Acoustic Blues Guitar Goodness - "Little Chords"


Leave A Comment And Tell Me What You Think…


  • john green

    Reply Reply May 31, 2015

    What do I think? Well I think U are one best teachers out there!
    Thank you Griff
    for another great lesson!

    • Pat Cronin

      Reply Reply June 10, 2015

      Griff – I loved this lesson!!! I really need to use inversions more. Sometimes I forget to use them but they make the music sound more interesting!

    • Lego_GE47

      Reply Reply February 8, 2016

      I have a very difficult time with finger picking. I constantly get confused and begin simply strumming.

  • Raymond Lukehart

    Reply Reply May 31, 2015

    Would it be possible to get a chord chart or picture, of the 4 little chords in E,A and B.
    i”m a senior citizen, I completed ,B G U and have been following your awesome journey
    of teaching, but when A person get older, it become harder to memorize some things you
    show, I would be happy to purchase the charts ,if you would be so kind. I’m known as that
    OLD guy that can really get down,(thanks to you).If not possible, no problem ,.but THANKS!!!
    for teaching me how to play guitar. If your in VA. you better believe I’ll be there to thank you and
    shake your hand
    Raymond Lukehart.

    • Roy Bonner

      Reply Reply May 31, 2015

      I’m with you on this one Raymond, I made a fair living playing guitar and bass thirty odd years ago, then had to quit for a few years, now I’m almost into my 70th year and I found BGU, blues was a field I loved to play, but never got too much practice being too busy playing country and rock to make a living. Well now maybe I have the chance, but my fingers have lost their way about the fretboard, and my memory is also less than perfect. Added to the fact that my health isn’t too great, I need these days, about a week to get on top of just 1 emailed lesson. Hopefully when I get back up to speed, I may be able to catch up, but at present it is most disheartening to find lessons coming in faster than I can cope with. TAB for the chords would certainly be a great asset if you could manage it Griff. By the way, if you ever get to bonnie Scotland you best believe I’ll be there to give you the grand tour and the makings of the biggest hangover you ever had!

    • Jeffrey Goblirsch

      Reply Reply February 10, 2016

      You can purchased a cord book at a music store! They have all the inversions for all the keys. Cost about $6, I have worn the cover off mine. Very useful!

    • Ben

      Reply Reply February 10, 2017

      If you did’nt get your chords email me I may be able to help. Also a senior.

    • anon

      Reply Reply July 26, 2021

      There are plenty of chord charts available on-line. However, it would do you a world of good to become familiar with the CAGED system since the little chords are derived from these positions. And, as Griff says, it is vital to learn the notes on the fretboard and then you can find these chords (as dyads , triads, etc.) anywhere on the neck.

    • anon

      Reply Reply August 19, 2022

      As others have said, once you learn the notes of the fretboard (and there are only 7!) and understand that chords are made from the 1,3, and 5 of the scale with the 3 being major or minor accordingly, then you can find these 3 notes anywhere on the fretboard–and thereby make versions of the chord anywhere. Obviously you can can the 7, 9, 13, etc. to the mix.

  • Billy Henderson

    Reply Reply May 31, 2015

    Lots of older folks are learning the guitar, we need all the help we can get. Thanks for teaching to us.

    • Alex

      Reply Reply February 8, 2016

      Griff it would be such a big help.
      Little chords and comping in general is my weakest link and even when I try to follow you it just does not sound the same.
      A chart that would allow us to have a set of three ‘little chords” for blues in the various keys would be so helpful.
      So that we can call up say a blues in E and have the little chords to pcatice there
      Blues in A… same etc etc
      Beginner Course
      BGU course

    • Lego_GE47

      Reply Reply February 8, 2016

      Amen to that! Bill!

  • Michael Acevedo

    Reply Reply June 1, 2015

    You are very good at really teaching the depth of guitar. I wish I would have known about you when I was younger and had money.

  • James. Cosey

    Reply Reply June 1, 2015

    I love. This video 123and4 i really needed that.i thank you very very much.

  • Tom

    Reply Reply June 1, 2015

    Another really thorough lesson.Thank you Griff.
    Could you put together some lessons using the slide?
    My left hand is not working well enough to fret each chord but I can and do use a slide.
    Thank you

  • johnny

    Reply Reply June 1, 2015

    Great lessons , love em.!

  • Kenny

    Reply Reply June 24, 2015

    Thank you,
    I keep all of your lessons.
    However, if while you are playing you could display the tab at the same time I think that would be very beneficial.

  • janet

    Reply Reply February 8, 2016

    Im having trouble reaching the 7 fret iv tryed turn the guitar round dose not stay. I tjink it might be todo with the fact it was brocken some years ago. So im struggling with that last video i am also having trouble down loading the pdf files. Cant open once down loaded so i just have to keep practising what i canbut yes great stuff

  • Paul Warner

    Reply Reply February 8, 2016

    I love a lesson like this because I work on chord inversions every day. I love and play a lot of jazz chords so learning chord inversions is imperative when I am creating my own music. Sometimes I will be doodling around with chords and I will come up with one that sounds so good that I have to stop and figure out what the chord is and why that inversion works with what I am doing. Some months ago I watched somebody do a rendition of “Hopelessly Devoted To You” by Olivia Newton John. It sounded good but I didn’t really like the chords he used. So I spent a week inverting the chords and when it was done I was very proud of how it sounded. I practice this song at least three or four times a week. Chord inversions is one of my favorite things to do on the guitar. Great lesson…..

  • Jack aaron

    Reply Reply February 8, 2016

    Just hit pause and make your own cord chart. I have had a band or played in one for 40 years, wish had these lessons long ago, what a help they would have been. Tks Griff what fun to noodle again without having to play clubs and bars. Jacktheripper. Austin

  • tony dawes

    Reply Reply February 8, 2016

    Hi Griff
    Fascinating, if only you had a course focused only on ‘little chords’ you would have a fan for life as I am trying to learn the tenor guitar tuned DGBE. Any chance?

  • Lego_GE47

    Reply Reply February 8, 2016

    In case anyone its interested, I discovered a channel on XM/Sirius Satellite Radio called “BLUESVILLE” channel 070. They play songs by many of the artists Griff mentions in his videos. Not sure if they play any of Griff’s own music.

  • Darryl

    Reply Reply February 8, 2016

    Thanks for this lesson Griff, like all the others here this latest lesson is something that I find really helpful. I think I will watch it again and try and make up my own little chord sheets after watching the video a couple of times over and over.
    Thanks for these lessons, I too fall into the old guy category and I am trying to keep up with you in the video. This is some what challenging most times. But not get frustrated …love what you are offering in these lessons. Thanks buddy…you are a great teacher and player.

    Looking forward to what you offer next ….cheers.

  • Steve

    Reply Reply February 8, 2016

    Thank you!

  • Willie the elder

    Reply Reply February 8, 2016

    guess i missed something…
    in “E” i thot D was the 7th…
    and so “C#” is the FLATTED 7th …?
    but in this example you show a “D”…
    illuminate me …if you can

    • Jeremy

      Reply Reply February 10, 2016

      Hi Willie, I hope this helps a bit. Im no expert. It can be a bit tricky at first…
      Firstly, in the E major scale, Eb is the seventh note of that major scale. That’s a major seventh. Flatting that seventh note makes it a minor, or flatted seventh. This would then be one semitone lower than Eb – which is the D note.
      So E 7 does have a D note in it.
      Dom 7 chords generally have major thirds and minor sevenths.

      So, E major seven has a major third and a major seven note.
      E minor seven has a minor third and a minor seven note.
      F (Dom) 7 – has a major third and a minor seven note.
      That mix of major and minor makes it great for blues!

      It’s tricky stuff to explain but makes a certain kind of sense when you follow the rules. Keeps Grif up at night too, trying to simplify it all for us.
      If I’m wrong anywhere at all someone will point it out.

      • Alex

        Reply Reply May 24, 2016

        Jeremy, in your example, I think you meant to use E (Dom) 7 to be consistent with the other two examples, correct?

    • Lee

      Reply Reply May 24, 2016

      D# is the correct name for the 7tth scale step in E. Flat it and you get the D which creates a dominant 7th, which in the key of A leads you to the A chord.

      • Lee

        Reply Reply May 24, 2016

        Make that the key of E, sorry!

  • Bernie Curran

    Reply Reply February 8, 2016

    Hey Griff
    What a lovely way to expand the board! These “new” inversions sound so melodic.
    Many thanks. Bernie from Scotland.

  • John England

    Reply Reply February 8, 2016

    Excellent intro to little chords. As an amateur one-time jazz big band guitar player I had to avoid getting in the way of the bass etc and was introduced, in no uncertain terms, to the concept of partial or little chords.

  • Wade Shaw

    Reply Reply February 8, 2016

    From the Tabs, aren’t these 3 sets of 4 movable chords that look different only at the nut? Loved the lesson.. Less daunting for me to think of this way if so, and generalizable to other keys?

  • Jeremy

    Reply Reply February 8, 2016

    Another awesome lesson.
    This would also be a great way to warm up every time I play some blues…
    Thanks for some more of those crown jewels Grif

  • Glynis

    Reply Reply February 8, 2016

    Thank you Griff for an invaluable lesson. You explained it in a clear and concise manner that made it approachable.

  • Big Chief

    Reply Reply February 9, 2016

    Lots of good information presented too quickly . Im in agreement with everyone who wanted chord charts. I think I need more information on inversions. Also you mentioned RJ used these in his playing. I take your word on it. I know this is valuable information. I play a lot of blues. I’ll try to make charts. Ill let you know. Thanks for opening the door.

  • Joseph D

    Reply Reply February 9, 2016

    This rocks HARD! Thanks for the dedicated teachings

  • Jeffrey Goblirsch

    Reply Reply February 10, 2016

    Thanks Griff
    I love the 4 note 7th cords from the top 4 strings! Just wondering what inversions go together, to make the 1,4,5. I like to keep everything close together, so your not moving around. What sounds good together???
    Jeffrey Goblirsch

  • JJ Schmitz

    Reply Reply February 10, 2016

    To the ole dudes playing guitar. I am with ya. A couple of thoughts. Getting lined graph paper with the six strings drawn across the page has been a big help to me. This paper can be found on the internet and printed out or purchased at a music store. Regarding memorization: Drawing the chords out while watching Griff (over and over until I get it right or WRITE PUN\1) is also helpful for memory retention Finally, getting a CAGED video is a great adjunct to the little chords. You simply cannot learn too many chords. Malcomb Young (Angus’ brother of AC/DC is a favorite rjythm player of mine. He is every bit as important to their music as the lead guitarist. He dies not just strum the guitar, He embellishes the song with chords up and down the neck – much in the fashion that Griff is showing us in this video. And to Griff: Thanks for these free gratis lessons I enjoy the lessons I have purchased from you and appreciate the freebees to keep my interests alive in between my periodic purchases.

  • Freddie Milburn

    Reply Reply February 10, 2016

    Really great to follow up with the 7th’s and reference to ‘thump bass’ and Robert Johnson, so beautifully simple …………

  • S-man

    Reply Reply February 10, 2016

    What a great lesson.

  • Earl Girdner

    Reply Reply February 11, 2016

    I really liked this lessons , and also the one you sent last week with the G7 little chords.
    I feel that have Opened up new door for me.
    I feel I’m a slow learner,and this helps ALOT!
    I will have to work with them for a little bit
    But the are great THANK’S Griff !

  • David Fehr

    Reply Reply February 16, 2016

    Great lesson. I was wondering why you left out the A bar chord shape for these 7th chords. If you include that shape these voicings follow the C-A-G-E-D bar shapes. Just another way to put this together.

  • Lonnie6a

    Reply Reply February 16, 2016

    Love using these lil shapes or chords to help in my church playing to enhance some choir members that have an off key voice. It really helps when a young member voice is changing during puberty.

  • Michael Chappell

    Reply Reply February 23, 2016

    Hey Griff,

    I am simply blown away by the Acoustic lessons like this one , I have learn’t a lot about the inversions and will certainly practice them when I get to this part in my own Road Map of BGU Courses..
    I am still going through BGU V 2, and the Pentatonic Scales & Technique Mastery and practicing all Keys across the 5 Boxes as well as the Blues Scale. I am also learning all your email video lessons that I get that are well within reach of what I am practicing..Learning how to build the Licks into phrases and solos. These great lessons are saved as part of my Road Map when It get to the various stages.
    Great Lesson.

  • Dave McKenna

    Reply Reply February 25, 2016

    This lesson was another in a long line of epiphanies for me. As I watched it for the second time It started to make more sense. I noticed that the shapes repeated themselves for the different inversions and positions on the neck. For me this was an epiphany maybe not so much for some more experienced players . Thanks Griff for another great lesson !

  • Walter L.Brewer

    Reply Reply May 25, 2016

    Griff, very interesting WLB.

  • BB

    Reply Reply August 7, 2016

    Hi Griff. Today I learnt some thing new to me . I am happy with this video .
    I must admit I have become your admirer and A fan of yours teaching . .So simply you explain that new to pupil understands and can follow your instructions .Just Great .

  • tony

    Reply Reply August 7, 2016

    I would like to say I learned something here and would like to say that theres 16 examples of each cord . Thats in a book of cords I have . the A7 cord coulb have been lower for thoes who do not have a cut away acoustic guitar. The B7 well you can not go any lower . The E7 no problem there . I would like to know why You choose thoes cords when there are alot of options?

  • Happy mutedzi

    Reply Reply December 22, 2016

    Thankx very much for this it was great,sometimes I abandon my guitar too long, any iam alive again

  • 98Reece

    Reply Reply December 28, 2016

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  • Mr Griffin

    Reply Reply February 10, 2017

    Griff is the best in the business !

  • Mr Griffin

    Reply Reply February 10, 2017

    Griff is a fantastic guitar teacher !

  • Rustie

    Reply Reply June 28, 2017

    Utterly confusing. These are the kind of lessons that put me off playing. Too much information and, I feel sure, too much unnecessary theory. I doubt if I’m ever going to meet anyone who asks me to play a second inversion chord, all we need is the name of the chord surely? This is all too clever by half for people who really just want to play blues without studying for a Masters in Music. ‘Open third inversion’….you’re not serious are you Griff? Cool this is not.

    • Griff

      Reply Reply July 3, 2017

      I understand you might feel overwhelmed by the theory, but it’s not at all necessary to play the chords and use them. If it’s not your thing, it’s no sweat. Some people like to understand the “why” behind the chords, but if you don’t, you can still play the chords and use them.

  • Sean McHugh

    Reply Reply November 25, 2017

    Hi Griff,

    Thanks. Very handy lesson. I learned the notes vertically along a fret (1, 4, b7, b3, 5, 1) but thinking 1 5 1 3 5 1 around a chord is definitely easier and quicker.

    Love the jazz thing you do at the beginning of the video. Could you do a video with examples of that sort of noodling?

  • Rustie

    Reply Reply March 26, 2018

    Sadly, this is the kind of lesson that can put any budding guitarist off. In my humble opinion this mass of theory (“second inversion, fifth in the bass, not a second inversion chord, third inversion flattened 7th, subsets, open third inversion, versions of inversions” etc etc ad infinitum ad nauseum) simply muddies the water unnecessarily. Why not just teach the chords, their names – and how to finger them. What a turn-off…….really.

  • Charlie Durham

    Reply Reply May 20, 2018

    Great video! Little long on theory, but that’s cool I love to know how things work. Thanks for all the time and effort you put into these lessons. From AZ.

  • JohnnyB

    Reply Reply May 20, 2018

    Really good, loved it. You really need a video on lots of small chords, or partials. I use these a lot and more is always better.

  • RodW

    Reply Reply May 23, 2018

    This lesson has got me making a determined effort to master it. First I slowly mastered the finger positions. Now I am slowly going up and down the FB playing E7 etc. I cant wait to try doing it to a slow beat but am not quite ready for that yet.

    It’s clear that this is a very useful and valuable lesson. Thanks Griff for investing so much time and effort into your lessons.

  • mike molloyl

    Reply Reply September 22, 2018

    dear Griff love your teachings……..the fact you give us free nuggets is really appreciated……l hope someday to purchase some of your advanced lessons

  • Karol

    Reply Reply December 27, 2018

    Thank You Griff You my the best teacher. Karol from Poland

  • Christopher Davis

    Reply Reply March 13, 2019


    Thank you so much for the great lessons!! I have been practicing “hybrid” picking now for a couple of years due to a complete admiration of Johnny Hiland.. I really love these courses and just wanted to say …Hey it is greatly appreciated!!!
    Practicing a lot more now with your lessons!!
    Peace Brother,
    Christopher from Costa Rica.

  • Terry Witzu

    Reply Reply April 12, 2019

    Man, catching up around rushing to my moving schedule. Had to wait until I could actually be attentive. Thank you so much for the terrific lesson.

    I didn’t know Robert Johnson tuned to standard.

  • Mark Matthews

    Reply Reply July 21, 2019

    I like it

  • Ligaya

    Reply Reply August 30, 2019

    Griff I love it,thank your way of teaching really make sense to me , I understand each lesson you give, my blues guitar mentor take care of yourself always.

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    • Rob G.

      Reply Reply January 5, 2020

      Another great lesson Griff thanks.

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    Reply Reply June 3, 2020

    What’s the model number of your Taylor?

  • D'nesh

    Reply Reply June 22, 2020

    I greatly appreciate your presentations. I don’t think I’ve ever met a player who is so willing to discuss The Blues in universal music terminology as you do, and break it all down.. I’ll be truthful… I haven’t even actually been practicing these lessons (yet), but just based on what I’ve absorbed watching your videos my playing has improved a little.

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    Reply Reply August 28, 2020

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  • david Crall

    Reply Reply October 20, 2020

    As a uke player, I only have these little cords. Only the cord names are changed to protect the innocent.

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  • Murph

    Reply Reply January 24, 2021

    This was exactly the lesson I was looking for and thank you for doing an excellent job covering all the blues notes (E, A, B). Outstanding support for the guitar journeyman!

  • jimmie F

    Reply Reply May 28, 2021

    Totally dig what you’re doing. A new very fly world has been opened. Thanks!

  • Dwight

    Reply Reply June 26, 2021

    You have a fantastic instructional technique. The lessons are easy to understand and enjoyable to play with, unfortunately my mistake was not joining sooner as I missed the first 6 lessons..

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  • Bill

    Reply Reply May 6, 2022

    Wow! Griff, this lesson is outstanding. I have been playing guitar since 1964, I am very familiar with these chord shapes; however, this lesson has opened my eyes to the mechanics of inversions that I knew existed but never previously understood. Thanks dearly for this lesson!

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