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So this is yet another article I wrote for EzineArticles (just a while ago). It’s my best effort at breaking down the B Minor Chord to make it as easy as possible for beginners. I hope you guys (and the editors at EA) like it!
Self-taught guitarists often learn the B minor chord as their first barre chord. This is because this chord has an annoying habit of popping up in all the songs new guitarists want to play most – popular rock songs, etc. Barre chords are no easy challenge and in this article I will try to give the best advice I can to make mastering the B Minor Chord as easy as it can be.
Before we get into the technical stuff, it might be motivating to know that I’ve yet to meet someone who found this, and all other, barre chords anything less than frustrating at first. It takes time and patience to develop the finger strength – and the exceptional co-ordination required to fret barre chords properly. That being said, let’s go through the B Minor Chord – step by step.
First, you need to lay down your index finger (barring finger) across the bottom 5 strings of the second fret. The B Minor Chord requires a five-string barre (which will require you to exert quite a bit of pressure that might hurt a bit at first) and it can help to align your thumb with the back of the guitar neck – maximizing leverage. It’s also best to position your index finger as close to the second fret wire as possible – without crossing over into the third fret. This will make placing the other fingers easier by shortening the distance between your barring finger and the other fretted notes. Also, try rolling that index finger a little onto its side (towards the nut and tuning pegs) so that the firmer surface area of the side of your finger is exposed to the strings – allowing you to better apply pressure than if you simply lay your finger flat (which would expose a softer area – not conducive to distributing pressure evenly). Once you feel like you have a good grip on the barre, you should try picking each of the five strings to see if they ring out clearly. They probably won’t on your first try but, the more you practice this, the sooner you will find that it becomes easy.
The next step in fretting a B Minor chord is fingering the remaining three notes. You will need to put your middle finger on the second string (counting from the bottom), on the third fret. Finally, on the fourth fret, you will place your ring finger on the fourth string and your little finger on the third string. Try your best to maintain a firm grip with your barring finger as you form the rest of the chord. Now, repeat what I mentioned earlier and try picking all five strings individually. If any of the strings buzz, or just don’t ring clearly, you need to make minor intuitive adjustments to how you finger that string until you get a crisp clear sound from it.
Finally, when all the strings sound just right, strum the chord and listen to how it resounds. If you don’t hear any buzzing, make a note of how it’s supposed to sound as well as the positioning of your fingers. Try to practice playing the B Minor Chord as much as possible – even though you’ll find that switching to, and from, it takes far too long for you to use it in any songs – at first. The good news is that, with a little patience (and a lot of practice), playing a B Minor chord becomes easy and all the other barre chords will come quickly once you get the hang of it.
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