Cheat Sheet

Ukulele For Dummies

From Ukulele For Dummies, 2nd Edition by Alistair Wood

To enable you to translate music on the page into music that you play on your ukulele, chord diagrams and tablature – or ‘tab’ – help to make life easier. This Cheat Sheet explains these handy helpers and serves up a selection of the chords you’re most likely to use when playing your uke.

Relating Chord Diagrams and Tab to the Ukulele

You don’t need to be able to read music in order to play the ukulele. Chord diagrams and tab enable you to play just by looking at the pictures.

Chord diagrams for the ukulele

The grid represents the first five frets of the ukulele as if the uke is standing vertically. The chord name is written at the top, the dots show where to put your fingers and the number at the bottom shows you which finger to use.


Ukulele tab

The four lines represent the strings as if the ukulele is facing you – that is, the g-string at the bottom and the A-string at the top. The numbers show the fret to play. You read from left to right and you play the notes shown above each other at the same time.


Getting to Know Chord Families on the Ukulele

Chords are blocks of notes that you play together, and are the perfect place to start learning to play music on your ukulele. Here are the most common ukulele chords divided into chord families.

C chord family


D chord family


F chord family


G chord family


A chord family


Bb chord family

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