One Finger Barre Chords
by Kevin Taylor
Schmange Music U.K. / Canada Schmange.com
The trick behind this lesson is to take a D shaped barre chord, and simplify it so that you can play it with only one finger. This is a technique you'll hear players such as Jimmy Page use quite a bit in such albums as "Presence" for instance.
The secret behind doing this properly is to use a combination of left and right hand muting so that unplayed strings don't sound or ring on. On the left hand, you'll want to use your thumb to wrap partially around the neck so that you can mute the 5th and 6th strings. You will also want to partially use whatever finger you're using to hold the barre chord down, to mute the first string so that it doesn't sound either.
All the chords are played on the 2nd, 3rd and 4th frets only.
You can use any one of your fingers to play chords, but most likely you'll be using your third finger the most, followed by less use of the first and second fingers. The pinky can also be used, but since you'll have less muscle strength, try to avoid it unless absolutely necessary.
Once you get understand this concept you start to realize that you can play anything from an open G chord to just about any major barre chord going up the frets. You can also expand the sound you're getting by doing harmonics on the 5th, 7th and 12th frets as well as using the low E and A strings to fill in the bottom end on barred E and A chords.
On the notation tab below, I've listed every chord up to the 12th fret. But feel free to take this all the way up to the 24th fret if you wish. Note: on the 7th and 14th frets, you can play an open E to add bass to the E and A chords.
Kevin Taylor has been involved in the music business for over 20 years and done everything from engineering and publishing to playing for indie and major label bands and producing music for several films and TV shows. Kevin owns a couple of studios in Canada and the U.K. His main studio is in Holland Landing, Canada and used primarily for multitrack recording and live rehearsals while the larger studio in Cornwall, England is used for everything from mastering, to file conversions and loop production. Kevin has also written over 500 guitar lessons for the site GuitarTricks.com.
You can hear his songs on numerous online and public radio stations. His albums are available at all online retailers such as iTunes, SoundClick.com, GarageBand.com, Indie911.com etc..or as complete CD's from CDBaby.