Guitar Chords: Why They Are Important
There are two main ways to play songs from start to finish. you can play using guitar tablature, also known as guitar tab, or you can play songs using guitar chords, and rhythm with lead sheets. The big problem with guitar tab is that most guitar tab songs are going to run 8-20 pages. Realistically, you can’t flip pages every 20 seconds on stage, so you have two choices at this point, memorize every single note exactly and perfectly throughout the entire song, or use lead sheets. Now, memorizing every single note and guitar chord isn’t a bad idea until you realize you have to memorize every single note perfectly for 10+ songs, because no one wants to hear you play just one song. This is where lead sheets excel. This isn’t to say that guitar tabs are bad, in fact we have a large selection of free guitar tabs, just to say that sometimes lead sheets are better.
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Lead sheets are a shortcut version to playing a song by utilizing guitar chords, and rhythm to get the general feel of the song. no, you won’t be playing the song perfectly, note-for-note, but if you’re honest with yourself, the real goal is to play songs that other people recognize and understand. If your goal is to play every single song note for note, exactly, then you should join a tribute band, because the only people that will know (or care for that matter) whether or not you played the song perfectly, and exactly are hardcore dedicated fans who obsess over their favorite band’s music.
Learning to use lead sheets with guitar chords and rhythm are for people who want to get the general feel for the song in roughly 1-2 lessons, but not memorize everything perfectly. Thus, using lead sheets with guitar chords and rhythm are perfect for beginners, and intermediate players who want to spend 20 minutes learning a song, not 20 weeks. Yes, there are millions of guitar chords. No, you do not need to learn them all. In fact, there are literally hundreds songs you can play with just a few beginning guitar chords, and hundreds more you can play with another 20 or so intermediate guitar chords.
Guitar Chords vs. Guitar Tabs
Guitar chords and lyrics sheets (lead sheets) really give you the benefit of playing a song from start to finish without having to print 25 pages of tablature for one song. However, if you want to learn a song or a guitar solo note for note, there really is no better way to do it than through guitar tab. Traditional guitar tab is lengthy, but also very accurate. You can browse our free guitar tabs in PDF here.
Download Blank Guitar Chord Sheets
If you would like to make custom guitar chord charts to write out new guitar chords to that awesome new song you just wrote, then you’ve come to the right place! We offer free blank guitar chord charts, as well as free blank guitar tab, neck diagrams and much more.
The Most Important Guitar Chords
There are over 5,000,000 (five million) chords on guitar. That number is just unimaginable. There is good news though. With all those guitar chords, there are only a handful of guitar chords that you will really use on a daily basis playing your favorite songs. Typically, these would be major and minor chords, while minor 7, major 7, sus4, and sus2 guitar chords are less popular. If you are new to guitar, spend your time learning the basic guitar chords first: A B C D E F G Major, and A B C D E F G minor. Those 14 chords will carry you quite far, and many of our rock and blues guitar songs use those chords.