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In many of my seminars and clinics, I often ask my students how many chord shapes they think exist for the guitar. Many will try to work out an answer using straightforward maths, but soon flounder when they begin to factor in all the variables that the guitar’s tuning and fretboard configuration tend to throw into the calculation. After all, when you take major, minor, dominant, extended and inverted chord types and list all the alternative locations on the guitar neck that it’s possible to play them you’re going to end up with an astronomical figure... aren’t you?

Well, no actually. The answer’s five…

Five? Yes, unbelievably, all chords on the guitar are based on five primary shapes that most guitarists already know. So, in order to find any chord they need, all they lack is a system and the knowledge of how to apply it.

Back in the 1960s a method evolved for mapping out the guitar fretboard which went on to become something of a ‘best kept secret’ among the instrument’s cognoscenti. It was known as ‘The CAGED System’ and offered, for possibly the first time, a technique for mapping out the fretboard in a simple, efficient and user-friendly way.

Everyone I have introduced the CAGED System to has agreed that it has changed the way they look at the fretboard completely and helped transform the guitar into the musical instrument it should be.

In this app, I set out the CAGED System for learning chords using progressive diagrams and clear explanatory text that will help you discover more about how music works in a shorter time than you thought possible.

The app includes:

- Over 300 pages of detailed explanation on how chords work and how you can see them easily on the fretboard with the CAGED system
- 198 interactive chord charts so you can see and hear how each chord is constructed. View note names, intervals and fingerings and strum the chord chart with your finger to hear the individual notes

David Mead is an acoustic guitarist, writer, journalist and teacher. Find out more about David, his music and his best-selling guitar books at www.DavidMead.net.

What’s New

Version 1.1.0

This update fixes app compatibility with iOS 11

Ratings and Reviews

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App Privacy

The developer, Leafcutter Studios Ltd, has not provided details about its privacy practices and handling of data to Apple.

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The developer will be required to provide privacy details when they submit their next app update.


Leafcutter Studios Ltd
187.5 MB

Requires iOS 6.0 or later. Compatible with iPad.



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  • Family Sharing

    Up to six family members will be able to use this app with Family Sharing enabled.

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