Amazing Grace Chords: A Step-by-Step Guide for Beginners

Music has the incredible power to soothe the soul, convey deep emotions, and connect people from all walks of life. One timeless and beloved hymn that resonates with many is “Amazing Grace.” Its beautiful melody and heartfelt lyrics make it a favorite for both listeners and aspiring musicians.

If you’re a beginner looking to play this classic on your guitar, you’re in the right place. In this step-by-step guide, we’ll walk you through mastering the “Amazing Grace” chords, ensuring that even if you’re just starting out, you’ll be able to create a harmonious rendition of this iconic tune.

Why Learn “Amazing Grace” Chords?

Before we dive into the chords themselves, let’s take a moment to understand why “Amazing Grace” is an excellent choice for beginners:

1. Simplicity:

“Amazing Grace” is renowned for its straightforward chord progression. It primarily utilizes common chords that are relatively easy to grasp, even for novice guitarists. By learning this song, you’ll gain confidence in your ability to play recognizable tunes.

2. Emotional Impact:

This hymn carries a deep emotional weight, making it a powerful song to play. Whether you’re strumming for personal enjoyment or performing for an audience, “Amazing Grace” has the capacity to touch hearts and leave a lasting impression.

3. Versatility:

Once you’ve mastered the chords for “Amazing Grace,” you’ll find that they can be applied to other songs as well. The foundational knowledge you gain from this guide will open the door to a broader repertoire of music.

Getting Started: Guitar Basics

Before we delve into the specific chords, let’s make sure you’re equipped with some fundamental guitar knowledge:

1. Tuning

Ensure your guitar is properly tuned. The standard tuning for a six-string guitar, from lowest to highest pitch, is E-A-D-G-B-E. You can use an electronic tuner or a tuning app to achieve the correct tuning.

2. Fretting Technique

Familiarize yourself with the proper fretting technique. Use the tips of your fingers to press the strings against the fretboard, ensuring a clean and clear sound when you strum.

3. Strumming

Practice your strumming technique. You can use a pick or your fingers, whichever you’re more comfortable with. Maintain a steady rhythm and focus on consistent strumming patterns.

Now that you’re acquainted with these basics, let’s proceed to the chords needed to play “Amazing Grace.”

Chords for “Amazing Grace”

The chords for “Amazing Grace” are relatively simple, consisting of three basic chords: G, C, and D. Here’s how to play each of them:

1. G Chord

  • Place your index finger on the 2nd fret of the A string.
  • Put your middle finger on the 3rd fret of the low E string.
  • Your ring finger should be on the 3rd fret of the B string.
  • Strum all the strings except the high E string.

2. C Chord

  • Put your index finger on the 1st fret of the B string.
  • Place your middle finger on the 2nd fret of the D string.
  • Your ring finger should be on the 3rd fret of the A string.
  • Strum from the A string down to the high E string.

3. D Chord

  • Position your index finger on the 2nd fret of the G string.
  • Put your middle finger on the 2nd fret of the high E string.
  • Place your ring finger on the 3rd fret of the B string.
  • Strum from the D string down to the high E string.

Playing “Amazing Grace”: Step-by-Step

Now that you’re familiar with the chords, let’s break down how to play “Amazing Grace” step by step:

Step 1: Learn the Chord Progression

The entire song revolves around a simple chord progression: G, C, and D. Practice transitioning between these chords until you can do so smoothly.

Step 2: Master the Strumming Pattern

“Amazing Grace” typically uses a basic strumming pattern of downstrokes. Start by strumming each chord once, focusing on timing and rhythm. As you become more comfortable, experiment with variations to add your personal touch.

Step 3: Follow the Lyrics

To enhance your playing, follow along with the lyrics of “Amazing Grace.” Pay attention to where chord changes occur, and ensure your transitions align with the song’s phrasing.

Step 4: Practice, Practice, Practice

Like any skill, practice is key to improvement. Dedicate time each day to play “Amazing Grace.” Gradually increase your speed and fluency in transitioning between chords.

Step 5: Embrace Variation

Once you’ve mastered the basics, feel free to experiment. Add embellishments, fingerpicking, or different strumming patterns to make the song your own.

Tips for Success

As you embark on your journey to master “Amazing Grace” on the guitar, keep these tips in mind:

1. Be Patient

Learning any musical instrument takes time and dedication. Don’t be discouraged by initial challenges, and stay committed to your practice routine.

2. Use Online Resources

Take advantage of online tutorials, chord diagrams, and video lessons. There are countless resources available to assist you in your guitar journey.

3. Play Along with Recordings

Listening to professional renditions of “Amazing Grace” can provide inspiration and help you understand how the chords fit into the song’s structure.

4. Seek Feedback

Don’t hesitate to seek feedback from experienced guitarists or music teachers. Constructive criticism can accelerate your progress.

Amazing Grace Chords Chart

[Verse 1]
G                   C       G
Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound,
G              D           G
That saved a wretch like me.
G                   C       G
I once was lost, but now I'm found,
G              D          G
Was blind but now I see.

[Verse 2]
G                 C      G
'Twas grace that taught my heart to fear,
G              D           G
And grace my fears relieved.
G                   C       G
How precious did that grace appear,
G              D          G
The hour I first believed.

[Verse 3]
G                  C        G
Through many dangers, toils, and snares,
G              D           G
I have already come.
G                 C      G
'Tis grace that brought me safe thus far,
G              D          G
And grace will lead me home.

[Verse 4]
G                 C        G
The Lord has promised good to me,
G              D           G
His word my hope secures.
G                 C        G
He will my shield and portion be,
G              D          G
As long as life endures.

[Verse 5]
G                  C       G
When we've been there ten thousand years,
G              D           G
Bright shining as the sun,
G                  C       G
We've no less days to sing God's praise,
G              D          G
Than when we first begun.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the basic chords for “Amazing Grace”?

The basic chords for “Amazing Grace” are G, C, and D. These chords form the foundation of the song.

Can I play “Amazing Grace” on a different instrument besides the guitar?

Yes, “Amazing Grace” can be played on various instruments, including piano, violin, flute, and more. The chords and sheet music may differ depending on the instrument, so it’s essential to find the appropriate notation for your chosen instrument.

Are there alternative chord progressions for “Amazing Grace”?

While the G-C-D progression is the most common, some variations and adaptations exist. Musicians may choose to use different chord progressions or add variations to create their unique interpretation.

How can I improve my chord transitions for “Amazing Grace”?

Practice is key to improving chord transitions. Start by practicing each chord separately, then work on transitioning between them slowly. Gradually increase your speed as you become more comfortable.

What strumming pattern should I use for “Amazing Grace”?

The strumming pattern for “Amazing Grace” can vary depending on your preference and playing style. For beginners, a simple downstroke strumming pattern works well. As you gain confidence, you can experiment with different strumming patterns to add variety to your performance.

Where can I find video tutorials or resources to help me learn “Amazing Grace” chords?

There are many online resources, including video tutorials on platforms like YouTube and instructional websites dedicated to guitar and music. These resources often provide step-by-step guidance, chord diagrams, and play-along demonstrations to help you learn the song.

Is it necessary to sing while playing “Amazing Grace”?

Singing while playing is optional. Many musicians choose to play the song instrumentally, while others enjoy singing along. The choice is entirely up to you and your personal preference.


“Amazing Grace” is a timeless hymn that has touched the hearts of people for generations. Learning to play this beautiful song on the guitar, with its simple yet emotive chords, is an excellent starting point for beginners and a rewarding experience for seasoned musicians. The G-C-D chord progression forms the backbone of the song, providing a solid foundation for your musical journey.

As you embark on your quest to master “Amazing Grace” chords, remember that practice, patience, and dedication are key to your success. Whether you choose to play it instrumentally or sing along, the song’s message of grace and redemption carries a universal appeal that can be appreciated in both religious and non-religious settings.

Utilize the resources available, such as chord charts, online tutorials, and video lessons, to aid in your learning process. Don’t hesitate to explore advanced techniques and personalized embellishments to make the song your own.

About the author

Band Xpert is the home to guitar lessons, tutorials, articles on how to improve your guitar playing, rock bands, exercises, chords, tabs, scales, articles on famous musicians, and much more.

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