Instructor: Dwight H.
From big bands to rock ensembles, and even R&B groups, Dwight has played with them all. He's been teaching guitar for over 10 years. When teaching, he draws from his experience on stage, injecting the knowledge of what it takes to be a gigging musician into every lesson.

C7 Guitar Chord (16 Easy Ways To Play with Charts)


The C7 guitar chord is a lot like C Major, in that it includes the notes "C," "E," and "G." At the same time, it's a different beast, due to the fact that this chord also includes a "Bb," and the execution of this chord on your guitar is going to be quite unlike the voicings you've practiced for C Major.

There are quite a few to master, but with diligent, continuous practice, you'll be able to play this chord all the way up to the 10th fret on your guitar. Here are the 16 best variations you'll want to note…

How to Play C7 Guitar Chord

The very first voicing you'll want to get under your belt is the open position one right at the top of the guitar. It might well be the easiest to play as well:

C7 Guitar Chord

  • Place your 1st finger on the 2nd string/1st fret
  • Place your 2nd finger on the 4th string/2nd fret
  • Place your 3rd finger on the 5th string/3rd fret
  • Place your 4th finger on the 3rd string/3rd fret
  • Play string 1 open
  • Mute string 6

C7 Guitar Chord #2

This is but one way to play C7 in open position, however. You can also perform this similar variation that changes one of your notes:

C7 Guitar Chord Open 2

  • Place your 1st finger on the 4th string/2nd fret
  • Place your 2nd finger on the 5th string/3rd fret
  • Place your 3rd finger on the 3rd string/3rd fret
  • Place your 4th finger on the 1st string/4th fret
  • Mute strings 2 and 6

C7 Guitar Chord #2 Simplified

If you find this too difficult at first, however, you can try a "simplified" version of the same voicing:

C7 Guitar Chord Simplified

  • Place your 1st finger on the 4th string/2nd fret
  • Place your 2nd finger on the 5th string/3rd fret
  • Place your 3rd finger on the 3rd string/3rd fret
  • Mute strings 1, 2, and 6

C7 Guitar Chord 5-String Barre

Beginners may find muting so many strings at once to be a tricky proposition, though, so there's also an opportunity for a 5-string barre chord version of C7 on the 3rd fret:

C7 Guitar Chord 5-String Barre

  • Use your 1st finger to bar the strings at the 3rd fret
  • Place your 3rd finger on the 4th string/5th fret
  • Place your 4th finger on the 2nd string/5th fret
  • Mute string 6

C7 Guitar Chord Alternate Barre #1

And don't forget the "alternate barre" you can perform here at the 3rd fret:

C7 Guitar Chord Alternate Barre 1

  • Use your 1st finger to bar the strings at the 3rd fret
  • Place your 2nd finger on the 4th string/5th fret
  • Place your 3rd finger on the 2nd string/5th fret
  • Place your 4th finger on the 1st string/6th fret
  • Mute string 6

C7 Guitar Chord Alternate Barre #2

Moving up the 5th fret, you'll have to perform some ample stretches in order to pull off these voicings:

C7 Guitar Chord Alternate Barre 2

  • Place your 1st finger on the 2nd string/5th fret
  • Place your 2nd finger on the 5th string/7th fret
  • Place your 3rd finger on the 6th string/8th fret
  • Place your 4th finger on the 4th string/8th fret
  • Play string 3 open
  • Mute string 1

C7 Guitar Chord Alternate Barre #3

C7 Guitar Chord Alternate Barre 3

  • Use your 1st finger to cover strings 2, 3, and 4 on the 5th fret
  • Place your 2nd finger on the 1st string/6th fret
  • Place your 3rd finger on the 5th string/7th fret
  • Place your 4th finger on the 6th string/8th fret

C7 Guitar Chord Alternate Barre #4

The 5th fret also provides opportunity for a tight, funky sounding C7 chord, so long as you can avoid hitting the 5th and 6th strings:

C7 Guitar Chord Alternate Barre 4

  • Use your 1st finger to cover strings 2, 3, and 4 at the 5th fret
  • Place your 2nd finger on the 1st string/6th fret
  • Mute strings 5 and 6

C7 Guitar Chord - D7 Shape #1

The 6th and 7th fret offer a few additional options that incorporate the "D7" chord shape:

C7 Guitar Chord D7 Shape 1

  • Place your 1st finger on the 1st string/6th fret
  • Place your 2nd finger on the 5th string/7th fret
  • Place your 3rd finger on the 6th string/8th fret
  • Place your 4th finger on the 4th string/8th fret
  • Play string 3 open
  • Mute string 2

C7 Guitar Chord - D7 Shape #2

C7 Guitar Chord D7 Shape 2

  • Place your 1st finger on the 5th string/7th fret
  • Place your 2nd finger on the 6th string/8th fret
  • Place your 3rd finger on the 4th string/8th fret
  • Play string 3 open
  • Mute strings 1 and 2

C7 Guitar Chord - D7 Shape #2

C7 Guitar Chord D7 Shape 3

  • Place your 1st finger on the 5th string/7th fret
  • Place your 2nd finger on the 6th string/8th fret
  • Place your 3rd finger on the 4th string/8th fret
  • Place your 4th finger on the 2nd string/8th fret
  • Mute strings 1 and 3

C7 Guitar Chord Alternate Barre #5

Move up to the 8th fret, and you'll find two more barre chord variations of C7, these ones involving 6 strings:

C7 Guitar Chord Alternate Barre 5

  • Use your 1st finger to bar the strings at the 8th fret
  • Place your 2nd finger on the 3rd string/9th fret
  • Place your 3rd finger on the 5th string/10th fret
  • Place your 4th finger on the 2nd string/11th fret

C7 Guitar Chord Alternate Barre #6

C7 Guitar Chord Alternate Barre 6

  • Use your 1st finger to bar the strings at the 8th fret
  • Place your 2nd finger on the 3rd string/9th fret
  • Place your 3rd finger on the 5th string/10th fret

C7 Guitar Chord Non-Barre #1

You don't have to use a barre shape to play C7 at the 8th fret, mind you. There are also two non-barre voicings for you to try, if you can stretch your fingers and mute the strings like a pro:

C7 Guitar Chord Non-Barre 1

  • Place your 1st finger on the 6th string/8th fret
  • Place your 2nd finger on the 5th string/10th fret
  • Place your 3rd finger on the 4th string/10th fret
  • Place your 4th finger on the 2nd string/11th fret
  • Play strings 1 and 3 open

C7 Guitar Chord Non-Barre #2

C7 Guitar Chord Non-Barre 2

  • Place your 1st finger on the 6th string/8th fret
  • Place your 2nd finger on the 4th string/8th fret
  • Place your 3rd finger on the 2nd string/8th fret
  • Place your 4th finger on the 3rd string/9th fret
  • Mute strings 1 and 5

C7 Guitar Chord 10th Fret

There's one more voicing for you to try, if you're up for it, you can take C7 up to the 10th fret for a bright and vibrant sound that adds a much-needed punch to almost any song:

C7 Guitar Chord 10th Fret

  • Place your 1st finger on the 4th string/10th fret
  • Place your 2nd finger on the 2nd string/11th fret
  • Place your 3rd finger on the 3rd string/12th fret
  • Place your 4th finger on the 1st string/12th fret
  • Mute strings 5 and 6

Playing C7 Like a Pro

Wrapping your head around this chord might take a bit of time, especially if you're just getting the hang of basic chords like C Major, but once you have a few voicings in the bag, you can start trying this chord out in songs like:

  • "Dirty Work" by Steely Dan
  • "Goodbye Porkpie Hat" by Charles Mingus
  • "Straighten up and Fly Right" by Nat King Cole

You'll need a strong command of a few other chords to pull off these songs in their entirety, so be sure to check out some of our other lessons while you're at it. Good luck, and as always, happy practicing!

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Bm Guitar Chord

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