I have large fingertips and when i started playing i had the same problem with open chords like D and A.
I learned to barre them. I am what some people refer to as "double-jointed" (no such thing) but my fingers bend a bit more than others i guess so it was easier for me to use one finger (middle) to barre the 3 strings then to shove my fat fingertips into the space.
i also learned to barre the open D with my index finger A-F# (2nd fret) and my ring finger to fret the D (3rd fret) at first i used my middle finger to support the barre.
i learned this largely because i was impatient and the songs i needed to learn all had open A and D.
eventually tho you need to learn to do it other ways also. i did find that barreing(sp?) open chords like this sped up my ability to use A shape barre chords tho.
Timely post for me. I've just started trying out some songs that use the A chord. I've got reasonably large fingers so I've been finding it relatively difficult.
I've been trying to form the chord as suggested by David Hodge in one of his lessons: index on G, middle on D and ring on B. This seems to work okay though I have to cram the fingers in a bit.
Thought of trying it with middle, ring and pinky in this formation but haven't had a lot of luck. Maybe middle on D, ring on G and pinky on D. That doesn't seem too bad but maybe it's bad form.
I'm sure some of our more experience fellows will shed some light on this. :)
From little things big things grow - Paul Kelly
I too have fairly large fingers, so I have been able to fret the 3 strings of the A chord with just 2 fingers. I use my middle and ring fingers.
I wanted to learn to play guitar really badly and I think that I have succeeded.
i also had lots of trouble with that A chord but the index on the G middle on the D and ring on the B works well for me . but it took quit a bit of pratice be fore i could get them to ring sweet.. give it a shot
Cash is cool
Most of the time I play the A by barring strings 1, 2, 3, and 4 at the second fret. I only use three fingers when the music demands that I let the open E on the first string ring out. It's much easier to play that way.
Well we all shine on--like the moon and the stars and the sun.
-- John Lennon
the open A I assume.
my fingers are on the end of my working hands. they are beat up and not thin.
I notice that when I make an A I use my index, middle and ring finger. since there is hardly enough roon my index finger is quite a distance from th fret. it almost rests against the first fret.
still, my A sounds great. no buzz or muffled strings.
remember, you dont fret on top the fret wire. and you actually have a bit of room behind the fret.
so let your fingers find that comfortable(somewhat) spacing.
it will come in time.
I too have fairly large fingers, so I have been able to fret the 3 strings of the A chord with just 2 fingers. I use my middle and ring fingers. You just angle your fingers a little and you can get all three strings fretted.
I use the same method as billbenbob although for a different reason. My first guitar had a fairly small nut width and I had trouble. My new guitar doesn't have this problem and I sometimes use the three finger method.
This is the ultimate solution to all your problems -
I use my middle and ring fingers. You just angle your fingers a little and you can get all three strings fretted.
I do it like Max. When I first started playing, I would just barre it with my ring finger, the same way you play a major chord on the 5th string. Then I figured out that my i,r & m fingers would fit if I "staggered them," meaning the index finger is almost touching the 1st fret wire, the middle is right in the middle of the 2nd fret with the same distance to the 1st and 2nd fret wire and the ring finger is almost on the 2nd fret wire. I have seen some players with some pretty meaty hands get all three fingers in there - give it a try!
Uh ..mike your avatar almost made me believe that paul replied here..(the creater of this website if you don't know ..)
Now we are in going to have some serious first look confusion if both of you keep posting...Anyways Happy Avataring
Sorry about the confusion, Rahul. If someone can tell me how to upload my own avatar from my PC, I would be able to change it.
Hey ...i never meant to force you to change your avatar...i was only saying in a light funny way..infact its cool to have the same ones..And now you are deemed to be our 'mighty , his highness' Paul Hackett
Actually, I would prefer to change it to an avatar I use on another board. But, there doesn't appear to be a way to upload it.
Not to derail this thread too much but click the profile link at the very top of the page, scroll down to the bottom of the next page to the avatar thing. You will need to find internet hosting to use your custom avatar, then enter the url where it is located in the box.
edit: For the record, I learned the crooked way at first. Middle-D, Index-G, Ring-B. I used this for about a year. Ok, so it does make changing from D to A to E very very easy...but I don't like it so much. I am trying to learn the more common Index-D Middle-G Ring-B now. I guess it's kind of situational. The crooked way is pretty good if you are in the key of A.