the Key of A

The Key of A

Guitar Level: Beginner

Listed in the table below is the key of A major with most of the popular guitar chords for this key.

The Key of A
A B C# D E F# G# A
Typical Chords A Bm C#m D E F#m G#mflat5 A
Basic Form x02220 224432 446654 xx0232 022100 244222 Not very common x02220
Typical Slash Chords A/C#x4222xA/E




Bm/Dxx0432 D/F#200232D/A




Typ 7 Chords A7x02020 Bm7224232 C#m7446454 D7xx0212 E7020100 F#m7242222
Other Chords You Might See A2002200Am







And here’s a few scale patterns in the key of A:If you are new to scales, most guitarists start with the major pentatonic because it is one of the easier ones to learn and can universally be used over a lot of different musical styles.  One way to practice soloing would be to find a song in the key of A (it will have a treble clef with 3 sharps) and gather up the chord sheets and an MP3 of the song.  First verify that the recording is actually in the key of A by playing along with it.  If it is in the key of A, and your chords are correct, you can then add a few solos by playing through the A major pentatonic scale over the recording.  First just go up and down the scale to see how it sounds over the music and depending on the complexity of the song, it might actually sound quite nice and harmonious as is.  Next, vary your pattern and jump around a little while still staying with the scale notes.  You are now on your way to learning how to improvise a solo.

Finally, here’s a little tip that I picked up so long ago I forgot who told me about it.  When practicing scales, or any solo improvisation, tie a bandana around your guitar neck, behind where you are playing.  So for the key of A, tie the bandana around the second fret.  This does two things.  First, it lowers your action a bit, making the strings easier to play, and second, it damps out any unwanted notes that you might erroneously hit.  This is a beginner’s trick, for practice only, and you will eventually want to do without the bandana.  It’s essentially a crutch but it just might be the thing that some of you beginning guitarists are looking for.