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Thread: Mastering difficult chord changes

  1. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by OregonJim View Post
    Put your fingers on the chord SLOWLY. Try to get all fingers to drop at the same time, not one by one. Now remove your hand from the fretboard and repeat 100 times every day for a week.

    Now that you have the chords in your fingers, do the same thing with changes. Chord A to chord B 100 times in a row, all fingers at once, gradually increasing speed.

    No strumming. This is all about training the left hand.
    That's such an interesting method, definitely gonna give it a try!
    -Lou

  2. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by ubulele View Post
    If you're not using a strap, get one, even if it's just a thong. So many chord formation and transition problems are the result of insufficient neck and body support. Why stack the deck against yourself?

    Plan the move mentally before you move your fingers. Look especially for a guide finger: a finger that remains on the same string, even if it moves along the string to a different position. (This won't always be an option.) If you have a guide finger opportunity, you'll release finger pressure during the transition, but don't lift the guide finger off the string; just slide it along the string if it changes position. It gives your hand a point of orientation.

    Practice chord changes in slow motion, taking note of how the fingers need to move. After a number of repetitions, your fingers should start migrating to the new positions semi-automatically. Then you can gradually speed up the transition till you can do it confidently as fast as you need to. The important thing is to make the transition a smooth, continuous process. Once you get used to making awkward transitions, you'll find it easier to just think of the next chord shape and do the right thing subconsciously, but it takes training, and there will still be certain transitions you'll have to plan and practice.

    Some chords can be fingered in several ways, and a change in fingering, though it may seem unnatural, can simplify a difficult transition. You'll only find this out through experimentation. It's not always the second chord you'll refinger; sometimes you'll refinger the first chord, preparing for the transition.

    With some shapes, it helps to land part of the shape and then follow with the remaining fingers. For instance, to form an Fmaj7 shape (2413 rather than 5500), it may help to land the xx13 part first, leaving the other two fingers sticking out, where they almost naturally position over their destinations. Eventually, you want to plant the whole shape at the same time, but the staged approach helps to train your brain how to get the feel of the right shape.
    Thanks so much- I'll be sure to give this a try!
    -Lou

  3. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by EDW View Post
    As many have said SLOW is key.
    Find the trickiest spot and go from chord 1 to 2 as slowly as you have to do it accurately.
    Do it many times.
    When that is comfortable go from chord 2 to 3. Do the same, then try all three.
    Practice the entire sequence that way, piece by piece.
    Gradually speed up
    Thanks so much!
    -Lou

  4. #14
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    AnonymousLou, Uncle Rod Higuchi here.

    Fellow UUer, Choirguy, prepared and uploaded Practice videos using the Practice Sheets
    from the Ukulele Boot Camp.

    Search YouTube for "ukulele boot camp" and I'm sure you will find them. I believe you
    can also adjust the tempo which is set at 82 beats per minute.

    keep uke'in',
    Uncle Rod Higuchi
    ( rohiguchi@gmail.com )

    MP3s: http://www.mediafire.com/?50db7nls4o6m6
    Ukulele Boot Camp, FREE Songbook, Holiday, Hawaiian & More: http://ukulelebootcamp.weebly.com
    Crazy G tutorial on YouTube ( uncle rod crazy g )
    pdf file for Crazy G:
    https://www.dropbox.com/s/0o6id06c06...20TAB.pdf?dl=0

  5. #15
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    Some great tips here about practicing


  6. #16
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    Nov 2012
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    Use a metronome and start slow.

  7. #17
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    Think about the way your fingers have to move to get from one shape to the next. What's the smallest movement you can make? Then, you do it. A lot.

  8. #18
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    Thanks so much for all your advice everyone!
    -Lou

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