Different Ways to Play a G Chord on Guitar

There are so many different ways to play a G chord on the guitar. That’s why it always humors me when someone says, you’re playing your G chord wrong, on one of my YouTube videos.

Honestly, you could play a G chord with no fingers or using all your fingers. That’s what’s so great about guitar, there’s plenty of options.

And that’s a good thing because we are all at different skill levels and we all have different sized and shaped hands and fingers. Bottom line. Use whichever is most comfortable for YOU!

I’m going to show you multiple different ways to play a G chord on the guitar starting with the easiest and moving on towards the hardest. If you would prefer to watch a video tutorial, check out my YouTube lesson below.

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G Chord Version 1 - Easiest

Now the thing you need to know about a G chord is that it only requires 3 notes – G, B and D. As long as you have those three notes, you have a G chord. Which is why the chord below is the easiest way to play a G chord on guitar using only 1 finger. That’s right, only 1 finger!

Below I have the third finger on the string. You will see why in later examples.

G Chord Version 2 - Easier

This version is kind of the opposite of version 1 in that it focuses more on playing notes on the top strings VS the bottom strings. Now before the music theory purists go yelling at me that this is a G6 chord, don’t worry. It’s just a trainer chord to help us build our way up to the full chord in version 3.

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G Chord Version 3 - The Normal Chord Version

When people think of a G chord, these are the versions they typically visualize. Now, I personally like to play my G chord with my third finger on the bottom string (remember version 1). I feel my hand is much stronger that way. Also, my hand and wrist feel a bit awkward when I use my pinky on the bottom string.

BUT, neither option is right or wrong.

They both work. It honestly depends on which is most comfortable to you. Some people like the pinky version because they think it’s easier to transition to a C chord, but with enough muscle memory, it really won’t make much of a difference down the road when your fingers are faster.

G Chord Version 4 - Cowboy G

This version of the chord is often referred to as a collection of chords called the Cowboy Chords. I call them the stuck like glue chords. You can Go Watch My Full Video On Stuck Like Glue Chords Here. I don’t think it’s that much harder, but it does require you to use all 4 of your fingers.

G Chord Version 5 - Hardest

The G major barre chord is going to be the hardest mainly because it’s a barre chord. Let’s face it. Barre chords aren’t easy. I don’t recommend that beginners use barre chords as they are very hard to play at first and require decent hand strength. It’s usually barre chords that make beginners quit playing guitar. So, if you’re a beginner, stick with the open chords above for now.

Believe it of not, there are many more different ways to play a G chord on the guitar but these are some of the most common forms that you will run into.

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