Discussion in 'Performing Arts' started by gottssunfire, Jan 2, 2005.
ow does my finger hurt, but I just got my first good sounding barre cord out of my acoustic guitar.
Keep up the good work.. IF you can do it on acoustic it will be simple on electric..
Depends on what the size of your neck is and how your action is set, but, yes, generally easier on electric than acoustic. I sometimes have fun playing things like an F# chords instead of a G for a change. I don't do full barre chords, often. Partial... I'm developing my likings for barres and powerchords. They used to disgust me, but I'm learning to work it in with my technique and maneuver around my normal playing.
yay,that took me ages just to do the F chord
Once you get your basic major chords down, work your way to minors, 7ths, etc... afterwards, you'll have enough basics for the moment, start improvising a lot, then work around pentatonic scales. While doing that, do hand exercises or get some grips or rubber balls and such... stretches. I can go five frets or so easy.
I used to hate doing bar chords on my acoustic when i first started out, but once you practice it enough its rather easy.
I dont really use bar chords a whole lot anymore actually, i tend to extend my thumb for the E string, then i have alot more room to finish off the chord, or improvise. Of course you can always just play parts of the chords and it will can still sound alright. Just dont break your hand
Yeah... that's what I do. Partial barres.
Can you play like bm and F and stuff?
congrats! soon you'll be nailing all of those chords.
yup. someone told me barres were the next step, and that I shouldn't worry about 7ths and suspended chords until i could barre. Lying fuckers.
If someone said that, they're an idiot to make you do that because you should just do what's easiest... I learned fourths and sevenths on my own before. If you're going to do a Bm, start with just xxx432, and it will feel a lot less awkward when you use your index to barre.... you should listen to Neil Young's powderfinger and learn it, that's a fairly easy song to practice barring on... I play my chords a lot differently than some people do...
At the risk of alienating myself from the forums..
Um.. what exactly are barre chords?
Hey Chuck... just do an xxx432, and then lay your index finger across the second fret instead of making a chord. That's a B minor... barred.
I hardly ever attempted barre chords when I used to just play acoustic, probably the action was too high so I could never get a nice sound; but now I've got an electric, I use barre chords all the time! Time to throw that old capo away...well, not yet, it may still come in handy.
i kind of picked up barre chords in an evening.
when you can get your finger that's barring to stay on the fret well, it gets easier.
your fingers also get used to the strings and harden up at the tips... well slightly
Calloused, but that doesn't really have effect on barres, though.... most people have too high of an action to barre, I've noticed.
So... using a capo would be barre chord-ish?
Kind of... it just raises it up a steps depending on where you put it. I like to put it way high up on my Guild JF30 12 string and get nice mandolin sounds sometimes... but, I think you've kind of got the idea, capos are mechanically doing what your index finger is going when you're making a barre chord, if that's what you're asking...
And as far as action goes, that's the distance your strings are up off of the frets, for anyone who doesn't know the term. You raise or lower the action of your guitar by adjusting the saddle screws on a fender... but on a les paul, most of the time it's a lot less difficult as you don't use the screws on the actual bridge, but when you're changing strings, you can lower or raise it by adjusting the thumb screws that support the bridge. Of course, don't mess with the saddle screws for shifting it forward or backwards on les paul bridges (these are the screws with the springs on them on fenders) or else you'll screw up you intonation, unless you know what you're doing.
This measurement is usually taken at the last fret by measuring from the top of the fret to the bottom of the string. You can use a feeler gauge but using a simple mm rule is just as effective, in fact I don't use feeler gauges for anything Many times you will hear action measurements including a measurement at the 12th (or some other fret). Measuring at the 12th fret assumes every necks bow profile is the same and they never are. The bow profile of your neck will ultimately dictate the kind of setup that works best for it. (Bow is the amount of relief or "frontbow" the neck is dialed into, bow profile describes where the relief is) Some necks will show bow only from the 7th to the nut, some will show a very long smooth even bow throughout the whole neck, and many other profiles. I measure action at the 24th, but only to get a number to advise others, I would never setup a guitar with a mm rule, each guitar is unique and has it's own peculiarities...
Action is also dependent on fretboard radius, some will be 430mm, some 250mm, some in between. A 250mm radius fretboard requires higher action so the strings don't choke while making large bends. The flatter the board, the lower you can set the action without choking.
Playing style also can dictate how low, if you don't bend strings you can set it lower than someone who plays with lots of big bends. If you have a really heaving picking hand (or bad picking technique) your wound strings will give more buzz than somebody with a much lighter hand (or perfect technique). If you have a heavy pickhand you might need to raise the low side as high as 4mm to completely clean it up, again assuming clean fretwork and correct (for that neck) relief.
As a average and a starting point, on a 430mm 24 fret board, with around .4 - .5mm of relief measured at the 9th with the low E string fretted at the 1st and 24th, and set for light to medium pick hand with minimal low E buzz, measured at the 24th fret - 2mm on the wound E and 1.7mm on the high E. I will set it as low as buzz will allow on the wound side, and as low as bending will allow on the high side and still get full tone on big bends, assuming no problems with the fretwork or the bow profile. You can go lower on the high side but I also like to feel the string under my fingers and around 1.7 it's also keeping the action fairly even across the fret (high to low E). Action much higher on the wounds than on the unwounds is awkward and I prefer the balance.
On a 250mm radius board with .4 - .5mm of relief it's more like 2mm on the wound and 1.8 on the the high side. As low as you can get the high E with clean clear big bends. To get lower on the high side without choking under bends in the upper frets you will need less relief in the neck. There are many different ways to setup a guitar...
This is different on an acoustic. On acoustics, you file, trim, and sand the nut and the bridge, or you can raise it by putting something under it. If you're doing it to an acoustic, I advise using a clay shim underneath the saddle. This also helps if you have a piezo pickup installed. It takes the quack sound of it and you don't have to play with preamps and equalizers so much. I don't even use a preamp or a buffer on my Martin. I run it straight into the amp, clean...
Of course, most people don't really need to worry about that clay shim thing unless they know what I'm talking about, if so, I can send you some sites/videos on how to do this. As far as action goes, unless you'd like me to teach you, I advise you just take it to a luthier or a guitar technician if you need you action adjusted. I've seen many beginners who quit playing because they think it's to hard to play and their fingers aren't calloused as they don't play enough for callouses to form and they actually give up playing because they don't know enough about action, intonation, strings, tuning etc... just a few little technicalities...
Glad to help or answer any questions...
Your action is how high off your frets the strings are raised. A high action is good for making your fingers hurt... and slide guitar. So lower action is good if you don't play slide, but too low and your strings buzz.
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