How to build G7 chords on guitar

By | April 7, 2021


Start with your chromatic scale. The chromatic scale of a key is the seven notes that make up the large scale. For G, it’s GABCDEF # -G.

Choose your notes for the ‘recipe’ that makes up G7. For a G chord, you would include the first, third, and fifth scale notes, G, B, and D. For G7, add a flat seventh; the seventh scale note is F #, a plate 7 is an F.

Start with your ring finger on the third row of the guitar’s lowest string, the low E string. This is your first scale note, G.

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Place your middle finger on the second row of the A-string (second string from the bottom, one string over E). This is your B note, your third scale listing.


Leave the two strings open. The D-string is the third string from the bottom and D is the fifth Shell note. The G string, the next string from D, represents a repetition of the first scale note, G.


Put your index finger on the high E-string first. This is your record seventh F. This note makes the G7 chord sound.

Tips and warnings

  • To hear how the seventh chord sounds, play G major and G7 back to the back. You will hear how flatting the seventh gives you the sound that is good for a transition word in a large chord progression.
  • If you are just starting out on guitar, you will benefit from chord building. This activity helps you figure out what goes into a chord. For a seventh chord, it’s a little more complicated than for your more familiar larger and smaller chords. For G7, we are renovating a G-corn in a seventh chord by simply changing the note recipe. Here’s how to build the most common ‘open’ shape of the G7 on guitar.