In this guitar lesson I’m going to teach you a chord I first learned in the song “Hold on Loosely” by the band 38 Special. I call this the “38 Special Chord” even though it’s used by many guitar players in all kinds of different bands.
I will also show you how this chord is used by AC/DC in the song “Hells Bells”. So this could be called the AC/DC “Secret” Guitar Chords as well 🙂
- Learn more about alternate bass note chords like this in my Rhythm Guitar Mastery Phase 2 course.
(Video Guitar Lesson)
(See 38 Special Secret Guitar Chord – Page 2 for an MP3 jam track download and a lesson printout page.)
“Hold On Loosely” by 38 Special – Guitar Tablature
So first let’s take a look at this new guitar chord in the song where I first learned it…”Hold on Loosely” by the southern rock group 38 Special. The “secret” chord form is the B/D# and the A/C# chord. I will explain a little more about the chord after you have some fun jammin’ on this tune.
So here is the guitar tablature for the first part of the song “Hold on Loosely”. Pick down using a slight palm mute on everything except where you see the accents “>”. For the accents you will not palm mute, and you will pick up.
“Hold On Loosely” by 38 Special – Guitar Chords
And here are the chord charts for the chords in “Hold On Loosely”.
The Secret 38 Special Guitar Chords – B/D# & A/C#
So the “secret” chord is a type of slash chord. Slash chords are a type of guitar chord with an alternate bass note. So when you see the chord symbol B/D#…that is a B chord, with a D# (D sharp) in the bass.
The bass note is the lowest note of a chord. B is what is known as the root of the chord. The main note the chord is build from. And if you just saw the chord symbol “B”, then B is the root…and the bass note. But for B/D#, B is still the root, but the bass note is D#.
In the chord charts above you see that in the B/D# chord form, and the A/C# chord there is an open circle on the 4th string. That is the root of the chord form. The note that is in the bass in this chord form is referred to as the 3rd of the chord.
Music Theory Stuff
Major chords are build from the 1st, 3rd and 5th degrees of a major scale. So the D# is called the 3rd of the chord. This particular version of the B/D# chord does not have a 5th.
The Secret Guitar Chord in “Hells Bells” by AC/DC
Here is the same chord form found in the song “Hells Bells” from AC/DC. This time it’s a G/B chord.
For an MP3 Jam Track and music stand printout page, go to page 2 of this guitar lesson.
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