#1
Hello everyone!

I am trying to play RHCP songs 100% accurate so I learnt John's chord playing from videos but i still struggle with one type of thumb-barre chord.

For example, pick barre chord E:
779997
EADGHE

Its very hard to recognize from videos, but I think he plays it just with thumb, point finger and ring finger.
X7999X
EADGHE
(thumb mutting bass E string, point finger on the 7th fret A string, and ring finger doing barre on the 9th fret - mutting E string)
It sounds right, but I don't want to learn something and than realize that it is completly bad.

Here is one of the best videos of John :
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q7o-9JuzlD4&feature=fvwrel

TIME!!!0:45!!!

It's hard to explain, but I can't post pic right now :-(

Thanks for any respond.

EDIT (I just realize he plays different chord in the video but that doesn't matter, it's a same style)
Last edited by harryharry at Jan 23, 2012,
#2
The thing about that style of music is that it's rarely performed exactly as it was recorded, they'll either be a bit sloppy or just intentionally add some variation depending on how they feel at the time. The two chords you listed are both the same they'll just sound slightly different - use your ear and determine what you prefer. When people say to play 100% accurate, they mean make sure you hit every note you intend to, not (necessarily) to play it the exact way it was recorded.

Also - notes only go up to G# :P
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Last edited by llBlackenedll at Jan 23, 2012,
#3
Are you German by any chance? I haven't seen an H used in notation for a while.

That style of playing chords eliminates the 5th before you reach the octave and third and finally 5th. It's just a slightly different voicing, less like a piano. I'd recommend learning as many voicings as you can to every chord.
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#4
Quote by llBlackenedll

Also - notes only go up to G# :P

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#6
I might not mentioned it correctly.

I just need to learn how to play the chord with my thumb over the guitar's neck. -> need to speed up chord progression in one of RHCP songs and its too slow to do regular barre

Do you think he is playing it as I mention in my first post? (thumb, point f and ring f)?
#7
Playing chords with the help of you thumb is more common that you would expect. I'd say, learn to do it, it's usually very useful
We should start calling it "The Fact of Evolution", theory, even though correct, does not work with the ignorant..
#8
Quote by Artemis Entreri
Learn something about the history of notation before you knock this guy.

Learn something new every day... I'd never seen that before (though clearly I also haven't studied the history of notation).

Interesting how you say it eliminates the fifth before the octave - are you saying that in an inversion such as the first example, where the fifth (B) is played on the 7th fret of the low E, that the root note (E, played on the 7th fret of the A string) is in fact the octave rather than the prime?
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#9
Artemis Entreri :

I am sorry. I always forget to write B instead of H.

Very close guess! I am from Czech Republic.
#10
Quote by harryharry
I might not mentioned it correctly.

I just need to learn how to play the chord with my thumb over the guitar's neck. -> need to speed up chord progression in one of RHCP songs and its too slow to do regular barre

Do you think he is playing it as I mention in my first post? (thumb, point f and ring f)?



Barre chords (thumb or otherwise) are the fastest way to play a harmonic progression since they're almost exactly the same shape for a variety of different chord qualities. If your'e having trouble playing quickly it sounds like you simply need to practice more.

That being said, the "thumb over neck" style typically uses the thumb to play the bass note, third finger to play the octave of it, middle to play the third and index to play the 5th.


Quote by harryharry
Artemis Entreri :

I am sorry. I always forget to write B instead of H.

Very close guess! I am from Czech Republic.



No, that's cool! I love seeing people that use the H! Whenever I do transcriptions of germanic composers I use the H to try and keep it alive.


Quote by llBlackenedll
Learn something new every day... I'd never seen that before (though clearly I also haven't studied the history of notation).

Interesting how you say it eliminates the fifth before the octave - are you saying that in an inversion such as the first example, where the fifth (B) is played on the 7th fret of the low E, that the root note (E, played on the 7th fret of the A string) is in fact the octave rather than the prime?


I was saying that if you thumb the B note on the 7th fret, OMIT the F# on the 9th fret of the A string, then play the triad B D# F# across the 4th, 3rd and 2nd strings that you've changed the voicing. The B is not only the notation root but also the acoustic root in this case. All it does is eliminate the root, 5th, root approach to the chord which has piano qualities.
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Last edited by Artemis Entreri at Jan 23, 2012,
#12
I play guitar over 10 yrs. I am very good at barre chords. But it is too slow to progres through regular barre to "thumb" barre.
#13
Just do how it suits you best, just because it works for John doesn't mean it works for you.

In regards to the video, yeah, he plays with his thumb.
We should start calling it "The Fact of Evolution", theory, even though correct, does not work with the ignorant..
Last edited by Blargaha at Jan 23, 2012,
#14
Quote by harryharry
I play guitar over 10 yrs. I am very good at barre chords. But it is too slow to progres through regular barre to "thumb" barre.

It's just a matter of practice then - it doesn't matter how long you've been playing, it matters how long you've been practicing going from a normal barre to a thumb barre.
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#15
Quote by harryharry
Guys, please. The original question.

0:45
Is John playing that "thumb" chord just with hist thumb, point finger and ring finger? (doing half barre with ring finger)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q7o-...&feature=fvwrel



Actually he's playing a suspension, same idea, except instead of play the root, third, 5th he's playing root, raised third (or 4th) 5th. So he's got his thumb on the bass note, I believe it's B in this case but I wasn't paying attention, then he's using his ring finger to barre the 4th and 3rd strings to create the suspension.
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#16
Quote by Artemis Entreri
I was saying that if you thumb the B note on the 7th fret, OMIT the F# on the 9th fret of the A string, then play the triad B D# F# across the 4th, 3rd and 2nd strings that you've changed the voicing. The B is not only the notation root but also the acoustic root in this case. All it does is eliminate the root, 5th, root approach to the chord which has piano qualities.


Unless I've got really confused here, I'm pretty sure the chords he showed (779997) are just simple E major variations - I see no F# there at all... It's B E B E Ab E (5th, root, 5th, octave, maj 3rd, octave). I'm not trying to argue I'm just genuinely confused.
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#17
Quote by llBlackenedll
Unless I've got really confused here, I'm pretty sure the chords he showed (779997) are just simple E major variations - I see no F# there at all... It's B E B E Ab E (5th, root, 5th, octave, maj 3rd, octave). I'm not trying to argue I'm just genuinely confused.


I was looking at the video which he kept linking, that's all. Let me look again.

Yeah, it's a Bsus4 at :45 in the video he linked.

I'm not even sure what he was writing. 779997 from bottom to top, the way he laid it out is what you said but the question he was asking about the video is a Bsus4.
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#18
Quote by harryharry
Guys, please. The original question.

0:45
Is John playing that "thumb" chord just with hist thumb, point finger and ring finger? (doing half barre with ring finger)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q7o-...&feature=fvwrel


why don't you just try it? i often play
E 0 or E x
A 7
D 7
g 6
b 0 or b 8
e 0 or e 8

for example.
try to shift open E, A, G, D or even C shapes on the neck and add or remove notes using pinky or thumb
#19
You guys seem to have gotten a little distracted.

Back to the original question it does indeed seem like that's what he's doing. For me that's how I naturally play those kinds of chords (I suppose it's become a habit). Do what's comfortable for you.

I either do what he does, or use my index finger on the 5th string, mute the low E (6th string) with that finger) and then place a full barre across the other 4 strings (in your case the 9th fret). I either try and mute the high E with that finger or just don't hit the string.

I find that more comfortable on the whole.
#20
Blargaha, DUV :

Thanks, thats what I wanted to know :-)

I don't know now yet what best fits to me, but I know that it's almost impossible with my regular sized hand to play it like this clear :
7 Point finger
9 Pinky
9 Ring
9 Middle
7 Thumb
7 Thumb

Topic solved, Thanks for answers! :-)
#21
You're very welcome
We should start calling it "The Fact of Evolution", theory, even though correct, does not work with the ignorant..
#22
Quote by harryharry
Blargaha, DUV :

Thanks, thats what I wanted to know :-)

I don't know now yet what best fits to me, but I know that it's almost impossible with my regular sized hand to play it like this clear :
7 Point finger
9 Pinky
9 Ring
9 Middle
7 Thumb
7 Thumb

Topic solved, Thanks for answers! :-)



That's not what he's playing in your video example.I may have misundersood that you weren't talking about the video but that's not what he's doing.

The "thumb, point finger (Sic) and ring finger" that he uses is to create a suspension. If you're trying to play triads you'll use either the full barre shape, the one Div mentioned, the "Hendrix" method of the thumb on the 6th string, ring on the 4th, middle on the third, index on the second or a variety of other shapes.
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#23
Crucify me if you want, but i dont understand the need to use the thumb..
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#24
Quote by Slashiepie
Crucify me if you want, but i dont understand the need to use the thumb..


me neither

surely its easier to play it

9 ring
9 ring
9 ring
7 index
7 index

the B on the 1st string isnt needed and imo doesnt even sound nice
#25
Playing the thumb over technique has it's benefits.

For example when doing A G chord at the third fret like:

3 (index)
3 (index)
4 (middle)
5 (ring)
x (muted by thumb)
3 (thumb)

By using your thumb on the low E it means your pinky is free to do any flourishes but the chord will sound the same. I don't see how it's massively helpful in what TS is discussing but I suppose it means your thumb doesn't move around too much.

TS - my thumb is too small to be fretting the 5th string comfortably. Just because your heroes might be able to you've got to do what's best and comfortable for you.
#26
He has ****in massive hands with long spidery fingers. I have small hands and I struggle to play like that. Some people just can't do it. I'm one of them.
#27
Quote by Artemis Entreri
Are you German by any chance? I haven't seen an H used in notation for a while.

That style of playing chords eliminates the 5th before you reach the octave and third and finally 5th. It's just a slightly different voicing, less like a piano. I'd recommend learning as many voicings as you can to every chord.


It's not only Germans who use that (although I think H came from Germany in the beginning), we Finns use it as well and it drives me nuts everytime my teacher goes: "Okay, and then he switches to Hb7 and...", as pretty much all the theory I know comes from reading English articles.
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#28
Quote by Duv
Playing the thumb over technique has it's benefits.

For example when doing A G chord at the third fret like:

3 (index)
3 (index)
4 (middle)
5 (ring)
x (muted by thumb)
3 (thumb)

By using your thumb on the low E it means your pinky is free to do any flourishes but the chord will sound the same. I don't see how it's massively helpful in what TS is discussing but I suppose it means your thumb doesn't move around too much.

TS - my thumb is too small to be fretting the 5th string comfortably. Just because your heroes might be able to you've got to do what's best and comfortable for you.


yeah but Im talking about this example
#29
John is notorious for using his thumb for the bass notes in chords.

If you try it night feel awkward at first but now I always add a bass note when I can. Just feels and sounds right.
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#30
I thought the same in the begining, but this technique has a many benefits. I have a long hands and it is uncomfortable for me to play regular barre chords while standing. My wrist aches as hell after longer performance. Moreover the "suspension" chords have really interesting soud (as Artemis said before). And the best advantage in my opinion is that you are able to progress extremely fast from rythm section to lead. You won't use it very often in modern genres (as much as power chords for instance), but It could be very useful in jazz/blues/funky guitar.

I also think that anyone is able to perform this technique after adequate training. I am training it for 2 months and now I think I am quite good at it. Although it is true that I have 10 in reach between thumb and pinky and those "spider fingers" as T7E said. :-D

This is for example the sickest guitar technique in my opinion :-D (just for fun, guitarist from czech band) : 0:45
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6gB5gULEC0E