Vital minor chords

Animated Vital minor chords tab by ActionTab on guitar. So easy you'll be playing in minutes.

This is from the Theory section on Chords. These are the most common and important minor chords to know.

We start with the E minor chord and work our way up through the others. There are some popular variations of certain chords which we also play here for you to learn. With minor chords we tend to use barre chords more than with major chords, because they are much easier to play that way.

As with the major chords we looked at earlier, notice that some chords involve muting or omitting strings. When strumming it is often easier to mute unwanted strings using the thumb from the other side of the neck (cyan dot with M in it). This means that if you overstrum, the string is muted and won't affect your chord. This is easier than trying to skip the unwanted strings with your strumming hand, particularly when strumming quickly.

However, if the thumb-muting is causing you a problem, leave it for now and concentrate on getting the chords right without using it. Using your thumb in the centre of the back of the neck (rather than over the top edge of the fretboard to thumb-mute) will give you better opposable strength for fretting the strings, and also ensure your fingers approach the frets from a higher angle, stopping the accidental muting of adjacent strings. Once you can get good clean chords without accidentally muting adjacent strings, then you can start working on thumb-muting if you wish to use it.

1st chord is E minor (triad: E, G, B)
Strum (lowest to highest): Low E - B - E - G - B - E

2nd chord is F minor (triad: F, Ab, C)
Strum (lowest to highest): F - C - F - Ab - C - F

This uses an E shape barre chord. In other words, this chord is just like moving the previous E minor chord notes all up by 1 fret to play F minor. Use your 1st finger to act like the nut / capo.

3rd chord is G minor (triad: G, Bb, D)
Strum (lowest to highest): G - D - G - Bb - D - G

Again this minor chord is best played using the E shape barre chord starting at the third fret. It's easier than the other way of playing G minor, shown next...

4th chord is a popular G minor alternative (triad: G, Bb, D)
Strum (lowest to highest): G - Bb - D - G - D - G

The stretch between 1st and 2nd finger make this a hard chord to get used to playing for most people at first. This is why many guitarists use the previous G minor (barre chord). However, this way is still good if you can do it, for example, moving from G major to G minor quickly just involves moving your 1st finger down a fret.

5th chord is A minor (triad: A, C, E)
Strum (lowest to highest): x - A - E - A - C - E

A very common chord and, like the E shapes, is used as the basis for barre chords.

6th chord is B minor (triad: B, D, F#)
Strum (lowest to highest): x - B - F# - B - D - F#

Notice that this chord is just like the previous A minor chord - just all the notes are moved up by 2 frets to make it a B minor chord instead. The 'A minor shape' is a very common barre chord shape.

7th chord is C minor (triad: C, Eb, G)
Strum (lowest to highest): x - C - G - C - Eb - G

Same thing, just move the A minor barre shape up 1 more fret to play C minor.

8th chord is D minor (triad: D, F, A)
Strum (lowest to highest): x - D - A - D - F - A

This is another barre chord, however the next way of playing D minor is easy and as common...

9th chord is a popular D minor alternative (triad: D, F, A)
Strum (lowest to highest): x - x - D - A - D - F

Even if you don't understand all the barre chord stuff, don't worry - those things will make more sense over time as you work through this site. Just make sure that you practice these chords and learn their names. They are ESSENTIAL for guitar playing. If you are new to guitar, they may seem impossible, but stick at them - with practice your fingers will get stronger and quicker!

Oops! You need Flash 9+ and Javascript enabled

In order to view this ActionTab preview you need a web browser with Flash 9 or higher and Javascript. If this is your first time visiting you should be seeing a blue animated fretboard. If you feel your system meets these requirements but it still isn't working get in touch and we'll see if we can help.

Unfortunately Adobe Flash isn't supported on Apple's iPhone and iPad. If you are using a device running on Google Android you will be able to use Flash. Click on the Adobe Flash button below to download it.