Learning barre chords can be a painful process. In fact, it’s even more painful when you don’t know the tricks to playing barre chords.
In today’s episode of Acoustic Tuesday, you’re getting two facts and three tricks to help you learn and play barre chords.
Once you know these two facts and three tricks, you’ll be ready to tackle the fretboard with a new perspective on barre chords!
Additionally, I’m reviewing two pieces of guitar/music gear that you should highly consider. Last but not least, you’ll see why I picked Don Ross as my featured Acoustic Tuesday artist — trust me, you don’t want to miss this episode!
As always, you can watch Acoustic Tuesday at 10 am every Tuesday in these four places:
- Acoustic Life YouTube channel
- We Play Every Day Facebook Community
- Get show notes emailed directly to your inbox.
- Listen to audio-only below or in iTunes
This Week on Acoustic Tuesday
2 Facts and 3 Tricks: Barre Chords
I want to make learning bare chords as easy as possible for you. To make this possible, here are two facts and three tricks to help you learn barre chord.
The first fact is that barre chords are moveable. Once you learn one barre chord shape, you’ve learned 12 other chords that work on each fret of your guitar.
Think of the F major chord. If you move it up two frets, you can play a G major chord. Move it up another fret and you have an Ab major chord!
The second fact is that barre chords are easily flexible and shiftable. Typically, you only need to move one finger or 2 fingers to change a minor to a major, a major to a dom7 chord, etc.
To make an F major chord into an F minor chord, all you need to do is lift your middle finger off the fretboard!
Now that you know those two facts, here are three tricks to help you out…
1. Roll Your Index Finger — Instead of playing with the soft, fleshy pads of your index finger, roll it. Try to make contact with the string with the bony, outside part of your index finger.
2. Use Your Picking Hand for Leverage — Place the elbow of your picking hand against the upper-top part of your guitar body. From their lightly press your guitar into your fretting hand as leverage to create the barre chord.
3. Shorten or Condense Chords — Who says you need to always play full six or five-string barre chords? Instead, try playing on the top three strings or the bottom three strings. This is a stepping stone to help you develop the muscle and callouses required to play barre chords.
If you have any other tips for playing barre chords, go ahead and leave them in the comments below!
In recent years, there has been a big push in wearable technology. As far as musicians go, having a wearable metronome seemed a little gimmicky.
But then I actually tried the Soundbrenner Core metronome watch.
The Soundbrenner Core is super-easy to use. With little effort, you can change the tempo, accents, time signature, and even use it as a tuner for your guitar!
Perhaps one of the most amazing aspects of the Soundbrenner Core is the decibel meter. Even in my daily guitar practice, I was shocked at how loud my guitars were.
In the comments below, let me know if you use a metronome, and whether you think a wearable tool like this would help you!
For more information on the Soundbrenner Core, be sure to visit their website today.
Earos One: High-Fidelity Hearing Protection
People in the music industry and even those who just enjoy listening to music are exposed to high decibel levels. As a result, many concert-goers or musicians may develop a hearing loss or other ear issues like tinnitus.
Developed and founded by a New York City DJ, Earos is a super-comfortable, super-effective acoustic filter for your ears.
Here’s why you should think about getting a pair…
- Protect your hearing
- Look stylish
- You still want to protect your ears without the muffled sound of earplugs
I absolutely loved using the Earos One acoustic filters. The thing is, most hearing protection tends to muffle the noises around you. As a musician, the last thing I want while listening or playing at a concert is bad sound quality.
Fortunately, Earos Ones filter the noise without sacrificing quality. The Earos Ones offer attenuation up to 25 dB and have a Noise Reduction Rating (NRR) of 17 dB.
To learn more about the Earos Ones or to purchase a pair, be sure to visit the Earos website today.
Also, use the promo code TONYAC10 at checkout to receive 10% off your Earos One purchase.
Don Ross: Fingerpicker Supreme
First off, I want to thank Dom and Sharron T. for suggesting I cover Don Ross on Acoustic Tuesday.
While I’ve heard of Don Ross, I totally forgot how much of a fingerpicking legend he is.
His melodies are groove-heavy, infectious, and sound seemingly simple. However, once you start watching him play, you begin to realize how complex and masterful his technique is.
When you start watching Don Ross, you begin to realize how efficient his playing is. He’s able to accomplish so much melody, counter melody, and chord melody with exception intention.
Here’s another example of how efficient Don’s fingerpicking is:
By the way he plays, by what plays, you can tell that Don Ross is an extremely technically proficient player.
For one final example of his playing, here’s “August on the Island,” from his self-titled 1990 debut album.
For more information on Don Ross, be sure to visit his website!
As always, let me know what you think of Don Ross or anything else I featured on this episode of Acoustic Tuesday. See you next week!