Ever tried scoring and analyzing the guitar chords on the musical piece? Then you realize, you are hooked up on a particular guitar chord. Then you ask yourself ‘how many guitar chords are there?’
This is a very common question amidst beginners, who are so passionate about playing and learning as many as possible the guitar chords available.
Therefore, learn the basic chords and gradually keep learning other chord patterns, as they are closer to being infinite. But no, they are not. So you can know them reading this article.
For conveniences, the guitar chords are grouped based on the 12 keys present in music, leaving out the enharmonic keys. So here they are;
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They are chords made up of just three notes. It consists of the root note, a major third, and a perfect fifth.
For example, a major triad of the key C would look like this, C E G. With C as the root note, E the major third and G the perfect fifth.
Just like the major triads, they have three notes. They are chords made up of the root, minor third and a perfect fifth.
As said earlier that they are similar to the major triads, the only difference is the third note. The major having a major third and the minor getting the minor chord.
For instance, the minor chord C triad will look like this; C Eb G.
They are basically a minor triad with a flattened or diminished fifth. They consist of two minor chords above their root chords. The key C type will look just like this; C-Eb-Gb.
They are triads with an augmented fifth. They are denoted with a + or aug e.g. C+. A C augmented triad will look like this; C-E-G#. This marks the end to the types of triads present. That is, there are just four types of triads as stated above.
Diminished 7TH Chords
They can be seen as the advanced form of the triads. They are chords with a diminished triad and a diminished seventh. It is composed of the root note with the minor third, diminished fifth and a diminished seventh. An example on the key of C looks like this; C-Eb-Gb-Bb
Major 6TH Chords
They are major triad with the interval of a sixth note added. They are composed of your root note, your major third, perfect fifth and finally the sixth.
Also, they are referred to as the added sixth chord. Denoted as C6 or CM6, when built on the key of C and looks like this; C-E-G-A with a note being the added major sixth.
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Minor 6TH Chords
These are chords, that have their major sixth added to the minor triads. It is in this order of the root note, minor third, perfect fifth and then the major sixth. It is structured this way on the key of C as; C-Eb-G-A
Dominant 7TH Chords
They are chords composed of the root, major third, perfect fifth, and a minor seventh. They are the major triads with a minor seventh. In regards to the composition, they can also be called the major, minor seventh chord. An example of this on the G key looks like this; G-B-D-F.
Major 7TH Chords
They are chords with the major triads and the major seventh. The seventh note being a major makes it different from the diminished having a minor instead. They are in this format of the root note, major third, perfect fifth and the major seventh. They are commonly written as Cmaj7 in C and looks like this C-E-G-B
Minor 7TH Chords
They are chords with the minor triads with the minor seventh. More so, they are composed of the root, minor third, perfect fifth and the minor seventh. They are denoted as m7. An example in the key of C looks like this; C- Eb-G-Bb.
Half Diminished Chords
These are chords composed of the root note, minor third, a flattened fifth and a minor seventh. They can be called the half-diminished seventh chords or minor seventh flat five chords. An example of half-diminished chords in C; C-Eb-Gb-Bb.
These are chords with the major triads, minor seventh and a major 9th. They are composed of the root note, major third, perfect fifth, minor seventh and a major 9th. E.g. C-E-G-Bb-D.
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Flat 9TH Chords
They are chords with the minor triads, minor seventh and a major 9th. That is the root note, minor third, perfect fifth, minor seventh and a major 9th. An example is the key of F is seen as; F-Ab-C-Eb-G.
9TH / Major 7TH Chords
These consist of a major triad, major seventh chord and a major ninth. That is the root note, major third, perfect fifth, major seventh and a major ninth. They are denoted as cmaj9. An example in C looks like this; C-E-G-B-D
9TH /Minor 7TH Chords
They are chords with the minor triads, the minor seventh and major ninth. That’s the root, minor third, perfect fifth, minor seventh and major ninth. Example of this is; C-Eb-G-Bb-D
This is an octave plus a fourth interval between the root note and eleventh.
These are dominant chords with four extra notes to the major triads. They are the minor seventh, ninth, eleventh and thirteenth.
These are chords in which the major or minor third is omitted and replaced with a perfect four or major second, sus4 or sus2 respectively
Flat 5TH Chords
They are dominant seventh chords with a flattened fifth rather than the perfect fifth. They are composed of the root note, major third, diminished fifth and a minor seventh.
Flat 5TH Maj 7TH Chords
These are chords with a flattened fifth and a major seventh. They are composed of the root note, major third, diminished fifth and a major seventh.
Furthermore, there are more to these chords in that each chord has its own inversions. That is each triad can be structured in different ways, chord with 4 notes can be structured four different ways and so on.
Learning to play all your chords keeps you at the top. The point is not at knowing all the chords therein, but to memorize and be perfect at them. So you don’t have to ask how many guitar chords are there anymore – get to work.
Take it slow, learn the basics and drive your progress from the basics. Remember there are more to playing your guitar than the chords, so don’t get so engrossed at learning the chords. Find your balance and strike.