Express Guitar - The Ultimate Guitar Learning Kit

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      Play Guitar By Ear - Finding the 'One'                                   Chord


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  The first important step in learning to play guitar by ear was to
  introduce the eight bar song form. Now, it's time to develop a
  system for identifying common harmonic patterns used by
  successful songwriters.

  Musical content:

  The key skills to learning to play by ear is the ability to
  understand musical 'form' and 'content'.

  Remember, all musicians who play by ear have learnt to do this,
  they just don't know how to explain the process!

  Finding the 'one' chord:

  Our next step in learning to play guitar by ear will be to learn
  how to play 'two chord songs'.

  As we have discovered the eight bar song format is a great place
  to start as our basic musical template, we will now need to learn
  the underlying mathematical codes for creating successful,
  logical chord progressions.

  Professional musicians use a numbering system to identify chord
  progressions that makes it easy for them to learn songs quickly and         change keys effortlessly.

  It's extremely simple, and as we all know ... simple works!

  Here's how it works:

  The first chord we need to be able to find by ear is the 'one'
  chord, this is the 'key' chord. When a performer says "let's do
  'XYZ' song in the key of G" the one chord for that song would be

  Chord 'one' reference chart:

  Key of C ...    1 chord = C

  Key of C# ...  1 chord = C#

  Key of Db ...  1 chord = Db

  Key of D ...   1 chord = D

  Key of D# ... 1 chord = D#

  Key of Eb ... 1 chord = Eb

  Key of E ...  1 chord = E

  Key of F ...  1 chord = F

  Key of F# ...1 chord = F#

  Key of Gb ...1 chord = Gb

  Key of G ...  1 chord = G

  Key of G# ...1 chord = G#

  Key of Ab ...1 chord = Ab

  Key of A ... 1 chord = A

  Key of A# ...1 chord = A#

  Key of Bb ...1 chord = Bb

  Key of B ...  1 chord = B

  In 98% of two chord songs the very first chord is a the 'one'
  chord, as you can see we are off to a great start.

  More good news ... 100% of two chord songs finish on the 'one'

  That means if we were trying to play a two chord song by ear we
  would have a good idea what the first and last chords were!

  Here is an example of a two chord song in the key of 'D'.

             ?      ?      ?
  | //// | //// | //// | //// |

     ?       ?      ?       D
  | //// | //// | //// | //// |

  As you can see, we're not sure what all the chords are, however
  we do know the first and last chords.

  I'll include one more example in the key of 'A'.

             ?      ?      ?
  | //// | //// | //// | //// |

      ?      ?      ?       A
  | //// | //// | //// | //// |

  Each baby step forward in learning to play guitar by ear will
  build confidence in our ability to work out other songs by
  ourselves, eventually there's no limit to how many songs you can
  learn and remember.


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Rave Reviews for Express Guitar:


As a student of Mike Hayes since 1999, I have found his teaching methods and products to be first class. Whatever style or area of music I have been interested in, he has provided me with useful information, advice and study materials. His style of teaching and teaching products enabled me to progress through his guitar course far quicker than I ever imagined. He also helps in teaching yourself to find and develop your own style of music. Mike’s teaching gives his student’s the ability to become useful musicians, not just guitarists.

Stephen J Reid
Guitarist & Musician



This course teaches us how to learn, how to retain, and how to recall information quickly. This entire program is built around "connected learning" with key phrases, picture words ( yes there is such a thing ) and the most dynamic personal motivator I have ever had the pleasure of knowing.

Ken C Simpson
Business Owner & Guitarist
Queensland, Australia



The course is varied, in-depth and well-structured, making learning and comprehension fast, thorough and enjoyable. It’s a great way of learning, as you can pace yourself and move onto the next stage when you feel competent. I find this course both innovative and inspirational. I find myself leaving Mike’s lessons with the determination to reach my new goals.

Karl J Ricker
Sales Manager
Sunshine Coast, Australia