bar chord voicings help needed

Discussion in 'Tab & Music Forum' started by mallard, Jan 1, 2010.

  1. mallard

    mallard Strat-Talk Member

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    hi guys iv been learning guitar for around 12 months.Not had lessons just self teaching this is why iv joined this forum in the hope of picking brains lol. well iv learned all my open chords, 7th chords, major scale all 5 positions ,pentatonic major and minor scale all 5 positions. now over the last couple of months iv been learning to play bar chords the caged system. my question is this could some body explain the different voicings of the 5 shapes. am i correct in thinking the A and E shape bar chords are used in rock?. what sort of music do the C,G,D shapes used for. I'm asking this because I'm struggling to play those shapes and as i only really wont to play rock songs do i need the other shapes.i was thinking i could learn those shapes as i get more experience. thanks guys
     
  2. stratagem

    stratagem Strat-Talker

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    You would be surprised at how varied chord voicings are for any genre. I wouldn't consider the 'CAGED' shapes to be genre related. It is more about knowing the whole fretboard and where to find the things you need. Your improv will be much improved by knowing those additional chord positions.

    For example, one guitar player can do the standard 'A' or 'E' shape for the chords and another player can use the 'D' shape for a little pop jangle.

    Keep on it. Don't look for an excuse not to learn something, everything you can learn on guitar is worthwhile.
     
  3. CandyAppleHead

    CandyAppleHead Strat-O-Master

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    +1. All the CAGED shapes are used in rock, so it's well worth spending the time learning them. One thing to remember though, is that the shapes are often played only partially, i.e. not using all the strings. For instance the "G" shape chord is usually played on the middle four strings only, which creates a cool voicing - for example the chord of C Major can be played as x7555x, with the 7th fret played with the third finger and the 555 played using the index finger across all three as a bar.

    Learning the shapes and what chords they are when played in all positions will really open up the fretboard for you.
     
  4. mallard

    mallard Strat-Talk Member

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    thanks guys for the tips. i will work harder on those shapes, there is one other thing that's on my mind that i can't work out for my self, and that's if i play a chord progression say A,D,E dose that work better playing the A with the A shape the D with the shape and the E with the E shape or do i just play all 3 with 1 shape. thanks
     
  5. CandyAppleHead

    CandyAppleHead Strat-O-Master

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    There is no "right" or "best" way to play the chords; it comes down to what sounds right for the song. For A,D,E you could play the standard open chords for them or try them like these:

    A x-x-7-6-5-5 - standard A shape open chord
    D x-9-7-7-7-x ) basically a G shape chord, using the index finger to bar the 7th fret
    E x-11-9-9-9-x ) as above, but bar the ninth fret

    or

    A x-0-2-2-2-0
    D x-x-4-2-3-2 - basically a C shape chord, using the index finger to bar the second fret
    E x-x-6-4-5-4 - as above but bar the fourth fret
     
  6. mallard

    mallard Strat-Talk Member

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    thanks candyapplehead you have unlocked a door for me there. i understand now. the light as just come on as they say thanks again
     
  7. CandyAppleHead

    CandyAppleHead Strat-O-Master

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    Cheers - careful though, as I put a typo in there - the x-x-7-6-5-5 in the first set isn't a standard A shape open chord, it's a partial E major shape. The x-x-2-2-2-0 in the second set is the A shape. Sorry for the confusion.
     
  8. weelie

    weelie Strat-Talk Member

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    Check and understand that:
    A and G are essentially the same.
    C and D are essentially the same.

    That's why some people learn DAF instead of CAGED. :D

    The long A (that looks like like open G up two frets, A string open, E string not played) is common in fingerpicking blues. As is the similar A7 that looks like G7 up two frets. The seventh note (G) on the high string makes it sound more clearly.

    The C7 and B7 you know are essentially the same too. Those two are a bit different, but same on the four bass strings. Using that shape, either one, is very common in blues or soul music, and I think it's best sounding 7th chord. Funk guitar is based on the extension of that shape, the C9: x32333. Or extension of that C13: x32335.

    Also it's not necessary to play all strings of a chord. Playing just top three strings of an open D chord is a D major chord (a major chord only needs three notes: root, third and fifth, and this shape happens to have the three on the top three strings). Moving that shape is very easy. You may play the shape of C chord if you want to play the top four strings and playing the open D is too tough for you. Of course then it's not a barre chord, just a movable shape.

    The purpose of CAGED is to see the whole fretboard up and down. Learn the locations of the root notes (the bass note of a basic open chord is the root note, though the chords will have another one too) with it. Learn the chords and major scales with it.

    I think any weird jazz chord can be seen as a CAGED chord extension. I do see them like that. Makes it easier to memorize them.
     
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2010
  9. amstratnut

    amstratnut Peace thru Music.

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    There is a lot to learn and it can seem overwhelming at times. I recommend learning songs you like. They will naturally have chords in them that are either new or applied in a new way, and this will expand your ability without having to memorize chords you're not sure you'll ever use. Eventually you'll have learned them all (or lots of them) anyway.
     
  10. lesray

    lesray Strat-Talker

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    i suggest you learn a bit about chord contruction then in a bit time you can play what chord u want where you want. For instance pick a position on the neck and then play a song you know without moving position so you will have to find new invertions of the chords. Also you could then relate a scale to each chord thenfigure out figure it's relationship with the caged sytem.Good luck
     
  11. scotzoid

    scotzoid Senior Stratmaster

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    You're correct in thinking that the A & E shape barre chords, played as what I call "power chords" on the lower strings, make up a lot of hard rock songs, but as you will learn in time, not even the most dedicated rocker limits himself to only the power chords. Those other shapes can be used for all sorts of dynamic changes that make rock so much fun.