#1
So, say an F for example. Normally 1st fret of low E, third fret of A string, third fret of D string. I see a lot of tabs leaving the third fret of the D string out.

Is there anything really "wrong" with this? I do find it sounds better when using all three fingers, but it obviously is harder to finger until you really have the muscle memory down.

Also, if you choose to play the three finger version, is it considered bad technique to barre the A and D strings rather than using two fingers? Down the fretboard (say frets 1 - 6) it's easy enough to get two fingers in there, but up the board it's a lot tougher... Seems much easier to barre it.
#2
in music, pretty much anything goes.
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#4
on an F with three fingers, your still play and F and a C. with two fingers your playing an F and a C. so its all good. I prefer 3 finger because thats how I learned it but it doesnt matter. and theres nothing wrong with barring
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#5
3 is going to sound fuller, naturally since you're playing more notes, but 2 isn't wrong, because you only have 2 different notes anyway (F and C)
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#8
I use both ways and i find the 2-finger way more heavy and dark and the 3-finger way more full...
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#9
I actually find it harder to do the 2 finger version, but thats probably from only doing the 3 finger version since I learned powerchords.
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#10
A power chord is always 151. I guess I'm misunderstanding the question? Why would you ever play a three finger power chord and why would you ever play less then 3 notes with a 2 finger power chord? It's a single note and a 2 string barre....
I mean you can definitely play just a 1-5 but that isn't a power chord. And it has nothing to do with fingers
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#11
No, a powerchord is a root and 5th or multiples thereof
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Last edited by steven seagull at Dec 31, 2009,
#12
Like people before me said, Its 1 5 1 , Meaning you have F as 1 and your fifth , (F,G,A,B,C) C is the fifth and 1 is your octave F ,

so your 1, 3, 3 is really F, C, F

I usually use 3 fingers unless its supposed to sound very aggressive and its fast
like the dave mustaine spider chording thing.
#13
Quote by steven seagull
No, a powerchord is a root and 5th or multiples thereof



Three such pitch classes are needed to define any common chord, therefore the simultaneous sounding of two notes is sometimes classed as an interval rather than a chord. Hence Andrew Surmani (2004, p. 72) states; "when three or more notes are sounded together, the combination is called a chord" and George T. Jones (1994, p. 43) explains; "two tones sounding together are usually termed an interval, while three or mores tones are called a chord" while, according to Monath (1984, p. 37); "A chord is a combination of three or more tones sounded simultaneously for which the distances (called intervals) between the tones are based on a particular formula."

good job there music school.
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#14
Well, I am certainly not a music theory expert by any means, but I think it is normal practice that two finger power chords (not normal chords), are common place in many forms of guitar music. I certainly know that many of the songs I have learned, or riffs I have learned, which are 80% power chords, are (or can be) taught with only two fingers. The opening riff of Symphony of Destruction is a good example, which is actually where I got my F example from. I also thought this was half the reason for drop tuning, so you can one finger power chord all day long.

Getting back to Symphony of Destruction, the online lesson and tab I was using only stated 1 -3... Not 1-3-3. When I watch the Blood in the Water Video, you can see Broderick clearly playing 1-3-3, with three fingers, which is why I asked the question in the first place.
#15
sorry to hijack the tread but I'm new to guitar and I thought that power chords would be easy to learn along side the normal chords. My power chords sound nothing like the examples I've heard. any ideas on what could go wrong I mean come on its 2 fingers and 2 strings how am I messing it up?
#17
I have a schecter c-1 lady luck (first guitar). My buddy said that schecters are great for the price so I bought the one I liked the best, but I'm practicing on a little marshall mini amp and it sounds bad even to mine ears, so maybe thats it. any ideas on a good practice amp in the 100-200 range good for classic to hard rock. It must have a head phone jack the g/f hates the sound of my horrible playing lol

just seems like the top e string never rings out right it makes more of a thud. If I'm right it's just index on the top string of the chord then ring finger 1 chord down 2 frets away correct?
#18
Quote by potatohead_33
Are you using an amp, and using distortion?

Acoustically they sound terrible, lol

Eh, I disagree. They don't "ring" as well as most other chords, but they still sound nice. That's all opinion, though.

Anyways, I tried barring the bottom two strings for a while and I found that the chord sounded more muted than when I just used three fingers so I stopped doing that.
#19
Quote by AcousticMirror
Three such pitch classes are needed to define any common chord, therefore the simultaneous sounding of two notes is sometimes classed as an interval rather than a chord. Hence Andrew Surmani (2004, p. 72) states; "when three or more notes are sounded together, the combination is called a chord" and George T. Jones (1994, p. 43) explains; "two tones sounding together are usually termed an interval, while three or mores tones are called a chord" while, according to Monath (1984, p. 37); "A chord is a combination of three or more tones sounded simultaneously for which the distances (called intervals) between the tones are based on a particular formula."

good job there music school.

Yes, and a root, fifth and octave is still only two notes - everybody knows that a "powerchord" isn't actally a chord at all, it's just an interval.
Actually called Mark!

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#20
I use two finger when I'm palm muting, otherwise I usually use 3 fingers.

As for barring, I only do that if I'm doing the full chord, ie:


|-2-|
|-4-|
|-4-|
|-4-|
|-2-|
|---|


Otherwise I usually find it easier just to use different fingers.
#21
Whether I'm playing 2 notes or 3 on a power chord, I'm only going to be using two fingers. Three seems very awkward.
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#22
Quote by AcousticMirror
Three such pitch classes are needed to define any common chord, therefore the simultaneous sounding of two notes is sometimes classed as an interval rather than a chord. Hence Andrew Surmani (2004, p. 72) states; "when three or more notes are sounded together, the combination is called a chord" and George T. Jones (1994, p. 43) explains; "two tones sounding together are usually termed an interval, while three or mores tones are called a chord" while, according to Monath (1984, p. 37); "A chord is a combination of three or more tones sounded simultaneously for which the distances (called intervals) between the tones are based on a particular formula."

good job there music school.

Power chords are the exception - by classical definition, they're not really a chord even if you play the octave since it's just the same note over again. They are really an overhyped interval, but by convention are referred to as a chord because that's the musical role they play. Just go with the flow. They're frequently played with only the root and 5.
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#23
Quote by steven seagull
Yes, and a root, fifth and octave is still only two notes - everybody knows that a "powerchord" isn't actally a chord at all, it's just an interval.



a note and an octave is 2 notes a unison is 1 note.
Prs se Holcomb is the answer
Last edited by AcousticMirror at Jan 1, 2010,
#24
3 finger is fuller, 2 finger is heavier. 3 finger sounds good for rock, 2 finger sounds good for dark heavy metal.
#25
I prefer 3 tbh, I actually think its sounds heavier b/c its fuller.
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#26
Quote by AcousticMirror
a note and an octave is 2 notes a unison is 1 note.

No, Mark's got it 100% right. Root, 5th and Octave is only 2 notes. In the case of C you have C, G and C, two Cs and a G, two different notes. The second C is the same note at a different pitch.
You could correctly say that some power chords are made up of 3 different intervals but you cannot say it's made up of 3 different notes. A chord is required to have 3 different notes so no power chord is strictly a chord.
Oh and, it's perfectly legitimate to play a power chord as only root and 5th, the octave is added if you want a fuller sound... Sometimes you don't so you leave it out.
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#27
Quote by steven seagull
No, a powerchord is a root and 5th or multiples thereof

And all its inversions.
#29
A chord is usually made up of the 1, 3rd and 5th of a scale. Power chords are just the 1 and 5. It doesnt matter if you use 10 fingers, its the same chord if you only use 2 notes... 1 and 5. It sounds incomplete to a lot of musicians because ALL other types of music don't just leave out the 3rd. The 3rd is VERY important to a chord, so naturally music snobs will never call power chords a chord.

Want to freak people out with something they never hear from rock/metal guitar? Use 1 and 3 instead of 1 and 5 to make a chord and it sounds more natural and more full even with distortion on, assuming you know how to build tension. So if you were doing a G5 powerchord (3 on E, 5 on A) try a G with the 3rd in it, 3 on E (use your ring for that) and 1 on A (use index).

A good example of a metal song with this in it is Dethklok - Go into the water. They switch bettween 1-5 power chords and 1-3 chords and make it sound amazing.
#30
^I was actually playing some Coheed and Cambria (Welcome Home) which does the same thing, but I fail hard because my muscle memory doesn't know the "backwards" chord yet.
#31
Quote by AcousticMirror
A power chord is always 151. I guess I'm misunderstanding the question? Why would you ever play a three finger power chord and why would you ever play less then 3 notes with a 2 finger power chord? It's a single note and a 2 string barre....
I mean you can definitely play just a 1-5 but that isn't a power chord. And it has nothing to do with fingers

AcousticMirror, I am dissapoint.
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#32
usually when you use three fingers you want a higher chord, because the 3rd finger is the 1 finger just at a higher pitch. People use 2 because it sound darker and deeper.
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