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CitizenSnips
07-13-2009, 07:17 AM
This is by far the most painful chord I have ever tried to learn. I've been practicing it for a good 2 weeks now and haven't seen much improvement. It looks like this:




B

e -1-|---|---|---|---|
B -1-|---|-4-|---|---|
G -1-|---|-3-|---|---|
D -1-|---|-2-|---|---|
A -1-|---|---|---|---|
E -1-|---|---|---|---|




I'm pretty sure its a B anyways. It first showed up when I was trying to learn Hey Jude a few weeks ago, and the song requires you switch from F to B numerous times and I just can't get the hang of it. The F chord is no problem, I mastered it thanks to an old thread I posted here and a lot of help from you guys. I'm hoping some of you can help me again with this B chord. I can get it to sound clear, but it is extremely painful on my fingers and I have to contort my whole body, leaning towards the neck of the guitar to have it sound right.

My main problem is having my first finger bar the whole first fret while I try getting all 3 of my others fingers to play the A shape on the 3rd fret. Either my finger starts sliding off the bar of the first fret and starts moving into the second or my other fingers holding the A shape start plunking because I'm using all my pressure on my first finger to keep it barred.

The way I have been practicing is just playing through the whole Hey Jude song and forcing myself to finger the B chord, even if it doesn't sound right. This hasn't given me very much improvement and I'm hoping to find another way. Plus my whole left hand feels like total death before even finishing the song because of all the force I'm using to try and force the B chord correctly. If anyone has got any tips on how I should practice this chord It'd be very appreciated.

For reference, you can clearly see the B chord I am speaking of being played here in this video at the 20 second mark:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kcyLye9n7vI&feature=related

That is the version of the song I have been trying to learn for the past few weeks.

cpatch
07-13-2009, 07:29 AM
Have you tried using your middle finger to do a partial barre on the third fret instead of using three fingers? Even if you end up muting the first string while trying to do the partial you still have a B chord.

seeso
07-13-2009, 07:46 AM
B

e -1-|---|---|---|---|
B -1-|---|-4-|---|---|
G -1-|---|-3-|---|---|
D -1-|---|-2-|---|---|
A -1-|---|---|---|---|
E -1-|---|---|---|---|




That's not a B chord, that's a Bb chord.

What I used to do with these A form barre shapes is help my index finger press the strings down with my middle finger. Then I barre the D, G, and B strings with my ring finger. You can even use your pinky to help your ring finger out.

There are two mutes involved with this method. The high E string is muted with my ring finger, and the low E is muted by the tip of my index finger.

It's not a long-term solution, though. You should continue to build hand strength until you can grab this barre shape while letting that high E ring out.

What helps me a lot is knowing that I don't have to hold down all six strings with my index finger. All that finger has to do is hold the A string and the high E string. No pressure is required on the low E, D, G, or B string.

What this does is allows you to employ a more curved form to your index finger, and focus your pressure only where it needs to be applied.

Other things that help a lot:

Thumb placement with these shapes is crucial. You can't hold the neck in the palm of your hand for them. You've got to have your thumb on the back of neck to get the most pressure out of your other fingers.

Get as perpendicular to the fret board as you can. You're telling me that you've got to contort your body to get this shape, and that's not right. Get as square as you can, it should help.

CitizenSnips
07-13-2009, 09:55 AM
Other things that help a lot:

Thumb placement with these shapes is crucial. You can't hold the neck in the palm of your hand for them. You've got to have your thumb on the back of neck to get the most pressure out of your other fingers.

Get as perpendicular to the fret board as you can. You're telling me that you've got to contort your body to get this shape, and that's not right. Get as square as you can, it should help.

Thanks, this helped a lot actually. I played around with the placement of my thumb and found a comfortable spot on the back of the neck and I'm almost getting all of the strings to fully ring out now without contorting my body. Definitely a bigger improvement in a few hours than for the past 2 weeks on my own with these tips :p

seeso
07-13-2009, 10:12 AM
Right on, glad to have been of assistance. :nana:

UkeNukem
07-19-2009, 05:07 PM
I had much trouble with that chord form when I originally learned it (around '71) and my ring finger just would not bend enough. But you know after about a year of just playing the chord as best I could the joint stretched. I figured out I could mute the 6th string with the tip of my index finger making the barre. Also, it got easier when I upgraded to a better guitar!

You might want to try a movable major chord based on the 6th string. You know, the basic barre in the E form. But, try fingering it like X, 9, 9, 8, 7, 7 ( use this on fret one as my "cheater" F chord). I mute the 6th string with my thumb. Actually, you can even mute the 1st string (with your index finger) as well making it a movable 4 note chord. Just remember the root is on the fret your index finger is on but on the 6th (and 1st) string.

Another advantage of chords like this is that you can choke them out quickly by just relaxing your hand. Then just squeeze to bring it back. Makes for some funky rhythms!

CitizenSnips
07-20-2009, 10:10 AM
If anyone else is having problems with this chord or barring in general, I'd like to point you to this video:

http://www.farhatguitar.com/edu--bard-chord_50/lesson_116/part_555

Combined with your tips and this video I was able to bar much better than ever before! The tip in the video about the elbow, bending it in slightly, was probably the biggest help of all. I've never seen anyone else mention anything about the elbow, but bending it in slightly for me anyways, has made all the difference.

Mayercaster
08-13-2009, 06:02 AM
e -2-|---|---|---|---|
B -2-|---|-4-|---|---|
G -2-|---|-4-|---|---|
D -2-|---|-4-|---|---|
A -2-|---|---|---|---|
E -X-|---|---|---|---|

OR

e -7-|---|---|---|---|
B -7-|---|---|---|---|
G -7-|---|-8-|---|---|
D -7-|---|-9-|---|---|
A -7-|---|-9-|---|---|
E -7-|---|---|---|---|

The way I would play a B chord if I was to be reading the chords to a song

veep
08-14-2009, 12:31 PM
I have not tryed to play this chord.