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If I quit blame the D Chord!

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(@redneckrocker)
Estimable Member
Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 174
 

Mike don't give up!! I think it's already been said, but just leave it alone for a little while. This has helped me several times, if you get to frustrated your not going to get it anyway. Put down the guitar for a day or two or three, listen to some classical music (seriously!). I like Bach's Goldberg Variations played on guitar by Kurt Rodarmer(sp?) myself. I know that sounds funny, and all my buddies laugh at me b/c I am a rock guy myself but it is relaxing.

It seems to me that you are progressing quickly, probably faster than I am so you obviously have some talent. Don't Give Up!

A friend told me one time that learning guitar is 50% practise/50%talent. Imagine guitar playing as a percentage with 0 being can't play an Em chord and 100 being Steve Vai, or SRV or your fav. guitarist. Even if you have 0 talent you can be good enough with practise to play with anybody. If you have some talent, well that just makes you that much better of a player, BUT only after the work has been put in.

Sorry for the long post and if it doesn't make any sense I am not good at writing down the ideas in my mind.

P.S. I am still a newb myself so any advice should be taken with a grain of salt.

~Mike the Redneck Rocker.

"The only two things in life that make it worth living are guitars that tune good and firm feeling women" - Waylon


   
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(@jimscafe)
Estimable Member
Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 119
 

I had the same problem with the D chord and the same frustration because it was supposed to be easy.

I changed to using a small barre on the top three strings second fret and using my ring finger for the third fret B string. For simple songs that worked fine and by the time I needed to use a different fingering I had more experience changing chords and it wasn't so bad.

So I just used my first and ring finger for a while (except I am a lefty and it isn't my ring finger!) :shock:


   
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(@chris-c)
Famed Member
Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 3454
 

Hi Mike,

As NoteBoat points out here, practice alone doesn't make perfect, you may be just entrenching the same mistake.

Maybe it would help to break it down into small steps instead? It works with most learning.

I know that I got very tense trying to land a whole bunch of fingers at once when I started. So I'd concentrate on what looked like the important ones (not musically important, but from the point of view of getting the hand into shape). When I had them solid I'd add another until I could land them all at the same time, or at least rapidly in downward order as I strummed.

When I do D, the index and middle fingers sit side by side very comfortably and seem to anchor the shape. So maybe you could try landing them (ignoring the bad noise from the B string) until you hit them clean 10 out of 10. Then add the ring finger on the B string?? Perhaps there's a better way to break it down into steps though? That's just a guess, not professional advice.

Just a thought. Good luck with it anyway.


   
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(@jonetoe)
Reputable Member
Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 365
 

I've posted this before and I know its not right but it works for me. I do a simple D pinky on B string 3rd fret, middle finger G string 2nd fret. Its really fingering for Dsus2 but if you strum strings 5 through 2 it sounds fine. I find I can switch to most other chords with minimum movement ( especially D minor) if your hot to play songs with D its a suitable substitute. It may cause problems down the line say with arpeggios or if you really want to get precise in the future, so I know one day I may have to deal with it


   
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(@mattguitar_1567859575)
Noble Member
Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 879
 

A couple of things.

G to D.....when you are playing this, use this form of G to help you -

320033. Use your pinky to fret the high E string 3rd fret. Your third finger on the B string 3rd fret yeah?

Ok now when you change to the D, leave your 3rd finger (ring finger) on the B string, all you have to do is place your other 2 fingers on the high E and the G strings to get to your D. Its really easy after a while.

It should feel like your ring finger is the anchor point.

try it, it will help

Matt


   
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(@ignar-hillstrom)
Illustrious Member
Joined: 21 years ago
Posts: 5349
 

Mike: try taking one or two lessons and start working with a teacher on the D chord. Quite often there are obvious mistakes we make which cause our problems, but evaluating your own way of playing is tough since you're paying attention to what you're playing as well. The D chord is indeed a pretty easy chord, and whatever is holding you back might hold you back later with more advanced stuff as well. Try playing songs that feature Dsus2 chords [x x 0 2 3 0] and see how that goes. It's a beautifull chord and a nice intro to the full D major chord.

As for reasons to continue: take a look at your frustration know and try to imagine how you'll feel when it suddenly all falls together. 8)

Rock on, quiting is for wimps!


   
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(@twistedlefty)
Famed Member
Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 4113
 

I miss it at least 50% of the time
Take heart, You are nailing it the other 50% of the time and in another month or so you will nail it maybe 75% of the time or more.
I have been playing 11 months now and even though I claim to have no problem with the D chord I do miss it every once in a while, not often but when I do, I keep playing while I make a quick adjustment and its usually not really noticable.

like missleman said your cup is half FULL. when i started it seemed every song my buddys wanted to play had a D chord in it and i have big fingers. for the first year or so i learned to bar the A,C#,F#, with my index finger and i rest my middle finger on top of the index finger and use my ring finger on the D. i know it's kinda weird but it helped me and i still catch myself doing it once in a while. i guess what i'm saying is sometimes there is more than one way to finger a difficult chord. :wink:

#4491....


   
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(@Anonymous)
New Member
Joined: 1 second ago
Posts: 0
 

WOW! I can't believe all the people who are awake this late at night! I just got to work and there are 2 pages of responses! Thanks everyone for your advice. I'll try to address everyone's comments...

David

I did notice that my thumb was wrapping around when I first had problems with the D. I have been concentrating on that. Sometimes it helps and other times it doesn't. When I go to fret the D (or any chord for that matter) I usually try to anchor my index first and the other fingers follow...except of course when the index is not used then I lead with the middle finger....I did notice that the neck on my LP is much "slicker" that the Fender acoustic. When I tried with the acoustic last night it seemed easier to fret the D. My thumb doesn't slide as much when sweaty and the fretboard seems a bit "rougher" making it easier to anchor my fingers...but the D is still a problem.

Chris

For me I usually miss the middle finger on the E string when doing the D. That seems to be the problem finger. Once in a while I miss the ring finger on the B string bout only about 20% of the time. Usually my middle finger "slides off" the edge of the fretboard...It started getting better last night after I posted this topic so we'll see when I get home tonight how it goes.

Matt

I like to use the 320003 version of the G chord...for me it's easier and I can fret it perfectly just about every time. I only use your way for Wish You Were Here and I do tend to miss the ring finger a lot...

Arjen

Getting a teacher now that I am back to work is out of the question. Being a teacher myself I am up to my neck in paperwork and I can barely get my practices in. As for the Dsus2 chord I use that a lot when doing the beginner version of Wanted Dead Or Alive. But it is a different sound and doesn't seem to work with the Beatles songs.

For everyone that suggested different fingerings for the D chord, I prefer not to do that. I am already doing that with the Achord andI don't want that to become a habit. I need to get this fixed properly.

It's was good to hear that others are having or have had the same problem with this chord. I don't feel as "wierd" now knowing I am not alone. If this chord weren't so popular in the music I liked I would put it on the back burner for now. But as most of you know, the D chord is a "major" chord (no pun intended!) in guitar music. I HAVE to learn it the right way!

Thanks again everyone for your advice!


   
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 cnev
(@cnev)
Famed Member
Joined: 21 years ago
Posts: 4459
 

I think if you go slow and take note of the things David mentioned regarding your thumb you should be OK.

About a year or so into playing I started to notice that for whatever reason I would have a dead string on the D chord. And I always thought I was playing it correctly all along. I ended up just paying more attention to my fingers in it wasn't long till I started to finger it without deadening strings.

Just hang in there and go slow itt'll come.

And I wouldn't necessarily equate barre chords = difficult. I found barre chords to be much easier than open chords. Everyone learns things differently and what's easy for one person may be difficult for another.

For the amount of time you've been playing your doing fine don't be to impatient and it'll all fall into place soon. Then you'll be the one responding to some other newbie's question about the same thing.

"It's all about stickin it to the man!"
It's a long way to the top if you want to rock n roll!


   
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(@slejhamer)
Famed Member
Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 3221
 

When I go to fret the D (or any chord for that matter) I usually try to anchor my index first and the other fingers follow...except of course when the index is not used then I lead with the middle finger....

Once in a while I miss the ring finger on the B string bout only about 20% of the time.

Mike, try placing the ring finger first, middle finger 2nd, index last. It sounds weird, but it might help.

Keep your fretting hand (and your brain!) as relaxed as possible. Go s-l-o-w-l-y as you make your chord changes.

Make sure your hand is high enough above the fretboard - someone here described it as if your hand was a spider crawling on top.

Listen to David's suggestion: thumb position is crucial! Not only for this, but for when you get into barre chords as well. Get it right now or it will cause more problems later on (trust me on this one!)

"Everybody got to elevate from the norm."


   
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(@nolongerme)
Honorable Member
Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 475
 

hang in there and you'll get it right, it took me weeks to get a good clean sound


   
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(@mr_clean001)
Estimable Member
Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 88
 

I don't know have anything other to add that hasn't ben said other than tossing some support your way. D was a pain in the butt for me, but it falls in to place eventually.....for me the F chord is about to kill me and I feel like I have arthritis when I start playing barres, but I keep going. Eventually I will get there and the same will happen with you. Don't give it up man, we have your back!

"Practice until you get a guitar welt on your chest...if it makes you
feel good, don't stop until you see the blood from your fingers.
Then you'll know you're on to something!"
- Ted Nugent


   
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(@nolongerme)
Honorable Member
Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 475
 

yeah the f chord is hard, and i've been working on it for several weeks.


   
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 geoo
(@geoo)
Famed Member
Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 2801
 

Mike,

I have been playing guitar since Feb, which is several months longer than you, with a teacher, and I still flub the D chord fairly often. But I have learned to hear it and move my finger a bit to make it better.

Just cause its an open chord doesnt mean its easy. Heck, the C wasnt easy. I thought I would never reach my pinky to that high E on the G chord. The A chord still kills me cause I learned it incorrectly the first time.. Its a life time of fun. Just enjoy it.

Geoo

“The hardest thing in life is to know which bridge to cross and which to burn” - David Russell (Scottish classical Guitarist. b.1942)


   
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(@nolongerme)
Honorable Member
Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 475
 

i play an a chord with two fingers cuase mine are so big and i still get a good sound. D has always been a pretty good chord for me but a Bm is a real pain


   
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