Open Position Chords

PUBLISHED: Nov 4, 2013 • UPDATED: Jan 3, 2020 • LESSON CODE: UL114a • VISITS: 35

ukulele Subjects: beginnerchordscore

Open Position Chords

The basic first chords most players learn. There are the chords in the first one, two, three and fours frets of the ukulele and include at least one open string.

The basic first chords most players learn. There are the chords in the first one, two, three and fours frets of the ukulele and include at least one open string.

C

Open Position Chords are the basic, first chords most ukulele players learn. These chords are played in the fret one, two, three and four area of the ukulele and include at least one open string in the chord.

Here is a FREE chart of the Basic Open Position Ukulele Chords in common keys to get you started in C tuning, high or low “G”. For most simple songs the chords all are from the main key and stay in that key.

The basic first chords most players learn. There are the chords in the first one, two, three and fours frets of the ukulele and include at least one open string.

Learning Chords

The The Song Approach is to pick a song that you would like to learn and those are the chords you need to learn. Look them up, ask a friend or take a lesson or two. Then practice away.

A song is like a recipe, it contains ingredients: the chords, lyrics, and melody. The style and arrangement can be like the original recording or your own arrangement.

For basic open position chords in a few common keys, this approach will get you started. Simply memorize the shape and sound of each chord required.

Another approach is to learn the common chords that show up in common keys and songs. This is especially helpful for occasions where you might have never played a particular song before or are reading the chords as you go. This happens a lot at jam sessions, meetup groups and club play-a-longs. Still, just memorize the shape and should of the chord.

All you really need is to know one of each chord you might encounter.

For Folk, Rock, Pop, Country and and Bluegrass common major keys are C, G, D, A, and E.

Common Chords for the Key of C Major and the C Major Scale

The key of C Major is one of the most common keys. It’s sometimes called the learning key as it corresponds to the white keys if the piano. It’s a good place to start.

The basic chords are:

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

The diminished chord rarely is rarely used and a G7 is substituted for it. A Diminished Seventh chord can also substitute for the diminished chord.

With major chords being the most common chord the “major” part of the chord is typically not said or notated. If you say play a C chord, it’s understood to mean “C Major”. The minor chord type is shortened to “min” or “m”. The diminished notation is shortened to “dim” or a degree sign. Leaving use with an easier to read list.

  • C
  • Dm
  • Em
  • F
  • G
  • Am
  • or Bdim

Any one of the chords can be a seventh chord: C7, D7, E7, F7, G7, A7, and B7. These are 4-part chords containing four notes with no duplicate notes. All but the G7 are chords outside of the key of C major but common.

Here are all the possible open position seventh chords. For the chords that do not have an open position form their basic movable form is shown.

See the Key Signatures series of lessons for the common chords to all 15 major keys.

The Second Approach, which is almost required with movable form and *jazz* chords is to have a core set of chords and a system for deriving additional chords from those known chords. And, knowing where and how chords are created and used.

End of Lesson - Thanks, Hope You Enjoyed It!

Related Lessons

Related Lessons for Open Position Chords at this time.

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Basic Open Position `Ukulele Chord Chart

A core set of basic `ukulele chords* that ALL Ukulele players should know.

Basic Open Position `Ukulele Chord Chart for Lefties

A core set of basic ukulele chords that ALL Ukulele players should know. For Lefties!

Understanding a `Ukulele Chord Diagram

The basic `Ukulele chord diagram is explained.

Types of `Ukulele Chords

Open position chords, movable form chords, 4-part "jazz" chords, and free form chords.

Basic Movable Form Chords

Traditional and Contemporary Triads

Major, minor, diminished and augmented, sus2, sus4, add2 and add9 triads.

4-part Contemporary Chords, a.k.a. Jazz Chords

Free Form Chords

No system - Your know the notes of the fingerboard and the notes of chords and can create these as needed.

Lesson Books

Related Books for Open Position Chords at this time.

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A Guide to Ukulele Chords for Lefties

Covers the basic ukulele chords that ALL ukulele players SHOULD know - for Lefties.

Ukulele Chords - C Tuning

The ukulele chord book for every ukulele gig bag or case. New Updated 2 Printing.

A Guide to Ukulele Chords

Covers the basic ukulele chords that ALL ukulele players SHOULD know.

A Guide to Ukulele Chords, 2nd Edition

Covering the basic ukulele chords that ALL ukulele players SHOULD know.

Learning the Ukulele Fingerboard - C Tuning

Finally, learn the names of the notes of the fingerboard. - C tuning

Ukulele Chords - G Tuning

The ukulele chord book for every ukulele gig bag or case.

Related Songs

Related Songs for Open Position Chords at this time.

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Any Song Will Do

When any song here can be used for the concepts in the lessons.

Related Lesson Series

Related Lessons Series for Open Position Chords at this time.

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Open Position Chords

This series explores open position chords and their movable form. As well as a few of their derived chords.

Related Lesson Files, Resources and Assets

Related Assets for Open Position Chords at this time.

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Basic Ukulele Chord Chart

A chart of the most common ukulele chords in the most common keys of C, G, D, A, and E.

Ukulele Fingerboard Chart for C Tuning, Low or High G

Ukulele Fingerboard Chart for C Tuning, Low or High G.


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