Guitar Chord Library

Browse and discover guitar chords with our chord library.

Select the tone and voicing of your chord

See how to fret the chord

Click play to hear the sound of the chord

How to use the chord finder

The chord finder is a tool that you can use to:

  • Look up how to play a chord by its name
  • See different voicings of the same chord
  • Learn which fingers to use for any given chord voicing
  • Find out which notes are in a chord
  • Figure out which intervals are present in a chord

How to find a specific guitar chord

The root note of the chord is displayed in the top left corner. 

  • The default is C. 
  • Simply click on the button and choose from the dropdown menu to change the root note of the chord.

The quality of the chord is displayed in the top right corner. 

  • The default is major. 
  • Again, click on the button to choose your desired chord quality.

Each circle represents a note in the chord. 

  • If the circle is on top of a string, you’ll need to fret the note with your finger.
  • If the circle is displayed above a string, you play the open string.
  • If there is an X displayed above a string, you either don’t play it or mute the string

At the bottom of this list, you’ll find the slash chords. These are chords with a specific chord tone in the bass

  • C Maj/M3 means the chord finder will display voicings of a C major chord where the lowest note is a major third (M3). 
  • Counting from the root note C, the major third in this case would be the note E.

What are the notes in a chord called?

As soon as you choose a root note and chord quality, the chord finder will display a chord voicing.

  • Each circle displays the name of the note, so all you have to do is eliminate any duplicates and you have your answer. 
  • For C major, the notes are C, E, and G.

Which fingers should I use to play a chord?

Using the button on the bottom-left corner, you can change what information is displayed in the circles on the fretboard.

  • ABC = note names
  • IV = intervals/chord tones in relation to the root note
  • 123 = which finger frets the note (1 = index)

Expand your knowledge of guitar chord types

Not familiar with all of the symbols in the chord type list? No problem. 

If you want to find out which intervals make up a particular chord, choose the chord type you’re curious about and the “IV” setting on the bottom left corner.

For example, C diminished 7 is made up of: 

  • R: root note
  • TT: tritone or #4/b5
  • M6: major 6th or bb7
  • m3: minor 3rd

What are guitar chords?

As soon as you play more than one note, you’re playing a chord.

  • Dyads = two-note chords. 
  • Triads = three-note chords.
  • Seventh chords = four-note chords made up of a triad + the 7th note in the major scale

Triads are the most common chord in virtually every style of music. They’re one of the most powerful tools at a guitarist’s disposal when it comes to lead and rhythm playing.

We typically build chords by combining notes from a scale.

What is a scale?

The major scale is a seven-note scale based on whole and half-step intervals. 

  • Intervals describe the distance between two given notes.
  • Ex: second (2), third (m3 or M3), fourth (P4), fifth (P5) etc.
  • The smallest distance between two notes in Western style music is a half step (or semitone). 
  • A half step on the guitar is one fret
  • Two frets are referred to as a whole step.

Major scale formula: w w h w w w h 

  • (w = whole step, h = half step)
  • That’s why a C major scale has these notes:
  • C - - D - - E - F - - G - - A - - B - C

The major scale is the most important scale you’ll ever learn because everything in Western music theory is relative to the major scale.

How chords relate to a scale

Follow these steps to building chords from any major scale:

  • We’ll use C major as our example
  • Find all notes in the C major scale: C D E F G A B C
  • Choose a note to build a chord from
  • From there, apply the triad formula: Take a note – skip a note – take a note – skip a note – take a note
  • Ex. To build a D chord, we start with D (take a note), skip E, take F, skip G, and take A

This gives us D F A, which works out to D minor

This gives you seven chords and since they all live within a single scale, we call these diatonic chords:

  • C major = C E G
  • D minor = D F A
  • E minor = E G B
  • F major = F A C
  • G major = G B D
  • A minor = A C E
  • B diminished = B D F

How do you know if a chord should be major, minor, or diminished?

The answer lies within the major scale

  • The distance from one note to the next in a scale is not always the same. 
  • The notes E and F (as well as B and C) are only one half step apart.
  • All other notes are two half steps (or one whole step) apart (two frets on your guitar).

These different gaps between notes result in different chord qualities. Still confused?

  • Remember our take a note, skip a note triad formula?
  • The fact that note distances vary causes our triad formula to give us notes with different intervallic relationships.

Let’s look at two chords in the key of C major, starting with C major (C, E, G)

  • The distance from a C chord’s first two notes (C → E) is 4 half steps or a major 3rd interval
  • That’s why a C chord in the key of C (C, E, G) is major – it features a major 3rd interval
  • The major third in a chord is the determining factor of whether it’s major or minor

A D chord (D, F, A) in the key of C on the other hand, is minor.

  • The distance from a D chord’s first two notes (D → F) is 3 half steps or a minor 3rd interval.
  • That’s why a D chord in the key of C (C, E, G) is minor – it features a minor 3rd interval
  • The major third in a chord is the determining factor of whether it’s major or minor.

This knowledge – which notes are only a semitone apart and the formula for the major scale (w w h w w w h) – is something you simply memorize. 

It’ll help you understand chords, music theory and ultimately this will make it easier to communicate with other musicians.

Applying the triad formula to every note in a major scale and measuring the distance between each note in relation to the root note is a fantastic way to really understand this concept.

Intervals in major, minor, and diminished chords:

  • Major chord = root, major 3rd (4 half steps), perfect 5th (7 half steps from root)
  • Minor chord = root, minor 3rd (3 half steps), perfect 5th (7 half steps from root)
  • Diminished chord = root, minor 3rd (3 half steps), diminished 5th (6 half steps from root)

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