Ready to try your hand at the Fm ukulele chord?
If you’ve got a few open chords under your belt, then you should be able to pick this one up too. It is recommended that you focus on easier chords (like C, D, F, G, and A) first and foremost, but it’s always good to push yourself and take things to the next level too.
In this guide, we’ll show you exactly how to play the F minor chord on your ukulele.
How To Play The Fm Chord
The Fm chord is a “three-finger chord,” meaning it requires just three fingers to play – index, middle, and pinky (though you can use your ring finger in place of the pinky if you don’t mind the stretch).
The Fm chord shape can be formed as follows – place your index finger on the first fret of the fourth string, your middle finger on the first fret of the second string, and your pinky on the third fret of the first string.
The Fm chord is made up of the F, Ab, and C notes. So, the open C string works to our advantage here. It’s okay to double up on notes with chord shapes. We just need to make sure there are three distinct notes.
Some ukulele players can pick up the Fm chord relatively quickly, but I’m not going to beat around the bush – if you’re still a newbie, this chord can be a tough one to get right.
The fingering is the first issue. The stretch to the third fret on the first string will feel weird when your index and middle finger are both sitting in the same fret (the first fret).
Once you get the fingering down, you’ve still got to look out for muted / dead notes. Assuming you’re applying the right amount of pressure, you should not experience any issues with your index (fourth string) or pinky (first string).
The third string is an easy one to mute if your index finger isn’t arched / curled enough.
You’ll also want to look out for the second string. This one is less troublesome, but you could end up muting it with your pinky if you aren’t careful.
To ensure every note is ringing out clearly, be sure to pick the notes out of the chord one at a time (don’t just strum it). Sometimes you can’t tell without picking each note individually.
Also, practice making and breaking the chord plenty. Or work on transitioning to other chords. Either way, merely holding the chord shape and strumming a bunch of times will not amount to practice let alone improvement.
What Is The Fm (F Minor) Chord?
Even though the Fm chord is not a barre chord, it may well be the hardest open chord to play on the uke.
Generally, there are two observations worth making about the Fm chord.
The first is that it’s an open chord. Open chords always contain open strings / open notes that are meant to be strummed along with all the other strings.
An open chord is the easiest type of chord to play, but three-finger open chords are the hardest given that there are also one- and two-finger open chords (you can also play C6 and Am7 without fretting any notes!).
The second is that Fm is a minor chord. Minor chords show up in songs that are in both major and minor keys and everything in between. On their own, they have an incomplete quality to them. You could also say they have a sad or dark quality to them.
The Fm chord shows up most commonly in songs that are in the keys of Fm or Ab. These aren’t ukulele friendly keys and may require you to learn other unusual chord shapes or barre chords unless you use a capo.
We look at several songs that feature the Fm chord prominently below.
What Songs Use The Fm Chord?
At the end of the day, there are a surprising number of famous songs in the keys of Ab and Fm. Here are several you’re sure to have a lot of fun with.
“Telephone” by Lady Gaga ft. Beyoncé
What do you get when you put Lady Gaga and Beyoncé together? Predictably, you get a big hit!
Released at the end of the 2000s, “Telephone” picked up multiple awards, such as the MTV Video Music Award for Best Collaboration, and it has the honor of being rearranged and covered by Pomplamoose too (doing what they do best).
In the video version, you will learn to play the song with a capo on the first fret. This puts the song in the proper key but eliminates the necessity to learn additional in-key chords.
Our suggestion would be to learn it both ways – first, learn to play it with a capo. Then, try it without a capo to see if you can figure out what the chords are.
“Boulevard of Broken Dreams” by Green Day
The slow and somber “Boulevard of Broken Dreams” was quite possibly one of Green Day’s most pop-rock oriented tunes up to its release (they’ve since added more pop oriented material to their musical catalog).
There’s nothing fancy about it – it’s primarily made up of the same four chords most pop songs are made up of.
The original obviously utilizes a capo, but you’re going to get more mileage out of this by practicing it in the original key, and the video above will show you, step by step, how to play it in the original key of Fm.
“One More Night” by Maroon 5
Did you know that Maroon 5’s “One More Night” was little more than a three-chord wonder? Sure, it sounds more complicated when you listen to the high-production original, but it has a laid-back reggae vibe that’s easy to duplicate and is perfectly suited to the ukulele.
The hardest part about it is that it’s in the key of Fm. The video above will walk you through the paces, though, so there’s nothing to get too worked up about. Take your time and practice lots.
Once you learn how to play it, you will probably grow tired of the song relatively quickly!
Fm Ukulele Chord, Final Thoughts
Chords are a matter of muscle memory. So, don’t worry about trying to memorize everything, even as your chord vocabulary continues to increase. In time, you will be able to read the chords off a lead sheet like a pro.
Focus instead on repetition. The best way to improve at something is to a) ensure you’re using the right technique, and b) repeat it until you’ve mastered it.
And most of all, remember to enjoy the process!