How to Play a C major chord on Guitar

Major chords are relatively easier to play as compared to minor ones. It’s true that mostly people start off learning guitar with the help of an E minor chord, but learning major chords and then slowly moving to the minor chords is a better way to go about things.

A C major chord involves three fingers: ring, middle and index. The pinky is mostly left free because of the fact that that most people do not use it to play the first string (E string).

In terms of major chords, C chord is extremely easy to play. However, compared to all the other major chords, it is definitely a little different and difficult. Follow these steps in order to learn how to play the C major chord.


  • 1

    Hold the guitar firmly with the thumb wrapped around the neck and palm resting right underneath it.

  • 2

    Now you need to free your pinky finger and not touch any string with it.

  • 3

    The last string must be left open. This means that E will be left ringing.

  • 4

    Use your index finger to play the first fret of the second last string. In music theory you will be pressing the C note of the B string on your guitar.

  • 5

    Make sure you leave the third last string open. This is the G string and the G note will be left ringing during the C chord.

  • 6

    Use your middle finger to play the second fret of the third string from the top. In music theory you will be playing the E note on the D string.

  • 7

    Now press the third fret of the second string from the top. In music theory you will be playing the C note on the A string. This means that your chord will be starting with a C note and the second with two E notes and two C notes in total and a G being played in the middle. You can balance the chord by adding another G in it. You can do this by using your pinky finger to press the third fret of the first string. Which means you will be playing another G note but this time on the E string. That way you will be playing your guitar with this progression: G C E G C E.

  • 8

    This progression can also be written as: 3 3 2 0 1 0.

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