9 Easy Guitar Songs You Can Play Right Away

If you are just beginning to learn to play guitar or even if you have been doing it for a while, nothing will inspire you to play more than knowing how to play some actual songs.

Even veteran guitarists who find themselves stuck in a rut can get inspiration from adding some new songs to their repertoire. 

And you may be surprised how simple some of the most popular songs can be. 

That’s probably because a lot of big hits tend to rely on chord progressions that are tried and true.

So sometimes the old adage of “less is more” is relevant here. 

These songs have been chosen because of their easy level of difficulty, but here are some guidelines to keep in mind for most of them.

  • You should know how to play open major chords and barre chord shapes for major and minor chords with the root on the 6th or 5th string.
  • There won’t be a lot of complicated 7th, sus, etc. chords, but you should be comfortable using your pinky finger. For example, fretting the 3rd fret on the 1st string while playing a D chord to get Dsus4. 
  • The chords will be provided but it’s up to you to listen to the song and figure out the timing. This is good practice for trying to figure out how to play songs on your own later.
  • Some songs may be better played with your fingers than with a guitar pic. You can skip the songs if you want, but it’s a good skill to learn. 
  • I usually fret the B string at the 3rd fret when playing a G chord. It sounds a little different and will make switching to a D chord much easier when you get used to it. Try it out!

And even better, whether you have an acoustic or electric guitar shouldn’t matter for these songs!

1. Blowin’ in the Wind – Bob Dylan

If you’re tired of Kumbaya, you can feed your inner hippie with this classic guitar song that is great for beginners. It’s easy to sing too.

For the verse your chords will go like this:




And the chorus:

C-D-G-Em-C-D-G   x 2

That’s it!

  • Written by: Bob Dylan
  • Year Released: 1963
  • Album: The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan

2. When I Come Around – Green Day

This song uses a very popular chord progression and it’s easy to learn.

But learning the strumming method of playing mostly the bass note on the first few downstrokes may take a few tries for beginners. 

Here is the verse:


And the chorus goes like this:


And then back to the verse chords.

Punk Rock songs are pretty easy, huh? And once you are comfortable with this one, you will also be able to learn songs like Glycerine by Bush and Take On Me by A-ha pretty quickly too. 

  • Written by: Green Day
  • Year Released: 1994
  • Album: Dookie

3. Wild Thing – The Troggs

This old song is simple, catchy, and can sound great with a little bit of distortion. 

This or Louie Louie by the Kingsmen can also be useful as a first song if you’re trying to start a band.

The verse goes like this:

A-D-E-D   x 3


And the chorus:

G-A-G-A   x 4

  • Written by: Chip Taylor
  • Year Released: 1966
  • Album: Wild Thing (single)

4. Who Will Save Your Soul – Jewel

This song is built around only 4 chords and it is a good introduction to fingerpicking.

The chords for the song are:


There is a little more to it than that though.

For Am, you first play the 2nd string open and then at the 1st fret.

For C, you first play the 2nd string at the 3rd fret and then at the 1st fret.

G is played normally

For D, you first play the 1st string at the 3rd fret and then at the 2nd fret.

Just listen to the song a few times and you should hear the picking pattern.

  • Written by: Jewel Kilcher
  • Year Released: 1995
  • Album: Pieces of You

5. Take It on the Run – REO Speedwagon

This is a classic Rock hit that most people will know.

And there are one 7th chord and one 9th chord here but don’t worry because they are easy to learn. 

C7 is played like a regular C chord but you fret the 3rd string at the 3rd fret with your pinky finger.

A9 is played like a regular A chord but the 2nd string is played open.

Here is the verse: 


And the chorus goes like this: 



  • Written by: Gary Richrath
  • Year Released: 1980
  • Album: Hi Infidelity

6. Teardrops on My Guitar – Taylor Swift

This early Taylor Swift song can be played with a capo on the 3rd fret but you can just adjust your voice if you don’t have a capo.

Here are the chords for the verse:

G-Em-C-D   x 2


And the chorus uses the same chords in a different order:

G-D-Em-C   x 2

And the final chord progression of the song is (end on G):


  • Written by: Taylor Swift and Liz Rose
  • Year Released: 2006
  • Album: Taylor Swift

7. What I Got – Sublime

This whole song is based on two chords: D(5) and G but I usually play it with a regular D chord.

And you don’t have to get the fingerpicking notes perfect to make it sound good. 

You can just play around with it to get the feel of the rhythm and you should be good to go. 

If you’re feeling ready to take the next step, you can try to figure out some of the licks or improvise your own. 

  • Written by: Half Pint, Eric Wilson, Bud Gaugh, and Bradley Nowell
  • Year Released: 1996
  • Album: Sublime

8. Wild Horses – The Rolling Stones

This incredible Classic Rock track has a few more chords than the previous songs but trust me, the result is worth it.

The intro:


And the verse goes like this. 


Am-C-D-G-D-C   x 2 (both lines)

The chorus is similar to the second progression of the verse with minor changes:



There are some little bridge parts in the song that I don’t worry about and you can probably ignore them unless you’re going to perform the song live.

End the song on a G chord and that’s it!

  • Written by: Mick Jagger and Keith Richards
  • Year Released: 1971
  • Album: Sticky Fingers

9. Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door – Guns N’ Roses

We’ll come full circle with another song by Bob Dylan, but this time performed in a heavier style by Guns N’ Roses.

This song uses an Am7 chord which is Am with the 3rd string played open (remove your ring finger).

And this song is easy as pie.





G-D-C   x 2 (both lines

And the chorus is just repetitions of:


This should be good enough for some fun on an acoustic but the solos are obviously for advanced players!

  • Written by: Bob Dylan
  • Year Released: 1990 / 1991
  • Album: Days of Thunder (film soundtrack) and Use Your Illusion II