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Learn How to build Guitar Chord Progression from a Scale – Beginners Guitar Lesson

Written by Altaf Shaikh

If you are playing Guitar since just a few weeks or months, then it is the basic and very important thing for you as a beginner guitar player to learn how to build guitar chord progression from a scale. And yes, it is very easy. You only need to follow the theory which will be explained below in this article.

So, get ready and hold your guitar to bring an action on whatever you read through my article. There is a lot more to learn. But before I start having a discussion about how to find the chord and make the progression from scale, you just need to know a little thing about chords and scales.

You can find many definitions of chord and scale if you browse on the internet. But to make them easier I have defined it in a simple way for you.

Also Read: Learn Guitar on your own-Beginners exercise. 

What is Chord?

A Chord is basically a group of notes which are played together to create a melody as a basis of harmony. And they are basically of three or more notes which are called triads. For an example: C, E, and G are the triads of the C major chord and they are the 1st, 3rd and 5th note of the C major scale.


Guitar 'C' Chord

What is Scale?

When some notes are collected and played in ascending or descending order to reach the same note of another octave is called scale. Normally a major and minor scale consists of 7 notes and the first note of the scale is ‘root note’. For an example: C, D, E, F, G, A, B, they are notes of the C major scale where C is the root note.

Read AlsoOrigin and Anatomy of Guitar- A Beginners Guide for Newbie on Guitar Lessons. 

How to Build guitar chord progression from a scale:

There is a lot of ways to build chord progression. But here I have given the basic idea of how to find the chord and build chord progression from a scale which I have mentioned below.


Before the explanation, you will have to keep a mantra in your mind. And the mantra is “major, major, minor, major, major, minor, diminish”, which are used on the major scale. Let us take C major scale as an example. We have 7 different notes in this scale which I have mentioned earlier and they are C, D, E, F, G, A, B.

C major guitar scale


Now, here are the 7 different chords for you, C major, D major, E minor, F major, G major, A minor, B diminished which are related to the notes of the C major scale which came from the above-mentioned mantra. Play the chords one after another you will find a melody which came from the relation among them. Practice it until you can play the pattern perfectly on a particular metronome.


Again let me tell you that there is no particular rule or pattern for playing the chords and it is also not necessary to play all the chords to create a progression. It depends on what kind of melody you want to create by applying these chords independently. For an example: “C, Am, F, G”, “C, Dm, F, C” etc.


So you can also apply the same idea on the other major chords. For an example: let us take the scale A major which has A, B, C#, D, E, F#, G# notes. So here you can follow the same mantra and find A major, B major, C# minor, D major, E major, F# minor, G# diminished chords. And follow the same idea of building the chord progression.

It is now clear that how we have found the guitar chords and applied it to make progression. In the next article, I will bring the idea of how to use a scale on chord progression. Till then stay tuned and have fun with your guitar. If you have any doubt or confusion regarding this lesson, do let me know.

Read Also: Guitar Exercise – The Goal Towards Perfection a Beginner’s Exercise. 

About the author

Altaf Shaikh

I believe “When you share the knowledge gained from your experiences, you can make the world a better place”. Learning is a never-ending journey, so never stop learning.

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