How to play

How to play the C major over G chord on guitar

Unlock the secrets of hit songs like "Let It Be" and "Sweet Home Alabama".

The C major over G chord

The C chord, pronounced "C major over G," is a unique voicing that combines the bright, cheerful sound of a C major chord with the low, resonant bass note of a G. This chord is commonly used in rock, pop, and country music to add richness and depth to progressions. Notable songs featuring the C/G chord include "Let It Be" by The Beatles.

There are many ways to play a chord. Here's a diagram for the most common C major over G chord. We've also included other versions below.

Hero Image

Unlock your playing potential in online guitar lessons with experts on Til. Start today and achieve your guitar goals quickly. Find a top-rated teacher.

Finger placement for C major over G chord

The most common way to play a C major over G chord on guitar is to use a barre chord shape on the 3rd fret.

Follow these finger positions to play a C major over G chord on your guitar:

  1. Place your index finger across all six strings at the 3rd fret, forming a barre.
  2. Place your ring finger on the 5th fret of the 5th (A) string.
  3. Place your pinky finger on the 5th fret of the 4th (D) string.
  4. Place your middle finger on the 4th fret of the 3rd (G) string.

To strum this chord, use a downward motion starting from the 5th (A) string, hitting all the strings down to the 1st (high E) string. You can also include upward strums for a fuller sound.

How to play an easy C major over G chord on guitar

If you're a beginner looking to play a simpler version of the C major over G chord, try this:

  1. Place your index finger on the 3rd fret of the 1st (high E) string.
  2. Place your middle finger on the 2nd fret of the 5th (A) string.
  3. Strum only these two strings together.

This simplified version still captures the essence of the C major over G sound.

How to play a C major over G bar chord

Playing a C major over G barre chord can be a great way to add variety and richness to your guitar playing, especially when transitioning between chords.

Here's how to play a C major over G barre chord:

  1. Place your index finger across the 3rd fret, covering all six strings.
  2. Place your middle finger on the 5th fret of the 4th (D) string.
  3. Place your ring finger on the 5th fret of the 5th (A) string.
  4. Place your pinky finger on the 5th fret of the 1st (high E) string.
  5. Strum from the 5th (A) string down to the 1st (high E) string.

Common C major over G chord progressions

The C major chord played over a G bass note, known as a C/G chord, adds a sense of movement and tension to a progression. It's often used as a passing chord to connect other chords smoothly, creating a feeling of anticipation or temporary instability before resolving. Here are some common chord progressions featuring the C/G chord:

  • I - V<sup>6</sup>/IV - IV - V (C - C/G - F - G) - Used in "Let It Be" by The Beatles and "Imagine" by John Lennon
  • I - V<sup>6</sup>/IV - vi - V (C - C/G - Am - G)
  • I - V<sup>6</sup>/IV - IV - V<sup>6</sup> (C - C/G - F - D/F#)
  • I - V<sup>6</sup>/IV - ii<sup>7</sup> - V (C - C/G - Dm7 - G)
  • I - iii - V<sup>6</sup>/IV - IV (C - Em - C/G - F)

Drills to master the C major over G chord

To master the C major over G guitar chord, try this simple drill: play each note of the chord individually, starting with the G, then C, and finally E. Focus on clarity and precision as you pluck each string. Once comfortable, practice transitioning between the notes in different patterns, such as G-C-E, G-E-C, or C-E-G.

Another effective drill is to strum the chord repeatedly, concentrating on maintaining consistent pressure and positioning. Start with slow, deliberate strums and gradually increase your speed while ensuring each note rings out clearly. Regular practice will help develop muscle memory and fluidity.

Unlock your playing potential in online guitar lessons with experts on Til. Start today and achieve your guitar goals quickly. Find a top-rated teacher.

Abbey F.

"Nena tailored the class to us and what we wanted to learn. She gave us tips and tricks on how to play songs we wanted at whatever level we are at, I always felt encouraged. This class has been an invaluable part of my guitar playing journey."

Songs that feature the C major over G chord

Here are 10 popular songs you can play with the C major over G chord:

  1. Hey Jude by The Beatles (G, D, F, C, Am)
  2. Let It Be by The Beatles (C, G, Am, F)
  3. Knockin' on Heaven's Door by Bob Dylan (G, D, Am7, C)
  4. Sweet Home Alabama by Lynyrd Skynyrd (D, C, G)
  5. Peaceful Easy Feeling by Eagles (E, D, A, G, C)
  6. The Joker by Steve Miller Band (F, C, G, D)
  7. Wish You Were Here by Pink Floyd (G, D, Am, C)
  8. Wonderwall by Oasis (Em, G, D, A7sus4)
  9. Leaving on a Jet Plane by John Denver (G, C, D)
  10. Viva la Vida by Coldplay (C, D, G, Em)

How a guitar teacher can help

If you feel stuck in your playing, it might help to take personalized guitar lessons with an expert guitarist. Taking lessons with a pro gives you access to the skills, feedback, and motivation to reach your goals.

You can find expert guitar teachers to support you in the journey. Thousands of people have turned to online guitar lessons on Til, instead of traditional in-person lessons, because Til gives you access to the best teachers in the world from the comfort of home. And with flexible scheduling, secure payments, lesson recordings, and a private chat with your teacher–there’s never been a better way to learn guitar.

Learn guitar all over the world