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fingers dont fit

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EEEEEE
(@eeeeee)
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Joined: 13 years ago
Posts: 6
Topic starter  

Just started playing the guitar...again. I'm sure this isnt a new topic but, how long before I can play a chord without my fingers touching strings that I dont want them to? Help a brother out before I put the guitar down again for another six months.


   
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Blue Jay
(@blue-jay)
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Joined: 14 years ago
Posts: 1630
 

Welcome! We have the answers. 8)

Like a bird on the wire,
like a drunk in a midnight choir
I have tried in my way to be free.


   
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Ricochet
(@ricochet)
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Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 7833
 

It'll come. The fingertips hardening up with callouses and learning not to press down too hard with them will help a lot.

Or you could do what I did and pretty much completely switch to playing with a slide.

"A cheerful heart is good medicine."


   
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Preacher
(@preacher)
Estimable Member
Joined: 14 years ago
Posts: 125
 

It'll come. The fingertips hardening up with callouses and learning not to press down too hard with them will help a lot.

Or you could do what I did and pretty much completely switch to playing with a slide.
lol I like Ric's answer. :D But itll come with time... hang in there

I play the guitar, I taught myself how to play the guitar, which was a bad decision... because I didn't know how to play it, so I was a sh***y teacher. I would never have went to me. -Mitch Hedberg


   
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EEEEEE
(@eeeeee)
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Joined: 13 years ago
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Topic starter  

Thanks guys. I'm gonna try to keep pluggin' away. MY goal is to play the chords to purple rain...hopefully within a year. I'll leave the solo to prince.


   
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TRGuitar
(@trguitar)
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Joined: 16 years ago
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Learning guitar is like learnig to ride a bike. You put in a lot of hard work and all of a sudden one day your like .... "Hey! I'm doing it!"

"Work hard, rock hard, eat hard, sleep hard,
grow big, wear glasses if you need 'em."
-- The Webb Wilder Credo --


   
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KareemSoda
(@kareemsoda)
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Joined: 13 years ago
Posts: 5
 

Oh man, I am suffering through the same problem myself. What really stinks is I just about have my first song down (Lola by The Kinks), but that damn B chord is a wrench in the machine.


   
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kingpatzer
(@kingpatzer)
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A mistake many beginners make when trying to learn new chords is trying to just learn the "whole" chord.

It's a lot easier, and quicker imho, to learn the chords in stages.

For example, if you're trying to learn to play the C major chord ( x 3 2 0 1 0) trying to get your fingers over all of those notes at once can be really hard. But you can start just playing the upper triad (x x x 0 1 0) and then once that is solid and clean, play the middle triad (x x 2 0 1 0). Then you can play the lower triad (x 3 2 0 x x ) and then finally put it all together (x 3 2 0 1 0).

You can do this with every chord, and it can really help.

Lastly, once you can any part of the chord cleanly, practice dropping your hand away from the fret board and then grabbing the chord all at once.

But ultimately, it comes down to spending the time learning to do it

"The music business is a cruel and shallow money trench, a long plastic hallway where thieves and pimps run free, and good men die like dogs. There's also a negative side." -- HST


   
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EEEEEE
(@eeeeee)
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Topic starter  

Thx for the support guys. KareemSoda, you're waaayyy ahead of me.Lol. I'm a book 1, page 1 beginner. Keep grinding bro, you'll get Lola. kingpatzer, I'm gonna try your method. Sounds like that might help alot. If this doesn't work, I'm pickin up the bass.


   
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dlouis688
(@dlouis688)
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Posts: 5
 

Hello! I think another mistake is to play chords that are difficult to switch to. For example, if you play A minor x0221x, practicing switching to a chord with a similar shape (Em or E major). Also, don't forget to play with the tips of your fingers. If you notice your joints are bending in weird ways, you're probably doing something wrong :) Lastly, pay attention to your wrist. It can easily be shifted towards the neck or away from the neck to change the angle that your fingers are hitting the strings at.

Hope that helps!


   
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Philtho
(@philtho)
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I'm as new as they come, and this is the one thing books, online sites, and most everywhere doesn't mention. Not even beginner DVDs or anything mention this. I thought my hands were deformed or something because my fingers kept touching other strings. In most beginner books you get to like page 2 and they say "Press these three strings for the G chord!" then page 3 shows you another chord, then page 4 they expect you to play a song.

Not a single resource mentions that playing a single chord for a beginner will be REALLY HARD. That it is perfectly normal to mess up by touching the wrong strings at first. And that if you just keep practicing it for a few days, a week or so, that your hands will eventually figure out on their own what not to touch as your tips harden.

I had no idea. The only way I found out was to post online like you did. It's normal, don't get frustrated, just keep practicing and you will have them down in a short amount of time! It took me like three days to finally get my fingers positioned right, my finger nails trimmed and sanded and my tips to harden enough to play a simple G chord. Now at a week later I can play it fine.

Now i'm struggling with changing chords quick enough to attempt to play a simple song. Like chords, practice and it should (hopefully) come easier and easier!


   
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EEEEEE
(@eeeeee)
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Topic starter  

Philtho, you're my dude! You're right...nowhere is it mentioned how tough it is to play clean notes & chords. This isn't gonna sound right, but reading how others have struggled at the beginning has helped. I'm just a couple weeks in but i can play a few songs in the book. I still stink but with you guys' tips & my own determination, I've gotta be a better guitar player in '10. Chords still next to impossible for me, but I'm willing to do the work. Thx to all for encouraging me.


   
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Philtho
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Yeah, I got my first guitar this Christmas. I've been practicing chords ever since and the first few days were so frustrating. I even got a book with close up pictures of how to do chords and I was convinced I was doing something wrong, or my hands were too fat. Some few days later, I woke up, picked up the guitar and was surprised to see a chord ring out fine. It's just practice and having the hands learn on their own I guess. Now I can look at any chord and play it fine at almost 3 weeks? I dont know them all by heart yet, but its coming to me slowly. I was able to play the intro to Wish You Were Here last night, which is the first time I've played ANYTHING that sounded coherent.

I'm diggin it all. It was just SO foreign starting out, now the ball is rolling and just need to push through anything that comes across as hard.


   
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kent_eh
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None of the books I looked at ever said "this is going to take a while to get it right. Be patient".

But that's the reality of it. Your fingers have spent all of your life not forming chords. It'll take some time and practice to re-train them.
Plus, if you are new to music in general, it'll also take some time to train your ears to know if you're doing it right.
And your sense of rhythm has to catch up.

Each of those 1-2 page lessons in the book is going to take at least a week of regular practice to get it down to a point where you can turn the page.

I wrapped a newspaper ’round my head
So I looked like I was deep


   
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EMT
 EMT
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what they said. believe me it'll work.

red meat doesn't kill you, fuzzy green meat does.


   
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