Changing Chords Quickly
I remember well how difficult it was to originally change to any guitar chord. In particular the ‘C’ chord tends to be a little tricky for new guitarists. With a bit of practice, the chords do get easier to play.
Daniel’s question included help in how to transition quickly between chords. He took the recent Worship Guitar Class Newsletter Survey. Here are some tips that should help any guitar player in changing chords quickly.
Changing Chords Quickly Tips
- Put down the bass finger first. For example, for a ‘C’ chord the root note is ‘C’. It’s better to work on placing the 3rd finger down first so you can play the bass of the chord and still have a second to get the rest of the chord down. Eventually try to place all of your fingers down at the same time.
- Think ahead to the next chord. Think about where your fingers are moving before they actually move. This is especially true for shifts in position on the guitar. Look to the frets you are moving too before you actually shift your fingers. If there is a shift from the first position to the 7th position, your eyes should be on the 7th fret before beginning to move your fingers from the first fret.
- Don’t play with excess tension. It’s much easier to move quickly when your hands are not tense. Check the fingers that you are not using to make sure they are not holding tension. It’s also helpful to relax your shoulders and face which can help to relax your hands.
- Isolate the harder chords and work on them separately. If there is a chord progression that is not coming quickly, isolate it. Play the progression extremely slowly, then little by little speed it up. You may want to play the chord progression 20, 40 or even 100 times.
- Break it into smaller units. If it’s a chord that is awkward for you to play, break it down and change to just a few of the fingers first. When that is comfortable try changing to the full chord. I show this technique in the Worship Guitar Class volume one DVD with the change from ‘D’ to ‘G’.
- Practice. Learning to play the guitar does take practice. Playing worship songs on the guitar is a double blessing because you can be worshiping and playing the guitar too.
- Pray. As a Christian, we have access to the Creator of the universe and have the opportunity to request help in all of our endeavors.
God’s richest blessings over your desires to learn how to play the guitar and your desires to use it for Him! With time, and His help, you should be changing chords quickly soon.