One of our readers who was recently digesting the LeftyFretz left handed chord diagram asked if I could produce a similar chart for powerchords. I’ll take any excuse to fire up Photoshop so here you go my friend, for your viewing pleasure – the LeftyFretz left handed powerchord chart.
I’ve split the diagram into two parts; the top half illustrates the shapes in a chord chart layout, and the bottom shows the powerchords in tab format. I’ve showed the five most common powerchord shapes – very simple to learn, and once you know them you have the knowledge play a chord anywhere on the neck.
You may also notice that for each shape two of the notes are red and one is blue. Technically you can play a powerchord with only the two red notes, but for a little added ‘oomph’ add the optional blue note (the root octave) – it’s up to you. I’ve indicated to play the chords using your first, third and fourth fingers but it’s also perfectly acceptable to use different fingerings – experiment and find out what works best for you.
The name of the chord is determined by the root note, which in the case of all of these shapes is the note you play with your index finger. So for example the first diagram shows an F chord because in standard tuning the first fret on the low E string is an F. Slide the entire shape up two frets and you’re now in G – easy!
Powerchords are also known as fifth chords and this is how you should name the chords when writing them down. For example a G powerchord would be written as G5. They’re called fifths because they consist of the root note and the fifth note of the major scale.
All that’s left to do now is crank up that distortion and rock out! ;)
Be sure to also check out our interactive left handed common chords chart!