Skip to content
Notifications
Clear all

chord transitions

8 Posts
7 Users
0 Likes
1,425 Views
markthechuck
(@markthechuck)
Reputable Member
Joined: 15 years ago
Posts: 169
Topic starter  

:D Hi all, Do you have any tips for better chord transitions, i know where chords are but transitions make my song playing sometimes sound a bit rubbish, i've only been playing for 7 weeks and really struggle with bar chords too..All help welcome please..

A knock back is the beginning of a comeback!!!


   
Quote
Scrybe
(@scrybe)
Famed Member
Joined: 15 years ago
Posts: 2241
 

one tip I'd give is to warm up before attempting bar chords, especially if you're new to playing guitar. play some open position chords for a few minutes first before moving on to bar chords, it'll give your fingers a chance to loosen up. also, if the weather is as bitterly cold as it is over here at the moment, I'd suggest warming your hands up before playing (i.e. make sure you're in a warm room, rub your hands a bit, wear gloves if travelling to a lesson/whatever).

I'd also suggest investing in a metronome (you can get free ones on the net, there's a widget for Mac computers you can download from the apple site, or just google 'freeware metronome' or similar if you're on a PC). use that when practising changing between chords, playing one chord per four beats (or per 8 beats, if you want). if you are having trouble playing the chord on every beat when it comes to changing to a new chord, set the metronome to a lower speed and try again. starting from a lower speed then gradually increasing it will mean you'll play with better technique and will eventually play competently at faster speeds than not practising with a metronome.

hth

Ra Er Ga.

Ninjazz have SuperChops.

http://www.blipfoto.com/Scrybe


   
ReplyQuote
Dagwood
(@dagwood)
Noble Member
Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 1024
 

:D Hi all, Do you have any tips for better chord transitions, i know where chords are but transitions make my song playing sometimes sound a bit rubbish, i've only been playing for 7 weeks and really struggle with bar chords too..All help welcome please..
Sometimes, well a lot of times, a 'ghost' strum in between chords are perfectly OK.

So lets say your playing something like: Em > G > A > Am as an example.

Do a few strums on the first chord, then do a light strum on all open strings when switching to the G Chord etc. I see a lot of guys do this and I do it myself. Nothing wrong with it (Song appropriate). It helps keeping the rhythm or strumming pattern going so you don't lose the timing.

I used to practice this I'd do quarter note strums on 4/4 timing. The first three on the Em Chord, the fourth beat would be the 'ghost' strum, then the first beat of the next bar would be the G Chord and so on.

No worries, you will get it, just keep at it.

Research is what I'm doing when I don't know what I'm doing. - Wernher Von Braun (1912-1977)


   
ReplyQuote
pab
 pab
(@pab)
Estimable Member
Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 103
 

7 weeks is so small a time that if you indicated that you had smooth chord transitions and were able to do barre chords, i would consider that amazing.

I just hit the 11 month time and practice anywhere between 1 to 2 hours a day. i still cannot do some barre chords, and executing them in rhythm is very difficult for me. some chord changes still give me problems and i think some will continue even in the future.

although with 7 weeks time you probably are not doing any fingerpicking, the best advice i can give you is that if you start doing fingerpicking, you don't need (and really shouldn't) put all chord fingers down at once. you put the finger down that is on the string that is played first, and so on. it buys you some time.

in strumming, if you are doing a boom chuck type strum, again you want to place the bass string finger down first and then worry about the next fingers, again buying time. and when you are trying to learn how to do this, you will run into problems with finger independence (2 or more fingers will want to move at the same time rather than moving 1 while keeping others stationary). this is normal and will improve with practice. there are exercises that help with this, particularily in pumping nylon, but i certainly wouldn't recommend that for someone with less than 2 months under their belt (i started at about 6 months).

hope this helps.

pab


   
ReplyQuote
Classico
(@classico)
Estimable Member
Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 65
 

i think you should consider doing some barre thecnique stuff for the bar chords, ten minutes a day and in a month you don't even notice that the chord is barred 8)
also, try finding the notes that stay for both chords and don't lift all of your fingers when you change between them them. for exmple try playing: Am>C
notice how the E and C notes appear in both chords? all you have to do is switch your 3rd finger from the C note (third fret 4th string) to the A note (second fret of the 3rd string) and you've switched chords :D
try and find more of these similarities between chords and use them to play smoother transitions 8)


   
ReplyQuote
dogbite
(@dogbite)
Illustrious Member
Joined: 18 years ago
Posts: 6348
 

i think you should consider doing some barre thecnique stuff for the bar chords, ten minutes a day and in a month you don't even notice that the chord is barred 8)
also, try finding the notes that stay for both chords and don't lift all of your fingers when you change between them them. for exmple try playing: Am>C
notice how the E and C notes appear in both chords? all you have to do is switch your 3rd finger from the C note (third fret 4th string) to the A note (second fret of the 3rd string) and you've switched chords :D
try and find more of these similarities between chords and use them to play smoother transitions 8)

right on. 8)
that is how I got the hang of so long a go.
many great rhythm based guitarists, like Pete Townsend, let the open strings sound as the fingers change position.
learning chord changes and rhythm makes sense too.
another cool thing is moving an open chord shape . try moving a C7 open chord shape up the neck. things happen.
the main thing is to practice and have fun too. eventually you will be thinking four chords ahead of what you're actually playing.
true.

http://www.soundclick.com/bands/pagemusic.cfm?bandID=644552
http://www.soundclick.com/couleerockinvaders


   
ReplyQuote
Scrybe
(@scrybe)
Famed Member
Joined: 15 years ago
Posts: 2241
 

I'll see that post, and raise it, lol......

you can also, depending on the tune, throw in a muted strum between two chords, allowing your fretting hand to take a little break resting against the strings to deaden them. this works best in funky stuff and blues, but elsewhere too. hendrix does it a lot, esp. in extended jams on blues tunes, if you hear a 'chicky chiky chiky' kind of sound on a hendrix album there's a chance he's muting the strings and strumming them. the song Machine Gun is one featuring this technique which springs to mind. it also works if you, um, forget the chord progression midway through a jam (I've never done that! honest!!), or if you have to move your hand a fair distance between two chords.

Ra Er Ga.

Ninjazz have SuperChops.

http://www.blipfoto.com/Scrybe


   
ReplyQuote
Steppenfreak
(@steppenfreak)
Active Member
Joined: 15 years ago
Posts: 9
 

A basic chord-changing exercise I try and keep up every time I play is to strum on one chord a few times and then move to another one, keeping up the rhythm. I had a LOT of difficulty with changing from a G to a C, so I just kept strumming, regardless of whether I managed to hit the right chord straight away or not (there's a really useful lesson on here somewhere that helped me with changing chords.. I'll just hunt it down for you.. Ah, here we go: https://www.guitarnoise.com/lessons/mastering-chord-changes/ ) To start off, though, and get the hang of changing quickly, I started with changing from Em to A and back again.. You can also use E and Am, too, as these chords are really simple and are great for a bit of easy practice (I still use Em and A to strengthen my left pinky. Instead of using my middle and ring fingers to hold the strings down - and my index finger on the A - I use my ring and pinky - and middle for the A ;) Hope something here helps (and I made some sort of sense!) =)

But anyhoo.. that advice about strumming open strings inbetween transitions is a very good idea.. Now I have to try it out! Thanks! :mrgreen:

***All You Need Is Love***


   
ReplyQuote