Once you have found some neat chord alterations, start using
them whenver you have the standard D, G, A, C chords, etc. in a song. Figure out
where they fit and where they don't.
Another way to add color to your songs is by finding a key where
you can exploit the open strings to work for you. What do I mean by this?
Well, a standard-tuned guitar has four strings that ring notes native to the key of E
major: E, A, B, and E. For those theory wizzes out there, that's I, IV, V, and I--
the standard rock progression! You can use these open strings to your
advantage by playing the chords somewhere else on the guitar, yet leaving a few of
these strings open! Let's try it:
And with A:
And here are a few B's: