A Beginners Guide To Play C Minor Chord on Guitar

The C chord can be normally found on sad songs. As this chord is usually played on rock, classical and country songs on a classical guitar. For this reason, for this chord is one of the most popular chords.

In this read, we will discuss two ways to play this chord.

When played, the chord of Cm (or C minor) embodies an expressive softness. It can give rise to sober passion, longing, or solemnity. The chord’s soft and mellow nature makes it suitable for unrequited love ballads or songs that have a downtrodden feeling.

Notes Used to Make Cm Chord

To give it that soft and earnest sound, there are three flat notes that make up the C minor chord.

C, Eb and G

The chord roots are the three notes above. Eb major is its relative major and C is its parallel major.

How to Play the Cm Chord

Due to its awkward chord shape, this is one of the more difficult notes to play. Cm is typically played as a bar chord in its standard form.

You should start by placing your index finger on the 3rd fret to play Cm in its standard form, covering your high E, B, G, D and A but barring the A (fifth string) and high e (first string).

Place Your Index Finger on: 3rd fret of the A (5th) and E (1st) string

Place Your Middle Finger on: 4th fret of the B (2nd) string

Place Your Ring Finger on: 5th fret of the D (4th) string  

Place Your Pinky Finger on: 5th fret of the G (3rd) string

Now, all you need to do is to strum these five strings down the A string.

how to play cm chord

As you can see, for beginner guitar players, the Cm does not offer the friendliest finger placement. That’s why many guitarists choose to play the easier alternative C minor chord over the standard barred version

This is how you play the c minor:

Place Your Index Finger on: 3rd fret of E (1st) string.

Place Your Middle Finger on: 4th fret of the B (2nd) string.

Place Your Ring Finger on: 5th fret of the G (3rd) string.

Now, all you need to do is to strum these three strings down the G string – Easier, right?

how to play cminor

Songs That Are Best for Cm Chords

Beethoven, one of the greatest pianist gifted by nature, wrote his famous gloomy symphony with the C minor key. This alone should tell you what kind of songs are best for this chord.

Normally, as stated before, C chord is used to bring out emotions; best for sad songs in my opinion.

Rock Music - The Main Candidate

If you want to open up the Cm chord’s passion – even some of its pent-up aggressiveness – then Survivor’s “Eye of the Tiger” is a classic example of Cm with a motivating beat. Speaking of classic rock, the “You Give Love a Bad Name” by Bon Jovi is another great example of Cm’s breadth and the punch it can give a song. The chord is used to the fullest effect in these 80s anthems with great guitar chops and driving drums.

Sometimes a note’s personality strikes a chord with a band’s tone and personality. The Cm chord is an integral part of their discography for metal and hard rockers. 

Blues Music - Sad Songs

The blues and a dark, oppressed feel go hand-in-fretboard, which is why in some well-known songs within the genre the Cm chord so often appears.

Listen to the Cm chord in Led Zeppelin’s legendary blues-influenced “Since I’ve been Loving You”.

Folk Music - Your Grandpa Would Love It

Cm is a perfect chord for acoustic modern folk songs with its exposed sincerity, making it a go-to chord for Ben Howard, especially songs such as “The Wolves” and “She Treats Me Well.”

Punk Rock - For Your Emo Phase

While the Red Hot Chili Peppers are best known for their funk rock anthems, sometimes they have been known to slow it down. Stadium Arcadium’s tracks “Hey” and “Death of a Martian” are dreamy funk-like takes built around the Cm chord, powered by some scintillating Frusciante guitarwork and easy-going Flea bass groove.

Ending Note

The C note is great. Personally, it is my favorite as I love rock music. This note is perfect for teaching your child as well. If you bought your kid a guitar, then I recommend you teaching this to time. 

Its dark without chords