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(@rum-runner)
Reputable Member
Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 424
 

I really think movable chords are MUCH easier.
Insights and incites by Notes

Movable chords are easy, but my hand gets kind if tired if that's all I'm playing is barre chords. How did you develop the stamina for that?

Regards,

Mike

"Growing Older But Not UP!"


   
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(@notes_norton)
Noble Member
Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 1497
 

I really think movable chords are MUCH easier.
Insights and incites by Notes

Movable chords are easy, but my hand gets kind if tired if that's all I'm playing is barre chords. How did you develop the stamina for that?

I found that I don't need to press that hard to do them cleanly.

When I started, I equated a "death grip" with clean sounding chords, but I found out that a light but precise touch, just hard enough to make contact with the frets works better. It takes less strength and the guitar's intonation is actually better because the strings aren't being bent into the spaces between the frets.

Also, the kind of music I play doesn't require the chang-a-chang-a kind of rhythms that some folk and country songs do, so I can relax my left hand in short bursts where there is supposed to be silence in the comping part.

It works for lead guitar too. In fact, I can play lead much faster with a light left hand grip than I can otherwise.

Insights and incites by Notes

Bob "Notes" Norton

Owner, Norton Music http://www.nortonmusic.com Add-on Styles for Band-in-a-Box and Microsoft SongSmith

The Sophisticats http://www.s-cats.com >^. .^< >^. .^<


   
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(@dr-whom)
New Member
Joined: 15 years ago
Posts: 1
 

I have been playing guitar for 5 years and singing for about the last 7 months. I have never received lessons in either and I do both together, mostly because I really enjoy it.

I started out with chords, really learning the songs then adding in the words later. But after a while chords get a bit boring and you need more of a challenge so then I moved over to some more complicated stuff like finger picking and what not. It takes a bit of getting used to but once you start it gets a whole lot easier.


   
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(@tim_madsen)
Prominent Member
Joined: 21 years ago
Posts: 724
 

I play and sing. I started singing first then picked up the guitar a couple months later. Playing and singing is easier for me than just singing. I don't get as nervous when I'm holding a guitar.

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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(@rcsnydley1)
Trusted Member
Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 59
 

While I have bitten the bullet and learned a number of open-stringed chords, I only play them when absolutely necessary for the sound of the song. I really think movable chords are MUCH easier. I don't play a lot of old country or folk, so I don't have a lot of need for open-string chords (thankfully)

Notes - it seems you have an aversion to open string chords (cowboy chords, as you refer to them) and as an extension of that, using a capo, which does not throw your guitar out of tune if used properly. You are missing out on a whole lot of sounds and ways of making music. It would be like me not playing barre chords or movable chords because they are to hard to use. All of these are just tools to put in our musical tool boxes to give us more ways to express ourselves musically.
Open string chords can give a very nice full sound and many songs (more than I could enumerate) have been written using them. Give them a chance and you might find they do have their place.

Ric

"I've got blisters on my fingers." - Ringo Starr


   
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(@tim_madsen)
Prominent Member
Joined: 21 years ago
Posts: 724
 

Never used a capo and probably never will. Capos throw your guitar out of tune, making it sharp.

I use a capo all the time and my guitar stays in perfect tune.

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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(@minotaur)
Noble Member
Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 1089
 

Who sings while playing the guitar?

I tried. And actually, according to the class-act and stand-up guys here, I did it. :wink:
I highly doubt I'll ever sing while playing the guitar because I'll be to embarrassed :oops:

Nay! 'Tis not so! Noting ventured, nothing gained. :mrgreen:

Don't make me post one of my favorite quotes (oops, too late):
It's not the critic who counts, not the man who points out how the strong man stumbled, or when the doer of deeds could have done better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena; whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs and comes short again and again; who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions and spends himself in a worth cause; who at the best, knows in the end the triumph of high achievement; and who at the worst if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory or defeat. - Theodore Roosevelt

It is difficult to answer when one does not understand the question.


   
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(@notes_norton)
Noble Member
Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 1497
 

<...>Notes - it seems you have an aversion to open string chords (cowboy chords, as you refer to them) and as an extension of that, using a capo, which does not throw your guitar out of tune if used properly. You are missing out on a whole lot of sounds and ways of making music.<...>

I don't have an aversion to open string chords, but I don't play the kind of music that requires them. I appreciate the sound when others play them, and I think they are especially nice on acoustic guitars.

I listen to a lot of different kinds of music that I don't play. In my CD/Vinyl/Download collection you can find everything from Blues to Rock to Classical (Romantic era to contemporary) to Salsa to Jazz to Cape Verde music to Tuvan throat singing to Disco/dance to Fusion to Funk to Gypsy music (from Andalusia to India) to Ragas to Klezmer, to Chinese Classical to Caribbean (Soca/Reggae/Calypso) to Mexican to Andean to Afro-pop to dozens of other genres. But I don't play all those kinds of music.

So I agree that I'm missing out on a lot by not playing open string chords, but I'm also missing out a lot by not playing bebop, techno, fusion, concertos, metal, rap, ragas, gypsy, and other forms of music. There are only so many hours in the day, and my musical tastes are very wide, so I pick first what makes me a living, and then what I like the most.

I play in a duo http://www.s-cats.com where I make my own backing tracks. We play a variety of music, but probably more "baby-boomer" pop than anything else. On stage I play sax, wind synthesizer, flute, vocals, drum controllers, guitar and sometimes keyboards. It's not my first choice of music to play, but it is what pays the mortgage and I do enjoy it very much..

Two modern proverbs come to mind:

1) If you stand on stage long enough, people will tell you what they want to hear.

2) You can play for yourself ... you can play for other musicians ... or you can play for the general public ... if you are good enough, you will get the audience you asked for.

If I had my way, it would be cool school jazz, but that won't pay the bills.

In my age group and in my local market, the best paying gigs are playing for the adult audience (Florida is a big retirement state). Years ago I was playing Glen Miller and Duke Ellington, now it's Bob Seger, The Beatles and Elvis. And I do enjoy playing any kind of music. What I play on the guitar now is mostly leads and the kind of chord comping that requires chords to be choked with the left hand (no frang-a frang-a frang-a rhythms and since it is mostly dance music, not any of the more mellow finger-picked, classical, and other acoustic guitar styles)

Cowboy chords is the term used by the guitarist who was in one of my bands when I was younger. He said that's what the people in Nashville called them, and he used them quite well. But on stage, he seldom played them because most of the material we played used chords that could be choked with the left hand.

I bought a capo to set the string height according to the directions in my guitar's manual. I've done some experimenting with it and an electronic tuner. Putting the capo on makes the strings a tad sharp, about as much as fretting if you are using a heavy hand on the neck. Add some fretting above the capo, and the guitar gets even more sharp. Granted it is only a little sharp, and perhaps not enough for the average ear to notice, but I can hear it and I don't really like it.

So unless I start playing flat-top, I doubt I will ever have a need for the capo, except to set the string height on my electric.

Not that there is anything wrong with it, it just isn't for me and the kind of music that pays my bill.

Insights and incites by Notes

Bob "Notes" Norton

Owner, Norton Music http://www.nortonmusic.com Add-on Styles for Band-in-a-Box and Microsoft SongSmith

The Sophisticats http://www.s-cats.com >^. .^< >^. .^<


   
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(@rum-runner)
Reputable Member
Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 424
 

It's not the critic who counts, not the man who points out how the strong man stumbled, or when the doer of deeds could have done better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena; whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs and comes short again and again; who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions and spends himself in a worth cause; who at the best, knows in the end the triumph of high achievement; and who at the worst if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory or defeat. - Theodore Roosevelt

And I would add a line I have always kept in mind (don't know who said it):
No one ever erected a monument to a critic.

Regards,

Mike

"Growing Older But Not UP!"


   
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(@rcsnydley1)
Trusted Member
Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 59
 

Hey Notes - no offense I hope. I didn't mean any. Thanks for educating me I totally understand where you are coming from. I will also say I have checked out your material and you know what you are doing, so keep doing it. If it sounds good play it and thanks again.

Ric

"I've got blisters on my fingers." - Ringo Starr


   
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(@notes_norton)
Noble Member
Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 1497
 

Hey Notes - no offense I hope. I didn't mean any. <...>
No offense was taken.

There is more than one right way to do just about anything :D

Take care,
Notes

Bob "Notes" Norton

Owner, Norton Music http://www.nortonmusic.com Add-on Styles for Band-in-a-Box and Microsoft SongSmith

The Sophisticats http://www.s-cats.com >^. .^< >^. .^<


   
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