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Using a capo to change song key....

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tabmow
(@tabmow)
Eminent Member
Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 24
Topic starter  

Hi folks,
I know there's a couple of articles on capos & song keys by David on here, but i'm having trouble putting it all together. Basically, there is a song ( http://olga.net/dynamic/browse.php?printer=0&local=main/m/mclachlan_sarah/push.crd
that has chords such as Bb, Eb, Cm, etc.
Changing it to a different key would be simpler for some of us instead of using chords like Bb, Eb, etc. But in order to know what fret to put the capo on, I have to know what key the song is in, right?

And once that is done, for example if I put the capo on the 3rd fret, how do i know what the chords get transposed to? Ie. Bb -> G, etc.

Any pointers, advice, help would be appreciated.
Thanks!


   
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Dan Lasley
(@danlasley)
Noble Member
Joined: 15 years ago
Posts: 2118
 

Methinks you've already got it.

You are correct that putting the capo 3 frets up moves the chords 3 half-steps down. So the song is now played G C Am.

Knowing the key makes it easier to make the changes, but "doing it by hand" works well too.

For example, did you consider capo-1? That would have been A D Bm, but some folk don't like to fret Bm.

As noted in David's columns, there are also voicing issues. The D is played on 4 strings, and the C on 5 strings:
From lowest to highest tones:
C D
Root Root
3rd
5th 5th
8va 8va
3rd 3rd

That extra 3rd is important to the sound of the chord.

Keep it up, you're going in the right direction.

-Laz


   
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Tim_Madsen
(@tim_madsen)
Prominent Member
Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 724
 

This won't help you with the capo but it's a really handy tool for changing the key and chords of a song.

http://www.guitartips.addr.com/conversionwheel.html

And here's a capo conversion chart.

http://www.guitartips.addr.com/tip110.html

Tim Madsen
Nobody cares how much you know,
until they know how much you care.

"What you keep to yourself you lose, what you give away you keep forever." -Axel Munthe


   
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tabmow
(@tabmow)
Eminent Member
Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 24
Topic starter  

Thanks very much both of you. I'll keep working at it. Good to know i'm on the right track ;-)


   
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