Topic 7, Lesson 1
In Progress

A Major Chord

Daniel February 13, 2021
Topic Progress
0% Complete


The A Major chord is considered another “beginner chord” shape. Remember that the term “Major” is assumed, so we can just call this chord “A”.

To put it really plainly, it’s just an Em that’s moved down one string, then your ring finger is added to the B string, also in 2nd fret.

If you have trouble learning this chord, a very effective exercise is to just practice changing between Em and A – again remembering to focus on the process used to form each chord. As you move from Em to A, you should be thinking “down, add one” (which means move your Em shape down a string, then add one finger to the B string). This form of simplification is common amongst guitarists and can be a very effective tool when it comes to learning just about anything.

As you change back to Em, simply reverse this process – “up, remove one”.

The A chord should be strummed from the A string onward (A, D, G, B & E strings). You’ll probably end up thinking “how on earth can we miss that Low E string when strumming??” The real trick here is to actually use your thumb to touch the Low E so that it doesn’t vibrate when strummed. Instead, it’ll make a “dead” sound which you won’t hear over the clearly played strings.

If that sounds complicated –  don’t stress. You’re best off simply practicing the chord shape itself before worrying about getting the correct strings. This is something that you’ll eventually learn over a long period of time.

The Video Lesson:

Close Up Version:


  • Consider the A Major chord to just be an Em that’s moved down one string, then add the ring finger to the B string
  • The best way to play it is to have your thumb mute the Low E, so you can simply strum all six strings and still get the correct sound
  • First, focus on just getting the correct shape and the strumming will eventually come
  • The High E string is often accidentally muted – try and really curl your fingers so they’re reaching over the other strings
  • Our Chord Diagram is below: