So many lessons focus on the Major chords. The minor chords can be fun and are important too. So many great and fun songs use the Minor chords today. The E and D Minor chords are fun and easy to start with, and have a lot to offer any guitarist musically. With some practice you will be able to add these two chords to the ones you have already mastered and broaden your musical horizons.




Let’s start with the easiest chord first, the E Minor chord. This chord uses the triad notes of E, G, and B. The Major chord that corresponds with E Minor is G.


You can see that playing E Minor only involves using 2 fingers on the fretting hand.

  • Place your second finger on the 2nd fret of the 5th string
  • and your 3rd finger on the 2nd fret of the 4th string.
  • Now you can strum all 6 strings and there you have it, the E Minor chord!

Make sure that you are playing the chord correctly by picking each string starting with the 6th string. This will let you know that all the notes are ringing clearly for a perfect sound. If a note sounds off adjust your fingers and try again.




Once you have mastered the E Minor chord, we can move on to the D Minor chord. The triad used for D Minor is the D, F, and A notes. The Major chord that corresponds with D Minor is F.

This chord is not played as much as many of the others, so extra practice to commit it to memory for when you need it is important.


  • Place your 1st finger on the 1st fret of the 1st string.
  • Your 2nd finger should be placed on the 2nd fret of the 3rd string
  • and your 3rd finger on the 3rd fret of the 2nd string.
  • With this chord you only strum the bottom 4 strings.

Make sure each note sounds right and clear. You will know if you are hitting the upper 2 strings because the sound will not be good. Hitting just the 4 bottom strings may take some practice. It is a natural reaction to want to hit them all.



Once you have practiced and memorized where to place your fingers it is best to practice some basic strumming in these chords. This will allow you to have better control on changing your fret hand and strumming well at the same time. Make sure that the first thing you do before starting is to tune your guitar. Just the actions of practicing chords can knock a tuned guitar off. Either use a pick you are comfortable with one, or a finger pick if that is better for you.

Practice playing the following exercise:


  • You are going to alternate between strumming down then up.
  • When you are done playing the entire example once, you will loop it around without a pause.
  • Count out loud and tap your foot to One and Two and Three and Four, then repeat.
  • You will strumming down on with the numbers (beats) and up on the “and” (off beats).
  • First try this exercise in the E minor for 15 minutes and then try it in the D Minor for 15 more minutes.

When playing the above pattern you will want to keep a few tips in mind.

  • If you are using an acoustic guitar, make sure to strum right over the sound hole.
  • If you are using an electric guitar make sure to strum over the guitar body and not on the neck.
  • Each part of the body will make a different sound so be sure to find the perfect place to match the tone you are looking for.
  • All of the strings should ring clearly. If they do not the re-adjust your fingers till they sound clear.
  • The volume of the down and up strums should be equal.
  • Stay relaxed while strumming so that the strings do not rattle by strumming too hard. This rattle can produce a sound that you do not want.
  • Just as much as hard strumming can make the sound bad, too weak strumming can too. If you strum too softly then it will produce a weak, almost sick, sound.
  • Lastly, keep your wrist flexible. Most of the picking motion comes from the wrist.


Make sure to practice strumming using a metronome. This will help you stay in time, keep things even, and smooth. A metronome is your best friend and can help you naturally keep your rhythm with out having to count out load.

















Once you have become really comfortable with the rhythm then you can move on to some songs that utilize the E and D minor chords and practice those. Make sure you feel comfortable with what you have done before moving on to anything harder. There is a reason they say, “practice makes perfect!”