To effectively play rhythm and chords in real life situations, you need to focus on the transitions and not just single static chord shapes.

Your fingers’ ability to find and press the strings on to the fretboard without muting any of the notes. That is the skill involved in being able to hold single static chords on the guitar.

  • pressing the correct string/fret
  • making sure the bottom of a finger is not muting the below string

At least in the case of open chords, those are the details you have to look into when you are starting to play chords. Of course they are important, but as early as possible start focusing on the minute details that will help you make transitions between chords as smooth and quickly as possible.

Like in the case of any skill, with a bit of awareness we can see the sub skills and micro movements that help you reduce delay between chord changes and be an effective chord player.

For example, A minor to C major chord change

Maybe you know how to do it, maybe you are still working on it or have not started it.

You need to move only one finger to execute the transition. The move from 3rd string second fret of the A minor to 5th string 3rd fret of the c Major.

Finger movement optimization: When you practice the chord change between Am and C major, can you make sure that the other two fingers remain in position and you’re moving just one finger?

At a later stage when you free up the index finger and start playing barre chords too, this kind of attention to detail will make sure that you’re not wasting time between chord changes, keeping the rhythm intact without delays.

Basic body/finger level best practices

Are you pressing your elbow into your body? Don’t.Instead start using more of the opposable thumb as the source of pressure.

What is the position of your thumb? Are you using your thumb behind the fingers which need the most support?

Want to learn more techniques and methods that will help you be the best chord player that you can be? Use rhythm chord basics section from to learn transitions the proper way while reinforcing the basic best practices. As a member you’re single membership will let you access any of the resources based on your skill and goals. No extra fees.

Family of chords, patterns and remembering chords

Most of the songs which we listened to and we play, vim have cards based on the major scale or natural/harmonic minor family of chords.

therefore having an understanding of the basic family of chords method is a good starting point if you want to advance with chord playing for usual songs or to be able to slowly find chords for songs on your own.

If you want to play chords of find chords for more Indian type of songs, you will need to expand your your understanding to to more Ragas and also be able to find exact and approximate chords from melody phrases without depending on on family of chords or key of the song.

Remembering chords or improvising

An understanding of the group of chords that come together will also naturally help you with remembering the chords that you need to play for the song.

like I mentioned before, finding your own chords and also improvising while someone else is playing the melody or singing also becomes easier once you know the basic grouping of chords.

It is like knowing which alphabets come together to form particular words. Someone with the word level understanding of language will be able to remember and reproduce better than someone who understands only alphabets and no further grouping.

Start by knowing which chords come together in the c major scale family.

By the time you try to find chords for double harmonic major or raga mayamalavagowla, beyond just family of chords by stacking scale notes, you can use chords directly from melody phrases which may contain non-scale chord notes.

The ragachords and chord code sections within ragacourses will give you patterns and methods to connect chords to the guitar, and be able to find your own chords, starting from simple to more advanced methods. You can choose an option based on your need. Change as you wish. 

Indian guitar, carnatic, rhythm and chords, finding chords, playing by ear etc(Click to see)
Free resources at