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Thread: Capo use

  1. #31
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    Maybe I don't know what I'm doing. I can sing in three or four different keys, but if I use a capo I end up trying to sing to it in a higher octave. If I were playing in the key of G I would get along fine, but if I moved the capo up the neck to turn the G into a C, I'm trying to sing soprano in the key of G. And I'm not a soprano singer. If I try to sing in a lower octave and I'm capoed off way up the neck it just sounds off to me. Maybe I'm doing something wrong. But it is so much easier for me to sing in the different keys if I transpose and keep the chords lower on the neck, regardless of the key.
    I don't want to live in a world that is linear.

    I just want everyone to understand that I am not a ukulele expert, even though it may look at times like I'm pretending to be.

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  2. #32
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    I don’t sing in just one key either, it really depends on the range of the song. I’m an alto and generally like G or the surround keys. Occasionally I will be surprised that C will work (rarely happens) like on many Hank William’s songs. Problem is that lots of ukers will want to do a song in C (but they don’t want to lead it) that is just wayyyy too high/low for me to sing. If I weren’t leading it, I would try to sing along, maybe practicing harmony but it I’m leading it then it has to be in my key (or close)...transpose or break out a capo.

  3. #33
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    Andrew from rock class 101 recommends the G7 (https://rockclass101.com/ukulele-acc...-buyers-guide/), which seems to work on my pono baritone. It does slide around if I hit it with my fretting hand. Maybe I should try a guitar capo? Anyway, the G7 is less intrusive than others I’ve tried and came in handy when a songwriter sent me the chords to her song for guitar capo’ed at the 3rd fret. I put the capo on my baritone at the 3rd fret and it sounded just right.

  4. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rllink View Post
    But it is so much easier for me to sing in the different keys if I transpose and keep the chords lower on the neck, regardless of the key.
    I am cowboy chord player too.


  5. #35
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    If one learns those easy cowboy chords in just the keys of C and F, G and Bb,D, then there is no more than 3 halftones between each keys. Selecting a suitable key to a vocal range should be possible. Those are all ukulele friendly and common keys.

    Add to those also the keys of Eb and A, that are too in my opinion quite uke friendly keys and not that uncommon. And we will have at maximum 1 wholetone between subsequent 2 keys. Transposing is a fantastic mind tool. Assign degrees to chords in a song. First better into the paper of course.

    Nothing against capos, I just don't like them in ukulele. The lower the chord in neck the better it sounds, usually I mean, in my opinion.
    Last edited by Jarmo_S; 04-29-2019 at 12:33 AM.

  6. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jarmo_S View Post
    The lower the chord in neck the better it sounds, usually I mean.
    Dr. Suzuki (violin) often said to his students similar thing. He played open string and said that this is best sound.

  7. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jarmo_S View Post
    Transposing is a fantastic mind tool. Assign degrees to chords in a song.
    I agree. After using the capo to hear What the songwriter intended, i can begin to transpose and hear what works best.

  8. #38
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    I kinda use a guitar capo on my uke. It's always clamped on the headstock, and the main reason why I do this is because I like how it looks lol.

    From a more practical perspective, I know just enough theory and technique to be able to get by without a capo imo. Like if someone tells me "Capo 5th and strum Am," I'd rather just bar the 5th fret with my finger and have those first couple frets available for other Dm(ish) chords like 2210, 0258, or 5500. Also, my fingers are strong enough to bar the stuff I need to bar on uke (but not guitar though omg I got my acoustic set up and I still can bar stuff on it).

    For reference, I use Kyser acoustic guitar capos and my tenor uke's a Makala (MK-T).
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  9. #39
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    I pretty much transpose everything that isn’t in a key that suits my voice or that presents difficulties with chord transitions that are easier to negotiate in other keys.

    Honestly, I wondered whether a capo would ever work for me with a uke ... I always imagined they would get in the way of my fretting hand...that is until my wife bought a Daddario NS ukulele capo. It works!

    I still hardly ever use it though.
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  10. #40
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    I play lead in a couple uke groups and lead guitar in a bluegrass group. I use a capo quite often to add a different sound(color) to a song. If you have a few other guitars or ukes all playing the same chord shape, it sounds rather dull and lifeless. If not using a capo, I just play up the neck with a different chord shape. Doesn't slide around or get in the way of the hand.

    I've gone thru all the capos thru the 60 years of playing string instruments. I finally broke down and bought a custom capo from Bill Stokes of Showcase. It's a Elliot style yoke capo. It's very thin and sturdy. No need to retune after putting it on like other capos.

    Most don't use a capo mainly due to their sliding or interference with the hand. It's because you're using a cheap faunky capo. Includes the G7, Shubb, Thalia etc. Once a person learns to use one properly and has a proper capo, it falls into place how valuable a tool they are. Probably the next best capo I've used was a pencil cut down to the proper width secured by. a taut rubber band.

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