A slash chord is a guitar chord which uses an alternate bass note for the chord. Typically a chord is composed of the root note (or tonic) and the third and fifth. A slash chord substitutes/augments the root with another bass note, which can be just about anything. The purpose of this is to liven up the sound a bit, and to make it easier for one chord to lead to another by using a bass note that leads to another note better than the tonic.

A slash chord is notated as X/Y where X is the chord and Y is the alternate bass note. A fairly common example is a C/G. A C chord is played as x32010. If we substitute the tonic (a C) with a G, we get 332010. Note that in this case we do not actually get rid of the original tonic, we simply add a lower bass note, in this case, a G. In other situations, you may end up not playing the tonic note at all.

Slash chords which use a note that is a part of the main chord as the bass note are called inversions. Common open slash chords are:

A/E:  002220
C/E:  032010 or XX2010
C/G:  332010
D/A:  X00232
D/E:  0X0232
D/F#: 200232
E/G#: 4XX454 - weak
F/C:  X33211
F/G:  XXX011 or 120011 if you are elastic enough
G/B:  X20003

5-string pattern for third in bass:

Find the bass note (third), bar two frets lower, play X20003 (where 0 is your finger) or X2000X. For a funky (but incorrect) sound, play X20000 which is strictly G6/B (or transposition thereof).

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