Substitute chords for the key of C

Substitute Chords – part 2

Previously we looked at a whole range of chords you can get nice alternative voicings with in the key of G. For many players once they start using these G based chords they simply put on a capo for other keys and never learn any other shapes again! This is a workable solution but is part of the reason so many worship songs sound the same.

So next let’s look at the same idea in the key of C. If you don’t usually play in C then you may not realise how different it sounds to G so do try it as it will add a whole level of contrast to your usual sounds.



The great thing about the these C based shapes is that when you get to the F chord you don’t have to play a barre and if you are moving from an F to a G then all you have to do its slide everything up two frets. Simples!

Again, just like G the 1/3 (C/E) and 5/7 (G/B) chord options (see previous post) are used a lot so try those too.

See also the second set of chords which provide even closer sounding and easier to finger voicings in C. The idea here is that your little finger stays on string 1 (top E) fret 3 at all times, your index finger just plays string 2 (B string) fret 1 where necessary and the other shapes are formed just with your middle or ring fingers. This is probably the most efficient way to cover all chords in any of the open keys and sounds so smooth too!


Get the video lessons

All these shapes are taken from our our Acoustic Intermediate Worship Guitar Course so if you want to get loads more ideas and applications for them take a look at the DVDs. This particular set of substitute chords is available in this 35 minute downloadable lesson so if you want to get loads more ideas and applications for how to use these then take a look.