In today’s guitar lesson, we’re going to look at how you can recycle some chord knowledge you’ve already got, and get some extra mileage out of it. We’re going to look at four different chord shapes, then pull just two strings from each one. This will give us two different ways to play major chords, and two different ways to play minor chords.
Technically speaking, if you’re playing just two notes, you’re not playing an actual chord. But that’s fine of course – that’s not the intention here. This technique is really useful for creating secondary guitar parts, or perhaps little melodic lead lines to throw in between vocals, that sort of thing. We’re not trying to create a full rhythm section sound here.
There are many different ways to play diads (that’s two notes played together). I’ve highlighted a few here, but I encourage you to get creative and figure out some of your own! Additionally, start listening for these in music that you like – I guarantee you’ll start hearing them, because they’re all over the place.
The jam track we’re using is very simple, just a I IV vi V progression in G major, which is G, C, Em, D. It’s looped a bunch of times at the end of the video, but you can also listen to it using the button below, or even download it if you wish. Enjoy!
If you want to go further with triads, I made a whole course focusing in on this stuff a little while ago, called Secrets of Tasty Riffs & Solos.
Let me know in the comments below if the things you heard in this lesson remind you of any songs, or let me know how you’re using these in your own playing!