How to Play Guitar Chords Without the E String

guitar chords without e string

Though most chords require all six strings for sounding properly, not every one does necessitate the fifth E string being plucked. Some chords can still sound great without its addition.

Above is an A major open chord; try playing it without E string!

A Major

As a beginner guitarist, learning the E major chord is of critical importance. It can be found in numerous songs across genres – U2’s “Desire,” Coldplay’s “Yellow” and R.E.M’s “Everyone Hurts.” Additionally, its advantage of using all six strings simultaneously, with only its low E string being open allows the chord to sound full and rich.

You are likely to come across this chord fingering in most guitar books and online tutorials, making it the go-to technique for beginners to learn and master this chord. Though, beginners may encounter difficulties due to your first finger muting the open A string (the 1st string).

There are various methods to play this chord that allow its low E note to ring out, making it easier to move up and down the neck of the guitar. One common technique involves using your index, middle, and ring fingers to fret D, G and B strings while leaving unmuted the open A string.

C Major

The open C chord is an iconic sound, often used across genres of songs. To play it without using an E string, move your index finger to the third fret of A string while leaving sixth string open – this produces a power chord reminiscent of F major which would work perfectly as a transition from A minor chords into major ones, for instance.

When playing chords, either the root or fifth should serve as the bass note; therefore it would be best to omit the low E string altogether in this instance as this will create more of an imbalanced sound in terms of chord construction as you’ll only be playing five out of six strings at any one time.

This technique is easy to learn and practice and can help develop finger dexterity for barre chords. Just make sure that when touching strings at an acute angle with only your fingertips touching them so as to not hit or mutes other strings accidentally.

E Major

This chord can often be found in songs beginning with an open E chord (such as in “Scarlet Begonias” by Grateful Dead). Your middle finger should be used to play this shape at either fret 2 or higher for barre chord.

When learning guitar chords, make sure to practice on all four high strings – this will allow for maximum tension and tone! Make sure that when practicing chords on these higher strings you always use fingertips as this will elicit the best sound from them and help identify problems such as muffled or unsounding chords or fretting new positions on your fretboard – important steps toward becoming an advanced guitarist!