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- How To Play Bar Chords On Guitar | Beginner Guitarist Academy on How Long Does It Take To Learn Barre Chords
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- Samuel Lafontaine on The Two Major Barre Chord Shapes You Need to Know
- kaoticnick on Why You Need Barre Chords
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So another article I’ve just submitted to EzineArticles. A lot of requests came for me to do this chord so here goes!
As usual, if this is your first time here you can either scroll down the page or, better yet, look through the categories on the sidebar for all sorts of helpful tips, and techniques, on how to play barre chords. If you can’t play a normal barre chord then reading this article might be pointless as the B chord is quite advanced – even for a barre chord. Once you’ve read my other posts – or got the hang of barre chords already – read on!
Playing a proper B Chord on guitar is probably the most difficult challenge for beginners. This is largely because it typically requires two barres – the second of which may involve putting your ring finger in a somewhat awkward position. The good news is that – like every other aspect of learning to play the guitar – it gets easier with practice. Also, it is my personal opinion that mastering this chord form represents the final stepping stone towards being a “real” guitarist – one who can play virtually any song without having to substitute easier chords that don’t quite fit in lieu of those that the song calls for.
I should point out that this article assumes you can already play ordinary barre chords, i.e. you can play, for example, a B Minor chord – with no buzzing. To play the B Chord on guitar, you must first lay down your index finger across the bottom five strings of the second fret (just as you would do to play a B Minor). This, however, is where it gets tricky. For most people, only one other finger is required to fret this chord. You need to barre your ring finger (the one beside your pinky) across the second, third, and fourth strings – counting from the bottom – on the fourth fret. At the same time, your ring finger should NOT touch the first string AT ALL. The slightest touch will deaden it and cause an unpleasant buzzing sound.
As I mentioned earlier, playing a B chord on guitar requires that you put your fretting hand in an extremely awkward position. To achieve this chord form, you need to maintain a firm grip with your barring finger and use the area between your fingertip and the first joint in your finger to press on the three strings I specified above. You must then elevate the rest of your finger – at the joint – to get it out of the way (up and off the first string). This will take a lot of tweaking and practice to get right but it isn’t as impossible as it will feel at first! I promise!
There are a couple of points to note that can make the insidious B chord a bit easier (both physically and psychologically). Firstly, it can help to tilt your ring finger slightly to the left to help ease it off that first string. Also, you should keep in mind that it takes time to build up the flexibility in that first joint to accomodate the awkward position you have to get it into. It will get easier with practice, however, as your flexibility increases and your fingers become accustomed to the unusual formation. It will start to feel just as natural as any other barre chord with a few weeks of practice and comes with an added bonus. Being able to play a clear B chord on guitar means you can play any of what we call “A family barre chords”. In short, this means you can move the chord form up and down the neck to create new chords of this family – which is beyond the scope of this article but very useful.
Let’s hope they like and publish it! Subscribe to my blog(option to do that is on the sidebar) and check back often! Email me comments/question at firstname.lastname@example.org