Grumpy Coyote's Key/Chord 'n Jam/Songwriting Cheat Sheets...


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Jul 7, 2008
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I play ukes in three different tunings, guitars in at least two, and mando type things about three more.

That means when I sit down to write or worse step up on stage to sit in and someone calls a key - I need to scramble to remember not only what chords are in that key, but what chords shapes to make for whatever I happen to be holding at the time.

So I wrote these to help. If you need to write a chord progression or jam with a band in a particular key, these charts should help.

These also help with "nashville" or "number" notation. If someone tells you "It's just a I, IV, V, but we hold on the IV and flatten the iii on the bridge", you'll know what they are talking about. This is the main reason I tossed these together. The green shaded boxes are the basic I, IV, V of most blues/rock. The top line is the basics - the I-VII progressions, the second line are some handy alternate chords that fit and can help you mix things up.

I added Bb because that's the one horn players always call out and it makes me crazy. The rest are just the majors, flattening them should be pretty easy under most circumstances.

The chord shapes are generally what I consider "first position" chords, they should do to learn the basics or fake your way through a jam.

Happy to make changes if you see any mistakes (I'm sure there are some). I'm not a graphic designer - open to suggestions there too.

Let me know if they help. Embedded as jpg files. I have them as powerpoint slides if you want them. The JPG files are hosted over at if you want 'em.

First, the charts and nashville notation in one sheet, then the chord shapes per key, two images per post. Here we go.
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thanks a lot for those!
Supa mahalos to you Grumpy!!!! That was great!!!
Geez. You just make it harder and harder for me to come up with legit excuses to get out of jam sessions, Grumpy. Now I have to fall back on the lame ol' "shyness" excuse.

Seriously, though, this is terrific. Thanks so much!
man, I wish I could print this entire thread, this is awesome and would really help me out at UWC, thanks Grumps!!

EDIT: Nevermind, I just saw that theyre on photobucket. I'm pretty sure I can print them from there!!
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These are GREAT! Coming from a guitar background, this helps things make sense.
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