Watch the G to Am Chord Connection online guitar lesson by Brad Carlton from Guitar Lab: Vertical Soloing
Measures 2 and 3, 6 and 7 of our 8 bar progression consist of the chord connection G to Am. These two chords are the V and vi chords in the key of C. The arpeggios for these two chords are as follows: the D form of the CAGED system of the G chord and the Em form of the EDCAG system for the Am chord. Both of these arpeggios reside in V position. The chord spellings are G (1), B (3) and D (5) for the G chord; A (1), C (b3) and E (5) for the Am chord. I'll demonstrate soloing using just the arpeggios, then blending the A minor pentatonic scale in for a rock/blues vibe. Next I'll apply the modes to each of these chords. For the G, play G mixolydian (mode V of C major). For the Am, play A aeolian (mode vi of C major). I'll explain the sensitive or weak tones for each mode. The 4 (C) of the G mixolydian mode will clash with the 3 (B) in the G chord. Listen to how I use the 4 in a resolving move to the 3 or 5. The b6 (F) of the A aeolian mode is also a sensitive tone. It tends to resolve down to the 5 (E) or up to the b7 (G).