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Switching Chords

How to Move Fluidly Between Em and Am Chords

Switching chords is the number one frustration among new guitar students. With patience and at least 10 minutes of practice every day, you'll make huge progress in a short amount of time.

You now know two chords on the guitar. Let's put them together! First, start with the Am chord. Remember how we switched from Em to Am? Now, you'll do the opposite. As if your middle and ring fingers are glued together, lift them off of the strings and move them up to the 4th and 5th strings for the Em chord. Your index finger will come off completely. Now practice the transition from the Em to Am. Go back and forth a bit without strumming and focus on using as little movement as possible.

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The tab below shows a basic strumming pattern using single bass notes for both of these chords. For the Am chord, the bass note you'll hit is the 5th string open.

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