Guitar Chords Key of C

Guitar chords in key of C are among the first things a beginner guitarist will learn, being easy to finger and sounding great. Additionally, these chords serve as an entryway into learning music theory concepts such as scales, intervals and triads.

A C chord consists of the notes C, E and G. For added variety, additional key notes may also be added; as long as their sound remains pleasant to listen to.


As long as you know the CAGED major chord shapes, learning triads should be straightforward. Root notes of each shape make it easy to locate it on the fretboard, and their shapes can easily move up or down depending on which string groupings they belong to.

Triads consist of three intervals spaced apart between root note, third note and fifth note – root, third and fifth notes are separated by three intervals – making them easy to use and useful as replacements for full chords. Furthermore, dropping the middle note up an octave can create diminished chords – also known as ninth chords – that enable you to form any number of chords quickly with simple shapes. Triads can also add chord voicings into songs.


A chord is composed of multiple notes played simultaneously that work in unison to produce sound. For instance, in C major chord is formed using notes 1, 3, and 5. Any key can create its own chord by selecting any three notes that contain only natural (no sharps or flats) tones; chords made up of any key can contain any number of them!

To master basic chord progressions, begin strumming each note for four counts before moving on. Practice doing this until you can replicate this pattern without errors; to further your learning and develop your style further, try including rhythm in your strumming for increased timekeeping and style development. When ready, move onto more advanced progressions.


These chords have a melancholy sound, making them popular choices in darker songs. Additionally, they’re easy to finger on the fretboard allowing you to focus more on rhythm and melody of each tune.

C minor is the starting minor chord in this key and can be played either openly or as a barred shape at either of the third or eighth frets, usually accompanying F minor or G minor 7 in its progression.

This chord is in first inversion, meaning its third note lies on the bottom. To create fuller sounds, inversions of this chord often involve inverting with its fifth sound on top; similarly, its G minor equivalent has its fifth on top – making it a diminished chord.


The dominant guitar chord is an indispensable tool in music of all genres and types, from classical orchestral works like Mozart symphonies to Top 40 pop. From Mozart symphonies to Top 40 pop, you can hear this chord everywhere from Mozart symphonies to Top 40 pop. Its tonic note forms its core, while its leading tone often leads to either another degree in the scale.

At times, dominant chords can be resolved into triads to give their progression an appealing sense of closure – Hank Williams used this chord progression on his hit “Hey Good Lookin'”. However, adding additional chords can add further drama – dominance seventh chord can be extended into ninth, eleventh and thirteenth chords with additional intervals above root notes for added drama.


Scale is the set of notes that form a key, and all chords in that key will contain at least one note from its scale as their point of origin. For example, starting on C will result in C major, C minor and D major chords being used – these chords (triads).

Chord progression refers to the series of chords produced when chords are harmonized in that key. Musicians typically don’t limit themselves to using only chords from within their key; rather, they often add notes from outside to create different sounding chords.

Understanding the differences between chords requires knowledge of intervals (the distance between two notes – for instance between C and E would be considered a major third) as this topic is covered in our article on Intervals.