PlayAlong Lesson 7 - F and A Chords

Focus on the F and A Chords

Theory Note - I, IV and V Chords

To play along with many popular songs you can often get by with just three chords: I, IV, and V. In the key of G these chords are G(I), C(IV) and D(V). In the key of D the chords are D(I), G(IV), and A(V). In the key of C they are C(I), F(IV) and G(V). In this lesson we focus on the F and A chords in order to complete the trio of chords most often used in the C, D, and G chords.

The Simple F Chord

Here are two versions of the same song. In the video you can follow along as I play. In the notated version you can see the melody notes with chords indicated. Try both versions.

Twinkle, Twinkle in C

This version of the song "Twinkle, Twinkle" is in the key of C, and is good practice for moving between the I, IV, and V chords.

You Are My Sunshine in C

This traditional song is also in the key of C. Watch the video closely to se how to make the transition from C to F chords.

The Basic A Chord

The A chord requires you to hold down three adjacent strings at the same fret. As usual there are at least three different ways to play an A chord. We explain them in this video, and explain our preferences.

Transitioning Between D and A Chords

The D and A chords are often found together and require a smooth transition. Here we explain the concept of the "anchor finger" to show how the transition can be made more smoothly.

Ode to Joy in D

We have used "Ode to Joy" in other lessons because it is a well known and pleasantly melodic tune. Here we use it to demonstrate and practice the D-G-A combination of chords.

Preview of Lesson 8

This is an oldie but a goodie. It uses mostly the I and V chords (C and G), with one instance of an F chord in the chorus. You can either try a simplified version of the F chord, or just skip it.

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