and down the neck. But I'm going to teach you some of the easier ones for beginner to intermediate players to pick up. First of all, let's learn how to do two new versions off C chord. We've been playing a Sikh or down here, but you can take this route No, on the fifth stream on players see here as well, using the same route to play this, you take your first finger and put it on the third fret fifth stream. You then use your third finger on bar across on the fifth fret from the second string. Third string. I'm full of string, and that gives you a C. Next up. Let's learn how to play here, which gives a brighter sound to play this brighter sounding sea. It's a bar chord in the same shape as the F that we learned down here. You merely pulling up to the eighth Fret s again. You take your first finger and you borrow it all the way across, making sure you can play the first during nice and cleanly. Then you take your second finger and you put it on the third string. Ninth fret. You take your third finger, put it on the fifth string 10 threat on your little finger and put it on the fourth string . 10th Fret not gives you see next up. Let's learn to new ways to play the G chord. The J Cord we've learned down here. Rock G form on in the traditional G four G could also be played here today. This take your F court. I merely push it up to your friends on. That's a G chord. You'll notice again. Like the sea. The root note is the same from the open chord. So the next one let's do in another way. If you push up to the 10th Fret Finn string, you'll find another G. Uh, what you then do is you take the same shape from the sea we had in the previous lesson, and you push it up to the 10th right. You're starting to see how the different shapes into relate now, so you take your first finger. You put it on the 10th fret of the fifth string. You then take your third finger on borrowed across the 2nd 3rd and fourth strings on. That gives you a G three different ways of playing a G. Now it's time for a minor. Let's learn one extra way you can play the a minor, take your first finger and go to the fifth Fret. You'll find another a note. Remember, the roots on the A minor was the open fifth string, and then the fifth fret of the six string is also tonight. You then by your finger across on the fifth fret. Take your third finger and put it on the seven threat fifth stream. You then take your little finger and put it on the seven threat fourth string, and that gives you on a minor so you can put that into your repertoire. Finally, is the f chord. Let's learn one more way you can play the F again. This shape that we've been using for the sea on the G could be repurposed for the F court. If you go to the eighth threat, you'll find an F note. Take your first finger and put it on the Fifth Street. You then take your third finger bar across 23 on four strings on the 10th fret and you have an F s, a practice that one as well for anyone looking to challenge themselves. So now you know there's extra voicings you could start to spice up your four chord playing as I mentioned. Those are obviously not all of the voicings that you can play on the neck of the four chords, but I think those shapes are some of the easier ones for beginner to intermediate players to pick up. So that's why from them in that 14. Spicing It Up - Intermediate Playing Patterns To Try: Here's another video to challenge yourself. We've learned how to strum the four courts without thumb on first Finger. We've learned how to strum them with a guitar pick, but I'm going to teach you now just a couple of other ways that you can practice playing them. First of all, let's look at what I call the thumb on DFLers method. Let's go to a close up. If you take a C chord, what do you want to do is play the root note on the fifth Threat and then flick with the rest of your hand down like this? Then it's walked to a G and do the same again. Root note and flick. Notice how my nails are dragging down on the strings that goes the a minor play The root note on the fifth string way F when we play the Rooth six tree, making sure to push down on our bar so we don't get any immune. Some on this could be a really cool technique. The thumb and flick method could be really good for folks. Style playing. Have fun with it at home. Secondly, less Logan Arpeggio arpeggio is when you take a cord and you play it through on This could be another cool way to spice up your four chord playing. Let's go to a close up to pay an arpeggio. Simply take the cords you would play. Pluck each note one by one on you don't go back to the room because you changed. So now I changed to the G chord and you go with the G. You miss out Fifth Street because you don't have time. For example, if we go from the sea, the G see, there's too many notes there. So you have to choose Which one do you want to miss? So for me, I play 6321 Then we changed the a minor. Let me go from the root again or we don't go back to the root cause of the timing. So you get and then we go to the F And because again, there's a lot of notes being played here. Like the G. We can't play every single one, so we'll do the same again. 63 So that would give us one more time. Uh, I wouldn't expect any beginners to be ableto are Peggy eight or to do the thumb and flick method, but I just thought I'd throw that in there as another thing. You can try to challenge yourself with a home. 15. Spicing It Up - The 4 Chords In Other Keys: as I mentioned at the beginning of the course. The four chords are not technically C g a minor and F. They are merely the four chords of the key of C major. So how do you play the four chords in different keys? What? I'm going to show you how now, as you can do this with so many keys, I'm not going to go through every single key on play. The chords live for you, but I'll show you on the Internet how you can use websites toe work out what the four chords are in each key. So, for example, if we use alky, the key of C major and we type in chords in the key of C on Google, if you go on to any of these websites but even it already comes up here already. This is the numbered format off chords within keys. So, for example, for us, we've got our first key. They're always in Roman numerals. We then have our fifth, which is the G R six, which is the a minor and then the fourth, which is the F. So to find out how to play the four chords in any other key simply just change this letter . De first chord. D fifth chord, a six called b minor. Fourth chord G in the key of I first chord. 1/5 chord e six chord F sharp minor. That's not an easy one for beginners and then fourth chord D major, and that is easier. There is toe work out how the four chords come across in different keys. 16. Conclusion: congratulations on finishing the course. You've now learned what the four chords are, why they work so well and how you can use them to play hundreds of different famous songs. The thing to do now is take what you've learned and practice it again and again so you can get into those court formations nice and easily on your core. Transitions are smooth. If you were interested in song writing, perhaps you'd like to take the four chords on. Add your lyrics on top of them to create your own songs if you wanted to. Some right. But you've never written lyrics before. Feel free to check out my three hour lyric writing course. Also available on the platform. I hope you enjoyed the course on Feel like You've learned something. I hope to see you again.