How to learn tons of chords really fast.
!This article will discuss a simple concept of how chords are
manipulated on the guitar. Many players who are unaware
of this concept will constantly wonder how certain
players can learn so many chords. I’ll tell you right now
they aren’t actually memorizing many dierent chords.
I’ll talk more about this in a moment. First, we must
address the issue of tuning.#
! I’m sure many of you are aware that the guitar is
turned E A D G B E. The reason it’s been done this way
is simply “because it’s always been that way.” It tends to
be easier to finger chords that are used primarily on the
guitar. Without going into too much detail that would go
way over your head I’ll leave it at that.#
! Now, with that out of the way, let me first address the actual point
of this article that peaked your interest. I will be taking everything here from the
perspective that you are playing your guitar in E standard or some form of standard (Eb
standard, for instance Eb Ab Db Gb Bb Eb). Using a basic power chord shape, I want
you to notice the following:#
! What do you notice about this picture?
The power chord o the E string and A
string are the same. #
! Now what if I told you that all 4 chords
are exactly the same shape? You would
probably say, no they’re not. The top two
are dierent.#
! Technically, they have dierent
fingerings, but they are the same shape.
What happens to the chords on the D and G string is that they are manipulated
because they have strings that fall on the B string.#
! On the guitar all the strings are separated by a Perfect 4th. Meaning E to A has 5
notes between it (F F# G G# A), A to D has 5 notes between it ( A# B C C# D) D to G
has 5 notes between it ( D# E F F# G) and the B string to E string has 5 notes between
it ( C C# D D# E) . However, the G string to the B string is only separated by a Major
Third and only has 4 notes between it. (G# A A# B). Since G to B is separated by only a
major third instead of a 4th, everything on the B string shifts up one fret. #
Now, look again at the picture above and see what happened to the 355 shape when it
reached the B string. The note on the B string shifts up one fret, so the 355 chord
becomes 356#
! Now let’s look at the more bizarre looking 366 chord that starts on the G string.
How does it follow this pattern. As I wrote up above between the B string and the E
string is a perfect 4th (5 note dierence) like all the other strings. What happens for
chords that start on the B strings? Any note on the B string still needs to be moved up
1 fret. So the start of the chord that was 35 becomes 36. Then the B string and the E
string are still a perfect 4th apart like every other string, so they must maintain their
normal relationship.#
! For those that find this dicult to understand I will restate it in a dierent way. If
we look at the original power chord the 355,otice how the last two strings are 55. They
are stacked on top of each other. The chord that starts on the G string is 66. Meaning
the relationship between the two top notes stays the same. Only the note on the B
string shifts. #
! his can be a hard concept to grasp at first, so you may need to read this article
multiple times to grasp the full concept. Make sure you play the chords on the example
up above, as doing so will help you fully grasp the concept.#
————About The Author#
Chris Glyde is an inspired teacher who loves showing his guitar lesson students the
little changes in their playing that can make all the dierence. #