How to play

How to play the E minor over F chord on guitar

Learn to play the E minor over F chord, featured in hits like "Wonderwall" and "Creep."

The Em/F chord

The Em/F chord, pronounced "E minor over F," is a unique voicing that adds a somber yet intriguing sound to various musical genres. This chord is played by fretting an E minor chord shape while using an F note as the bass, creating a haunting and ethereal atmosphere. The Em/F chord is notably used in alternative, folk, and indie music to evoke melancholic emotions.

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

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Finger placement for Em/F chord

The most common way to play the E minor over F chord on guitar is as a barre chord on the 1st fret.

Follow these finger positions to play a E minor over F chord on your guitar:

  1. Place your index finger across all six strings on the 1st fret, creating a barre chord.
  2. Place your middle finger on the 2nd fret of the 2nd (B) string.
  3. Place your ring finger on the 3rd fret of the 4th (D) string.

Strum all six strings together to play the E minor over F chord. Make sure to apply enough pressure with your index finger to cleanly fret all the strings.

How to play an easy Em/F chord on guitar

If you're a beginner looking to play a simpler version of the E minor over F chord, try playing an F major chord and lifting your middle finger off the 3rd (G) string. This creates an Em/F chord without the need for a barre, making it easier to play and transition between chords.

How to play a Em/F bar chord

The E minor over F barre chord is a great alternative to the standard Em/F chord, as it allows for easier transitions and a fuller sound.

Here's how to play a E minor over F bar chord:

  1. Place your index finger on the 1st fret of all six strings, creating a barre.
  2. Place your middle finger on the 2nd fret of the 3rd (G) string.
  3. Place your ring finger on the 3rd fret of the 5th (A) string.
  4. Place your pinky finger on the 3rd fret of the 4th (D) string.
  5. Strum from the 6th (low E) string down to the 1st (high E) string.

Common Em/F chord progressions

The E minor over F chord progression, also known as Em/F, creates a melancholic and introspective mood in music. This progression is often used to evoke feelings of longing, sadness, or contemplation. Here are some common chord progressions featuring Em/F:

  • i - III - VII - iv (Em/F - G - D - Am) - Used in "Tears in Heaven" by Eric Clapton and "Wonderwall" by Oasis
  • i - VII - VI - VII (Em/F - D - C - D) - Used in "Fast Car" by Tracy Chapman and "Good Riddance (Time of Your Life)" by Green Day
  • i - VI - III - VII (Em/F - C - G - D)
  • i - VI - VII - IV (Em/F - C - D - A)
  • i - iv - VII - III (Em/F - Am - D - G)

Drills to master the Em/F chord

To master the E minor over F guitar chord, try playing the individual notes (F, E, G, B) in sequence, both ascending and descending. Focus on clean, crisp notes and maintain a steady rhythm. Start slowly and gradually increase your speed as you become more comfortable.

Another effective drill is to practice transitioning between the E minor over F chord and other common chords like C, G, or A minor. Play simple chord progressions, ensuring smooth transitions and proper finger placement. Regularly incorporating these drills into your practice routine will help you develop muscle memory and mastery of this chord.

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Songs that feature the Em/F chord

Here are 10 popular songs you can play with the E minor over F chord:

  1. Wonderwall by Oasis (Em, G, D, A7sus4)
  2. Losing My Religion by R.E.M. (Am, Em, Dm, G, F)
  3. The A Team by Ed Sheeran (Em, G, D, A)
  4. Fast Car by Tracy Chapman (C, G, Em, D)
  5. Mad World by Gary Jules (Em, G, D, A, Am)
  6. Zombie by The Cranberries (Em, C, G, D)
  7. Creep by Radiohead (G, B, C, Cm)
  8. Good Riddance (Time of Your Life) by Green Day (G, C, D, Em)
  9. Wish You Were Here by Pink Floyd (Em, G, Am, C, D)
  10. Stairway to Heaven by Led Zeppelin (Am, G, C, D, F)

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.

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