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What are your favorite 1,2, or 3 chord songs to use with your students? I teach middle school band and general music and offer guitar
instruction for the music classes and others after school. I'm always looking for familiar songs my kids will recognize and enjoy. Please share what works for your students. Thanks!

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I come from a bluegrass background. So songs like Groundhog, Wreck of the ole 97 (also known as "MTA" by Kingston Trio), Worried man blues are all part of my rep. and are just plain fun.
Alex, - I don't teach guitar however one of my favorite sites to download music from is . Once you load the website you'll see the list of
'genre's on the upper left. They do have a 'Beginners' section. The downloaded files are zipped so once you do the download, you'll have to unzip them to a folder. Also you'll need to download a free TablEdit viewer and the link to get it is toward the bottom left of Black Mack's website. Just download the viewer to the same folder as your unzipped songs. There are hundreds of songs located here so I'm sure you'll find something that you'll like. The TablEdit format is nice because if you don't know how a song goes, you can click on 'play' and it will play it for you. Also you can print the songs out and they print as sheet music. Most of the songs here are fingerstyle . Check it out and see if there is something there that you can use. - Bob
Thanks. I've been wondering the same thing.
My son's music teacher had his 3rd grade class playing "This Land is Your Land" by Woodie Guthrie on the recorder. I learned how to play it on guitar (key of G: G/C/D chords) to give him some accompaniment when practicing. I like the song because it works on so many levels. Go back and listen to Woodie singing it to see what I mean.

Another song that would probably work is "Jambalaya" by Hank Williams. It's easy to play, fun, and educational (French/Cajun words, use of "gay" in it's original meaning). I usually play it in C (C & G chords), but often I put a capo on the 3rd fret and play A and E instead.
I've done some teaching over the years and always try to sit w/ the student and find songs they like. I like to gear my teaching with using songs and music they're already big into. That's just my approach. I'm interested in what others may be doing as well.

That said, "House Of The Rising Sun" (as done by The Animals) comes to mind.

For something in about "stage 2" of learning, I cut my teeth on John Mellencamp's "Pink Houses". I'm sure there are 1000 newer songs that would serve the same goal as both of these.


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