8 Chords Online

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Tag Archives: worship guitar

Question about the G chord, it is new and for modern music

On Apr 28, 2011, at 10:22 AM, Tim wrote:

I am a little slow in following the video courses but, I noticed that your G chord is different than some others, and it looks like there are a number of different ways to play the G chord.  My question to you is, do I need to learn it the way you show, or if it is easier for me another way, will it be ok to learn it differently.  I think I can get it the way you show but the hard part is getting my ring finger and pinky both to be there without muting the string and I can’t seem to consistently place any of my fingers where they need to be without them resting on another string.  I hope that the more I practice the more I will be able to keep my fingers out of the way.

Thanks for the free course and I am going to continue to practice learning these 3 chords before I go on to course #2.
Tim Lelek


Eric Wrote:

Tim, It is ok for you to learn this new more modern form of the G chord.  When most modern songs from worship to country approach the G chord, it looks just like this new shape.  When you are playing an older song, hymn, older country feel or some songs that call for that more traditional G chord, you will know to switch to it but for most songs in modern worship, this new G chord shape is the best and is very popular.   So, just keep practicing it until it feel natural.  Just remember to keep your third finger (ring finger) down when switching between the G, C, D and Em7.  This is your anchor!

Make sure your hand is tilted very nicely to avoid always muting other strings accidently!

That problem is rooted in your posture of your hand.

Hope this helps!



Ryan Stover Student Interview

Hear from Ryan Stover about his journey from student to worship leader at his church!


Be still and know…

Today during worship, I let go for just a moment and stopped looking at the worship band, the stage, the lights and at every single part of a worship service.  I stepped back with my mind and looked at the whole picture.  I saw something very nice.  I began to see just 1 big picture…  a scene of people and efforts all praising God.  And I let myself go with it for a few minutes and began to see that God sees the big picture too.  He hears the bigger part of the song.  Sure He is in the details and He sees each heart, but he also stands back and hears the sound of the saints gathering and singing praises to Him and about his son Jesus.  He is well pleased.  It is no small miracle that all of these “not so perfect” people gathered at this place and time and have laid themselves aside to sing a praise song to God.  It is a huge blessing to our Father.  So many people seem to just stand and watch, but inside our hearts, the songs and words flow in an out and up to God.  I read in the bible that we are to be still and know the He is God.  Not to be so wrapped up with all the hype of church and worship services and just to listen and worship God with simple quiet hearts.  That is what He is really looking for, and today I believe that He found it.  Many worshipers got it right in churches all over the world!  Not all, but many worshipers connected and God is pleased.  Next time you are all caught up in preparing and working for the worship service or practicing and getting every chord right as you play, remember to also be still and know that God is really just interested in connecting with you.  So take the time to connect with Him.  Take a step back and connect.  Let it all soak in that you are moving and living under the hand of the Great God.

Psalm 46:10 (NIV)

“Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.”

Listen to the song and read the lyrics from Steven Curtis Chapman…

Be still and know that He is God Be still and know that He is holy
Be still, O restless soul of mine Bow before the Prince of peace
Let the noise and clamor cease

Be still and know that He is God Be still and know that He is faithful
Consider all that He has done Stand in awe and be amazed
And know that He will never change Be still

Be still, and know that He is God
Be still; Be speechless

Be still and know that He is God Be still and know He is our Father
Come rest your head upon His breast Listen to the rhythm of His unfailing heart of love Beating for His little ones
Calling each of us to come Be still, Be still

5 Tips for electric guitar in the worship band

Get the right gear!
Get the right gear first!

For about 2 years I have been leading worship from the ELECTRIC guitar!  Deffinely a challenge and something that has taken a long time to get the hang of during a worship service.  Here are my top 5 tips for getting started with it.

Tip #1

If you are new at the approach of leading worship from electric guitar, be sure to have a strong accoustic player in the band with you and get the right gear.  Click here for Eric’s top 5 tips for electric guitar worship leading!

Tip #2

Get the right guitar.  Make sure it stays in tune.  Make sure it is a good quality and can produce the right tone for worship.   I use a Fender Mexican Strat with 3 single coil pickups.

Tip #3

Get the right tone…. This is huge and you can work for years tweeking it so be patient and be dilligent.   I currently use the Pod Live X3 Pedal. Very versitle though sometimes hard to set up.

Tip #4

Get the right monitor system.  I found that stereo floor wedges worked great for this.  I sent my electric through one and the other guitar player through the other.  This gave great seperation and allowed me to really hear what was going on.  I play with a band with 2 electric guitars so this is really important.   I love the Aviom system…. it is the best thing that has ever happened to me concering sound system technology…. more about that later.

Tip #5

Once you are all set up and ready to play the electric guitar for worship, be sure you don’t melt anyones face off (except for maybe yours).  Work with the band, your tones, your sound team to get the best blend for your instrument in the worship setting.  You are going to have to change the way you strum, pick and overall how you play the guitar to make this work.
I switched to electric in the beginning because many of the players at my church were unable to play the lead parts and my backgroud as a lead guitar player for my previous bands gave me the edge for playing the new electric parts.
Check out the new arrangement of the song “Mighty is the Power of the Cross Video Click Here”
More on techniqes for electric guitar will follow in my upcoming blogs and videos.  Watch some of my videos on youtube to get the feel for how I use the electric guitar in worship.


I sing and I am renewed… Finding God’s healing through worship.

Sometimes being with friends and having a great time is just what you need to get out of a bad

worship service

Renew me God.

mood or just have a better day. I find that it is very important to have Christian fellowship with others and to be encouraged in my faith daily. It is similar with God but more intimate and more life changing. I have noticed that leading worship and pouring out those familiar worship words sometimes penetrates my heart in a deep way. I can really feel that God is changing me, healing me, speaking truth back to me. In fact, the Bible says that he dances over us. It is as if our worship time is just a time for friendship between us and our God.  Being with God like this in worship time brings true renewal to our lives.

I have been leading worship for many years at my home church weekly and I have always had to fight to stay renewed.  Things in life and in ministy tend to reach down in your heart and drag the peace right out of you.  Many times we just go on “knowing” but have a hard time “feeling” the peace of God deep down.  But when we sing and worship, we are opening our heart to God, calling on Him, being built up by Him.  Do you feel the strain?  I recently sang the song You Are Good for a congregation in Kentucky and the words rang out in my heart…. “my life depends on you…. you restore me…. You alone God can forgive and heal my heart….   You are Good.”

As a worshiper, a minister, a guitar player, a true Christian… being rooted in Christ and being renewed by Him is the only way to sustain peace in this life and to be effective in our ministry and in our day-to-day living.  Christ gives us the strength and clarifies the purpose for our songs and our ministry and He will always renew us when we spend time with Him.

Reflect on this passage.

Isaiah 40:30-31 (The Message)

For even young people tire and drop out,
young folk in their prime stumble and fall.
But those who wait upon God get fresh strength.
They spread their wings and soar like eagles,
They run and don’t get tired,
they walk and don’t lag behind.

Isaiah 40:30-31 (King James Version)

30Even the youths shall faint and be weary, and the young men shall utterly fall:31But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.

God knows where we are going

God knows where we are going.
And the journey is blessed by God.

Eric Roberts Picture I sometimes don’t know exactly where I am headed and why I am at a certain place…. in ministry, in family life and in many of the aspects of a true Christian life.  But when I cry out for God, when I realize that it is all because of Him, I get a sense of direction and He leads the way.  Where is your musical journey headed?

I know that in ministry and while pursuing your dreams in music, the road can sometimes be foggy and the light seems to be shining at the end of a 1 million mile tunnel that you will never get to the end of.  BUT I also realize that through the journey we find out who we really are and who God really wants us to be.  What do people say about you?  Where is the fruit of what you are doing?  Are you focused on making music with excellence and giving all of your talents to God without holding anything back?  I know that I have been challenged with these questions over and over again in music ministry.  I have to continuously remember that I am nothing without what Christ did for me.  I walk out on that stage to sing praises and it all hits me.  I have no right to be there.  Nothing I did can make all the wrongs of my sin go away.  BUT Christ has saved me and picked me up. It is by the blood of Christ that all my sins are washed away.   So now when I sing out a song on praise it comes from a grateful heart.  I really believe that He is worthy and I am just singing to give back my love to him, my true appreciation to my saving God.   Remember where you came from.  Don’t let that pass you by.  Because I always try to keep that in my mind.  I know that I would never be where I am without the love of Christ.  I think this is what really fuels my worship and passion for music and for making music for the creator.

If you are leading worship or just learning, take a moment and remember where you were 1 year, 2 years, 5 years ago.   The journey you have traveled has been blessed by God and He always knows where you are.  I know that is true when I look back.  Looking back is what gives me the assurance that I can fully trust him as I move forward.

The words of this hymn say it all in such a beautiful way:

’Tis so sweet to trust in Jesus,
And to take Him at His Word;
Just to rest upon His promise,
And to know, “Thus says the Lord!”

Jesus, Jesus, how I trust Him!
How I’ve proved Him o’er and o’er
Jesus, Jesus, precious Jesus!
O for grace to trust Him more!

O how sweet to trust in Jesus,
Just to trust His cleansing blood;
And in simple faith to plunge me
’Neath the healing, cleansing flood!

Yes, ’tis sweet to trust in Jesus,
Just from sin and self to cease;
Just from Jesus simply taking
Life and rest, and joy and peace.

I’m so glad I learned to trust Thee,
Precious Jesus, Savior, Friend;
And I know that Thou art with me,
Wilt be with me to the end.

New facebook group for 8 Chords

I just started this new group and am really excited to be able to network with all of my students on facebook.  I am going to be posting videos there with new songs and tips for you.  And, you can post your videos and comments to me as well.  I would also love to hear if any of you are writing songs.  You can post them there.  It is easy to use.  Just search for 8 chords 100 songs worship guitar group in your facebook and join!

Here is the address to join! You do have to have a facebook account but that is easy, safe and free.

Second Edition is now available!

The new second edition of the 8 Chords 100 Songs program is now available.  Also, new songbooks are available.  The complete pack comes with a songbook with over 100 lead sheets to the top worship songs!

And, I teach you how to play any song with just a few chords!

See details at the online store