The E chord is made up of three notes – E, G# and B.
You can play an E chord on piano in three different ways:
- Root Position – This is where the E note is the lowest note of the chord
- First Inversion – This is where the G# note is the lowest note of the chord
- Second Inversion – This is where the B note is the lowest note of the chord
I’ll quickly explain that in some more detail.
Then I’ll show you some famous songs which use E chords. These are great for practising… because they’re fairly simple and actually sound pretty good.
But first let’s get the theory out of the way.
E Chord Piano – Root Position
Whenever you play an E chord on piano, and E is the lowest note, that’s known as root position. It looks like this:
There are seven places on a standard piano where you can play an E chord in root position. If you have a piano close by, try playing each one. This will help you become familiar with them.
Below you’ll see what all seven look like on sheet music. Click the play button to hear what they sound like too.
I’m sure it’s not the best thing you’ve ever heard. But don’t worry… the good stuff is coming.
E Chord Piano – First Inversion
Whenever you play an E chord on piano, and G# is the lowest note, that’s known as the first inversion. Here’s what it looks like:
And here it is played in all positions on a standard piano:
E Chord Piano – Second Inversion
Whenever you play an E chord on piano, and B is the lowest note, that’s known as the second inversion. Here’s what the second inversion looks like:
And here is the second inversion played in all positions on a standard piano:
Famous “E Chord” Songs
Okay, fun time!
Let’s take a look at some A chords used in actual songs. I hope you love these songs just as much as I do…
Each one has a fairly simple arrangement – block chords in the left hand and melody in the right. I find this the best way to learn new chords.
First, have a go playing them as written. But once you get comfortable with that, feel free to try each of the different E chord inversions (covered above).
And then try them in different positions on the piano.
And if you really want to test yourself:
Try playing the melody lower on the piano, with your left hand. And the chords higher on the piano with your right hand.
The first song we’ll look at is Skinny Love by Birdy. A good song to start with because it uses E chords in root position only.
E Chord Piano Progression 1 – Skinny Love
The next song is What Makes You Beautiful by One Direction. This song uses E chords in both root position and second inversion.
E Chord Piano Progression 2 – What Makes You Beautiful
Finally, lets take a look at This Kiss by Faith Hill. This arrangement uses all three E chord inversions – root position, first inversion and second inversion.
Once you get the hang of these progressions, don’t forget to play around with them. Practice the chords in different positions and different inversions. And see which ones you like best.
E Chord Piano Progression 3 – This Kiss
That’s about all for this post. I really hope you enjoyed it and learnt something new about E chords.
If you have a spare minute, I’d love to hear from you. Just head on over to the contact page and send me a message…
And if you tell me which songs you’re learning or want to learn, I’ll try to include them in future posts.