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Learn soulful guitar chords with just a few two-note shapes

Steve Cropper
(Image credit: Don Paulsen/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)
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Guitar skills: Soul and Motown players such as Steve Cropper, Joe Messina and Dennis Coffey would often strip their chords down to just two notes, creating memorable melodic accompaniments and fills. 

Don’t worry though! These note pairs invariably come from well known standard shapes. Summoning the soul vibe is just a matter of getting comfortable with playing the essential notes rather than grabbing for the whole chord.

Chords

(Image credit: Future)

Chords

(Image credit: Future)

Tone tips: Dial in a light, bright tone with plenty of treble bite. Go easy on the bass though - guitar rarely has much weight in soul mixes. Spring style reverb will give an authentic vintage vibe.

Soul lesson 

Though these are basically all the same movable shape, the tab allows you to see exactly where the two-note pairs have been cherry picked for the melodic demo piece. 

In addition to the first and third string played together, you will find the fifth and third gives further possibilities. Simple, but very effective!

Click on the top right of the tab to enlarge it 

(Image credit: Future)

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