easy guitar songs

GUITAR GUIDES

Top 50 Easy Guitar Songs for Beginners

Everybody starts somewhere.

That’s the first bit of advice I always give to new guitar players when they’re feeling discouraged or overwhelmed.

Let’s face it: You will be terrible in the beginning. You will make mistakes. That’s just a part of the process.

Taking your first steps with guitar isn’t easy… and it definitely doesn’t come overnight. Don’t let anyone ever tell you there’s a “shortcut”, or that they learned overnight.

What they aren’t showing you is the hours and hours of practice they had when nobody was watching.

That’s the key to becoming a great guitarist: practice, practice, practice - even when nobody’s watching. The greatest musicians, even traveling guitarists, practice for intense periods of time behind closed doors. 

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Here's how we came up with this list

What makes a song “easy”? What separates a regular guitar song from one of the ones on our list down below?

Great question!

In my eyes, a good beginner song has the following traits:

1. It contains a minimal number of chords. A beginner can practice 2-3 chords and then have the ability to play the entire song! Pretty cool, right?

2. The chords are easy to find on the fret board for a beginner. Here’s what I mean. When you’re first starting out you’re still developing calluses and getting comfortable with picking out chords. Some chords are harder to get to than others, and just take more practice to master. The songs we chose below all have chords that are simple for you to get. We did sprinkle in some more difficult chords in there, but we also marked those songs so you’d know that the chords might be harder to pick up on your fret board. 

And that’s it. Just two simple criteria.

But don’t underestimate the simplicity here…

With these two criteria, you’ll start playing in literally no time at all. With a couple hours of practice, you should be able to start picking up your first chords and transitioning your fingering between them faster and faster. Pretty soon you'll find yourself getting more advanced, maybe even picking up a reverb pedal or two!

Just remember, it takes practice. It’s not easy. You just have to keep playing one song over and over again until you get it. Don't worry about picking up any more advanced pedals quite yet -- focus on practicing without mistakes.

Keep transitioning between 2-3 chords until you can easily do it without having to shuffle your fingers around.

And when you can finally switch between chords in about a second or so, that’s when you know you’re doing pretty good. 

How to use a capo

What does "C1" or "C2" mean in the songs below?

A guitar capo (pronounced ‘kay-poh’) is a clamping device that pushes down on all of your guitar’s strings at once. 

Capo Clamped on Guitar

Capo clamped onto a guitar

This shortens the strings, causing your guitar to change keys. In music theory, a key is essentially a collection of notes, or a ‘scale’, that forms a piece of music. We won’t dive too deep into what keys are here - this is something for a lesson on music theory.

But the basic gist of it is, for each fret that you raise your capo, the pitch of each string on your guitar goes up by half a step. So a C becomes a C#, B becomes C, etc. Half step increments.

Another thing to note is that you can’t play any strings below the capo (it won’t really make any sound).

And as a general warning, sometimes when you take your capo on and off, the tension can cause your guitar to go out of tune. Be sure to check the tuning of your guitar if you find yourself taking the capo on and off multiple times.

Now that you know what a capo is, here’s what “Capo 1” or “Capo 2” stand for:

Capo 1 (C1) means that you attach your capo to the first fret on your guitar. Capo 2 (C2) means you attach it to the second fret. See the two images below for more details.

How to read a guitar chord chart

You see this guitar chord chart and have absolutely no idea what to do.

You have no clue in the slightest about what these little X's, O's, and Numbers mean - what do you do?

Well, there's good news. Understanding these chord charts isn't difficult, but it is a little tricky if you've never seen one of these before. 

d minor chord

Here's how you read a Guitar Chord Chart:

We're going to be looking at the A Major Chord below: 

a major chord

The number 1 on the left side of the chart indicates the first fret.

This means that this chord chart starts on the first fret (see the illustration a little further down - look at the blue labels). 

The black circles with the numbers 2, 3, and 4, are where you place your fingers to press down on the guitar's strings.

     Finger 1 is your index finger.
     Finger 2 is your middle finger.
     Finger 3 is your ring finger. 
     Finger 4 is your pinkie

Look at the red text on the illustration below for a visual.

The X means that you DO NOT play that string.

When strumming or picking this chord, leave the string with the X alone.

Look at the image below: The string with the X is the PURPLE string, meaning that you don't play it. Just leave it alone when strumming the A Major chord.

The O means that you PLAY the string OPEN.

This means that you strum or pick any string with an O, you don't have any of your fingers pressing down on the string

Look at the image below: The first string with the O is right below the PURPLE string. You will pick or strum this string, but it'll be completely open when you do.

The second string with the O is the GREEN string. Once again, you will pick or strum this string, but not have any of your fingers pressing down on it. It'll be completely open.

Easy Guitar Songs A Major Chord - Guide Graphic (MightyExpert)

You might also encounter what's called a "barre" or "bar" chord, such as B Major.

Look at the image below: the line connecting the two 1's is the bar.

Also notice that the fret number to the left of the chord chart is labeled 2. This means that the chord chart starts from the SECOND fret.

b major chord

The bar chord in the image above means that you take Finger 1 (your index finger) and push down ALL FIVE STRINGS in-between the First 1 and the Second 1 connected with the bar line. 

When you play the chord, notice how the bar is on the second fret, with Finger 1 (Index). 

Also notice how fingers 2, 3, and 4 are on the fourth fret, pressing down the D, G, and B strings.  

And that's all there is to it! Get out there and make some music!

How to get started

So without further ado, I wanted to present our list of beginner songs below (scroll down for the list).

These are all easy songs to play on guitar, and the ones that are a little more difficult are marked. I recommend choosing one of the easier ones to start, since the chords will be easier to pick up.

Scroll through and find a song you enjoy. It’s important you only pick one song to start off with.

Once you’ve chosen a song, you’ll want to look up the chords on a guitar chord chart and get your fingers in position.

Practice switching between chords until you can do it with your eyes closed! 

Perfect practice makes perfect

I’ll say it again - practice is key. And how you practice is extremely important.

Start slow. Try your best not to make mistakes when practicing. You’ll speed up over time. What you should be focusing on right now is accuracy.

If you want to pull up a YouTube video that helps you keep your rhythm and play along, do it.

Whenever I was learning new songs, I would always just play the part I wanted to get down on repeat. This means I usually played one section of a song over 100+ times. And after about 30 minutes to an hour (depending on complexity), I’d be able to play that part along with the music.

This takes practice of course, but that’s your goal.

So what are you waiting for? Let’s get going, and let’s get playing! Good luck!

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Want to take these songs with you, on the go?

I can send you a PDF copy that transfers over to your smartphone, tablet, laptop, or any other media you carry around with you. Just click on the button below and let me know where to send it (takes a few seconds):

Top 50 Easy Guitar Songs: The List

1. Chasing Cars by Snow Patrol

Difficulty: Beginner

a major chord

A Major Chord

d major chord

D Major Chord

e major chord

E Major Chord

2. Achy Breaky Heart by Billy Ray Cyrus

Difficulty: Beginner

c major chord

C Major Chord

g major chord

G Major Chord

3. 505 by the Arctic Monkeys

Difficulty: Beginner

d minor chord

D Minor Chord

e minor chord

E Minor Chord

4. Boys Around Here by Blake Shelton

Difficulty: Beginner

a major chord

A Major Chord

d major chord

D Major Chord

5. Just the Way You Are by Bruno Mars

Difficulty: Experienced Beginner

A Sharp and B Flat Chord

A# (Bb) Major Chord

d minor chord

D Minor Chord

f major chord

F Major Chord

6. When You Say Nothing At All by Alison Krauss

Difficulty: Intermediate Beginner
Capo: C1

a major chord

A Major Chord

d major chord

D Major Chord

g major chord

G Major Chord

7. Blurred Lines by Robin Thicke

Difficulty: Beginner

d major chord

D Major Chord

g major chord

G Major Chord

8. Eleanor Rigby by The Beatles

Difficulty: Beginner

c major chord

C Major Chord

e minor chord

E Minor Chord

9. Born in the USA by Bruce Springsteen

Difficulty: Experienced Beginner

b major chord

B Major Chord

e major chord

E Major Chord

10. Fallin by Alicia Keys

Difficulty: Beginner
Capo: C2

d minor chord

D Minor Chord

11. Three Little Birds by Bob Marley

Difficulty: Intermediate Beginner

a major chord

A Major Chord

d major chord

D Major Chord

e major chord

E Major Chord

12. Paperback Writer by The Beatles

Difficulty: Beginner

c major chord

C Major Chord

g major chord

G Major Chord

13. High and Dry by Radiohead

Difficulty: Beginner
Capo: C2

d major chord

D Major Chord

e minor chord

E Minor Chord

g major chord

G Major Chord

14. Give Peace a Chance by John Lennon

Difficulty: Beginner
Capo: C1

c major chord

C Major Chord

g major chord

G Major Chord

15. Jambalaya by Hank Williams

Difficulty: Beginner

c major chord

C Major Chord

g major chord

G Major Chord

16. I Have a Dream by Abba

Difficulty: Intermediate Beginner
Capo: C1

a major chord

A Major Chord

d major chord

D Major Chord

e major chord

E Major Chord

17. Marry You by Bruno Mars

Difficulty: Beginner
Capo: C3

d major chord

D Major Chord

e minor chord

E Minor Chord

g major chord

G Major Chord

18. She Will be Loved by Maroon 5

Difficulty: Intermediate Beginner
Capo: C3

c major chord

C Major Chord

g major chord

G Major Chord

19. Lively Up Yourself by Bob Marley

Difficulty: Beginner

d major chord

D Major Chord

g major chord

G Major Chord

20. Royals by Lorde

Difficulty: Intermediate Beginner

c major chord

C Major Chord

d major chord

D Major Chord

g major chord

G Major Chord

21. I'd Rather Go Blind by Etta James

Difficulty: Beginner
Capo: C2

a minor chord

A Minor Chord

g major chord

G Major Chord

22. Break On Through by The Doors

Difficulty: Experienced Beginner

d major chord

D Major Chord

e minor chord

E Minor Chord

23. Songbird by Oasis

Difficulty: Beginner

e minor chord

E Minor Chord

g major chord

G Major Chord

24. Molly's Lips by Nirvana

Difficulty: Beginner

c major chord

C Major Chord

g major chord

G Major Chord

25. What I Got by Sublime

Difficulty: Beginner

d major chord

D Major Chord

g major chord

G Major Chord

26. Closer by Ne-Yo

Difficulty: Intermediate Beginner

c major chord

C Major Chord

e minor chord

E Minor Chord

27. Tulsa Time by Eric Clapton

Difficulty: Beginner

d major chord

D Major Chord

g major chord

G Major Chord

28. Lady in Black by Uriah Heep

Difficulty: Beginner

a minor chord

A Minor Chord

g major chord

G Major Chord

29. Something in the Way by Nirvana

Difficulty: Beginner

d major chord

D Major Chord

F Sharp Minor and G Flat Chord

F# Minor (Gb) Chord

30. Feeling Alright by Joe Cocker

Difficulty: Experienced Beginner

c major chord

C Major Chord

f major chord

F Major Chord

31. When Love Comes to Town by U2

Difficulty: Beginner

a major chord

A Major Chord

e major chord

E Major Chord

32. Solitude by Black Sabbath

Difficulty: Experienced Beginner

f major chord

F Major Chord

g minor chord

G Minor Chord

33. Love is a Stranger by Eurythmics

Difficulty: Beginner

c major chord

C Major Chord

f major chord

F Major Chord

34. Tonight's the Night by Neil Young

Difficulty: Experienced Beginner

b major chord

B Major Chord

e major chord

E Major Chord

35. I Only Want You by Eagles of Death Metal

Difficulty: Beginner

a minor chord

A Minor Chord

c major chord

C Major Chord

36. Family Affair by Mary J. Blige

Difficulty: Beginner
Capo: C4

a minor chord

A Minor Chord

e minor chord

E Minor Chord

37. The Cross by Prince

Difficulty: Beginner

a major chord

A Major Chord

e major chord

E Major Chord

38. Fire on the Mountain by Grateful Dead

Difficulty: Experienced Beginner

a major chord

A Major Chord

b major chord

B Major Chord

39. Unknown Legend by Neil Young

Difficulty: Beginner

c major chord

C Major Chord

g major chord

G Major Chord

40. Everyday People by Sly and the Family Stone

Difficulty: Beginner

c major chord

C Major Chord

g major chord

G Major Chord

41. Jane Says by Jane's Addiction

Difficulty: Beginner

a major chord

A Major Chord

g major chord

G Major Chord

42. Sweet Home Alabama by Lynyrd Skynyrd

Difficulty: Beginner

c major chord

C Major Chord

d major chord

D Major Chord

g major chord

G Major Chord

43. Tomorrow Never Knows by The Beatles

Difficulty: Beginner

A Sharp and B Flat Chord

A# (Bb) Major Chord

c major chord

C Major Chord

44. Judas by Dover

Difficulty: Beginner

a minor chord

A Minor Chord

g major chord

G Major Chord

45. Life During Wartime by Talking Heads

Difficulty: Beginner

a minor chord

A Minor Chord

e major chord

E Major Chord

46. One World - Not Three by The Police

Difficulty: Experienced Beginner

f major chord

F Major Chord

g major chord

G Major Chord

47. Let It Be Me by Social Distortion

Difficulty: Beginner

C# Major and D Flat Major Chord

C# (Db) Major Chord

e major chord

E Major Chord

48. Snowstorm by Galaxie 500

Difficulty: Beginner

d major chord

D Major Chord

g major chord

G Major Chord

49. I Gotta Feelin by The Black Eyed Peas

Difficulty: Beginner

c major chord

C Major Chord

e minor chord

E Minor Chord

g major chord

G Major Chord

50. All the Small Things by Blink 182

Difficulty: Very Experienced Beginner

c major chord

C Major Chord

f major chord

F Major Chord

g major chord

G Major Chord

best reverb pedal guitar

Want to take these songs with you, on the go?

I can send you a PDF copy that transfers over to your smartphone, tablet, laptop, or any other media you carry around with you. Just click on the button below and let me know where to send it (takes a few seconds):

50 Easy Guitar Songs PDF Download | Sign up for instant access.