Jimi Hendrix Chords

Posted by: Daniel R. Lehrman Posted in: Guitar Chords

Jimi Hendrix ChordsClick this link or the picture to enlarge and copy. Many folks are mystified at what chords were used and how Jimi Hendrix used them in order to create some of the extraordinary sounds unheard of now and at the time.

Note: The chart was handwritten years ago. I hope you can understand them. Structurally speaking, Jimi did not invent these chords. If one understands chord structure, than any chord can be formed anywhere on the neck using basic chord making rules. Jimi had no formal instruction, there fore if it sounded good he played it.

As mentioned, this is a really old chart made up years ago for reference purposes. Very advanced and takes lots of practice. These chords are not for beginners, simply put, to master these chords, one should probably become a master of the essential guitar chords and scales stage 0ne(1), and essential chords and scales stage two(2). Realistically speaking, one must know all of the guitar chords listed in the chords category first. Basically if you play a guitar for beginners, then you are not ready for this.

One recommendation would be to learn all of the essential chords first, until they become instinctual. However, I don’t see any harm in learning the Jimi Hendrix chords and practicing them for literally years while you learn the essential chords. Basically it is a matter of muscle memory. For obvious reasons, the more difficult the chord, the more time it takes to become instinctual. By the time you learn these particular chords, you should have developed some ‘chops’ by then.

I bet a lot of veteran players know these chords. Every one of them will agree that it takes a while for your fingers to even be able to manipulate these chord positions. By the way they are chromatic, which means in part that they are move able, essentially making them playable any where you want on the neck. The R stands for the root note of the chord.

We are all in the guitar vibe for the long run, and by the time you master these chords, they will start to sound like what you expect them to sound like. Sometimes when you don’t have the chops, a chord or phrase does not sound the way it does on the record. Mostly this is due to not being advanced enough to play the rhythm properly and time your hammer ons and hammer offs correctly. Using a logical and effective method to practice your guitar will put you on the right path.

Other than the unusual way Hendrix manipulated seemingly ordinary essential scales in his unique and quirky way, he was a master at harmonically and melodically integrating these chords, so the sound had a memorable impact on you. Leaving you wanting for more. Tension and release.

As I mentioned before, Jimi did not invent the chords presented here. He made use of them in a manner that made a lot of guitarists follow his lead(no pun here). Stevie Ray Vaughan also had a vibe for these chords. In fact Jimi and SRV were the only guys I know of, at least at the time, who could play lead guitar with chords only! Wow!

Take your time and learn them, don’t become frustrated. They will become handy someday. Guitar Players Center will continue to share the unusual Hendrix vibes and some of the quirky stuff he did that separated him from everyone else. Are you thinking out of the box? Can you add anything to this article? Please do. Share it with your friends and most important, enjoy.

24 Responses to Jimi Hendrix Chords

  1. Pzychotropic

    I hope I don’t have to become left-handed to learn these chords 😉
    Tho’ that my be the kind of challenge to rekindle the learning fire! – Any ambidextrus guitarists out there? 🙂

  2. Just mirror them for your right hand. They’re not left handed chords, they’re just chords.

  3. This was an essential article. Thanks Danny for this beautifully written installment. BTW I hear you are a really good guitar teacher.

  4. Pzychotropic

    @chris Hee hee1 I was only kidding 🙂

  5. I agree…essential article. i always wondered how Jimi could document what he played….

  6. Pzychotropic dude bro, there is an ambidextereoius player out there. It is Andy Aledort of Andy Aledort.com What a great player and teacher, he can play both ways. He demonstrates it on the Albert King teaching DVD. Plays a guitar turned over and NOT restrung. Great idea for an article.

  7. Chris, those are Left handed chords LOL. Hum! We need a book of left handed chords. You make me laugh. Sign up for my blog bro. lots more weirdo info like that.

  8. Sara dear, Your usage of the language is impeckable, I spelled impeccable wrong. thanks for your thots.

  9. Adina, You are a regular reader and I appreciate that. Anytime you want to come over, I will be very patient and teach you anything you want. That goes for anyone out there. If nothing else you will enjoy Florida and than we can jam.

  10. thanks, that sheet is a useful tool. stumble upon thumbs up!

  11. Pzychotropic

    I’ve tried a few of these chords out – he sure made use of his thumb – which is handy, as I do to. A lot of fairly standard jazz chords in there as well. Interesting stuff 🙂

  12. Nascar, your welcomed. I hope you join my free blog. Lots more useful stuff for you. I appreciate the comment

  13. Pzychotropic, I spent a lot of years making my thumb useful. Standard Jazz chords yes. Thumbs are really handy if you want to copy Jimi’s style too. Some of the stuff he could do with his hands seems like they are not humanly possible.

  14. Oh, good choice! I especially like the chords in Angel.

  15. Many new guitar players are intimidated by the thought of learning guitar scales. While there certainly is a bit of a learning curve, learning guitar scales doesn’t have to be difficult. We are going to look at some of the easier ways to learn guitar scales.

  16. Pingback: learn guitar chords for beginners | LEARN GUITAR

  17. Vampire Hire

    Great info, what a pity the chart is a little lame ? Truly worth doing another version to coincide with your hand info ……not to worry ! ……regards

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