9 Essential Rockabilly Guitar Chords...

Courtesy of Total Guitar.com

Give your rhythm playing an authentic rockabilly vibe with these nine essential must-learn chords… 

Generally, rockabilly makes heavy use of the well-known I-IV-V blues progression. In the key of E the chords are E-A-B; in the key of A it's A-D-E, and 6th, 7th and 9th versions of these major chords (such as E6, B9 and so on) give a more authentic sound.

Try improvising around A6, D9 and E7, using the "A Major Pentatonic" scale. Add in a chromatic passing tone of the lowered 3rd (b3), for a more typical rockabilly sound. The  I-IV-V in the key of A is great place to begin since it is so popular within this style.

***Notice that there are shapes that are marked as 'for lead' because they are great for country and rockabilly style soloing, particularly if you use the trick of pulling off to the open second string. That said, you can treat them as standard chords if you prefer. It's up to you.

9 Rockabilly Chords: