How to Play A Major ChordYou want to learn how to play Highway to Hell? Or your sex/love life has become so dull you figured out you must learn how to play Wonderwall?
Oh, but you don’t know how to play any of the A major chord guitar shapes?
Guitar Zoom to the rescue! We are going to teach you how to play one of the most used chords in popular music, the A major guitar chord!
The A major chord guitar players and all other instrumentalists often note as an A chord, so you don’t get confused.
We are going to show you two different ways of playing the A major guitar chord today!
One will be your standard A open chord, and the other one will be the A bar (or barre chord) on the 5th fret of the 6th string.
Watch this video to learn How to Play A Major Chord
Easy way of playing the A chord
If you are a total newbie, let's first define what an open chord is. The open chord is a chord that features one or more open strings and is usually played on the first three frets.
For this one, press the 2nd fret of the 4th string with your first finger. The 2nd fret of the 3rd string with your middle finger, and the 2nd fret of the 2nd string with your ring finger.
No, the spirit of Syd Barrett did not invade your consciousness by playing this chord! All three fingers should be on the 2nd fret...You are not tripping!
While playing this chord you need to play the bottom 5 strings. Make sure that your open 5th and 1st strings ring. If your fingers are muting those strings, make sure to adjust the angle of your fretting hand.
If you are struggling to put those three fingers in that tight space, we have a cool hack for you. Put the middle finger on the 2nd fret of the 4th string. Ring finger on the 2nd fret of the 3rd string, and your pinky on the 2nd fret of the 2nd string. Your pinky is much smaller after all, so that may be the right variant for you.
However, if your fingers are big, like Dave Mustaine big, you can try this version... Press the 2nd fret of the 4th string with your first finger. Use your middle finger to barre across the 2nd fret of the 3rd and 2nd string.
Advanced way of playing the A Chord
To play this one, use your first finger to press all 6 strings on the 5th fret. Use your middle finger to press the 6th fret of your 3rd string. Put your ring finger on the 7th fret of the 5th string, and your pinky on the 7th fret of the 4th string.
With this one, you are unlocking the majestic soundscape of the A chord played across all 6 strings.
Tips and practice suggestions
- While playing the open A major guitar chord, make sure that all your open strings ring out. You have to make sure that your fingers are not brushing up any unwanted strings, and thus muting them. Pick all the strings in succession, to make sure everything is ok. You may need to adjust your fretting hand’s angle
- When reading the chord diagram, you should know that ‘’X’’ signifies a string you do not want to play.
- When placing your fingers, make sure that you are behind the fret wire. Also, barre’s aside, make sure that you are pressing the strings with your fingertips.
- If playing a full A major chord is too difficult, start by playing it on the bottom 4 strings only. Place your ring finger on the 7th fret of the 4th string. Your middle finger on the 6th fret of the 3rd string. Barre your first finger across the 2nd and 1st string on the 5th fret.