Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Guitar chords for hymns

My first solo pastorate came to hurt for musical accompaniment. The hapless church's self-taught guitarist pastor reluctantly rose to the occasion by default.

Back in the 1980s there was no interwebs to speak of (Algore hadn't invented it), and limited music available. So, though unable to read music, I chorded familiar hymns by ear. We sang two hymns, two choruses at each service. I did the best I could.

Wish I'd had THIS!

(h-t m'mate Craig)

UPDATE: Gary in the meta also points to this resource. (Thanks, Gary!)


Jon said...

It still kills me that I haven't learned how to play an instrument. My grandmother always told me that I would have been good at the piano. Bah! Stupid video games!

Paula said...

Ah, if it only had the notes to go with it I could play them on my Wurlitzer Funmaker organ! I never learned to play bass cleft, only chords, which is completely useless with most sheet music.

Speaking of Algore, the letters of his name can be rearranged to spell...

wait for it......

Ogre Al!!!!!!!

candy said...

Saved it. Can use to play piano since I read chords, not notes.

Associate-to-the-Pastor said...

I will save it, since I literally just started learning guitar last week in hopes to eventually be able to lead worship, since we don't really have a worship leader.

Gary said...

See also the RUF hymnbook at:

Gary said...

Many of the RUF songs also have mp3 demos; can be helpful for a newb guitarist (like me!).

Jay said...

Sent links to worship leader at my church. He just loves it when I talk about hymns, too bad they are not "relevant" enough for our church to use.

Craig Schwarze said...

It was a pleasure rediscovering the old hymns. I'm sure one of the reasons they went out of fashion was because the chording for them is so often poorly done.

Stripping them back to simple chord arrangements has made a big difference for me, and in our church too.

JackW said...

I've been playing guitar at church for several years now and here's my thoughts:

Guitarist like sharps and keyboards like flats. Three chords and capo!

Most hymns are in flats, so the chords in that link are probably not the same key as in the hymnal.

Most music is written for keyboard and even guitar based songs you find in music books are done for keyboard which is a mystery I've yet to solve.

Taking two years of classical guitar lessons was the best thing I've ever done to improve my playing.

Please make sure your church has a CCLI license.

My guitars were made by carpenters in Nazareth and they are the best in the world. (ok, I'm a little biased on the last point.)

There are several good sites to get free guitar tabs, but buy the music please ... feed a song writer.

Solameanie said...

I thought you were a drummer. Now I learn you're a multi-instrumentalist.

Good boy!

BTW, Blogger is getting pretty risque with their "word verification" offerings. I won't repeat what mine was just now.