#1
Good afternoon,

I am a fairly new guitarist, been at it about 2 years now, and play in a church praise group. We recently came across a piece of music that the pianist transposed down 4 half steps using the electric keyboard feature. I now have no idea what chords I should be playing. Can anyone help explain what process I can apply to find out the new chords? I would be very grateful!

Here is a picture of the first line of the music.

#2
Just look at your guitar and move 4 frets, which is: A#, G#m, Cm, F, A#, D#m, G#m
#3
So even though the pianist is moving down I move up on the fretboard? Is there any way to modify it with a capo to make it friendlier to play using the cord of G?

Thanks for the reply by the way!
#4
Hello!
I play in a praise band too, and this is a common problem for me aswell when playing with a keyboard or piano.
Every fret on your guitar's neck is a semi-tone, or as you put it, a half-step. All you need to do is move down 4 frets and you'll be playing in the same key.
It's maybe easier to transpose the chords, rather than thinking about moving down 4 frets while you're playing. So, the D chord would become Bb, Bm would be Gm, Em becomes Cm, A is F, and finally F#m is D.
If you want to use a capo to make it easier to play, I'd personally go for a capo on fret 6 and play the Bb in a first position 'E' shape.
Hope that helps!
#5
SoCalSound,

So I just move down 4 frets without a capo and play those chords? Thanks!

Forsythed,

What does 'E' shape refer to? Thanks for your great description on what I should do. Thanks!
#7
By 'E' shape I mean positioning your fingers how you would play an E chord in first position, like this -
e¦0
B¦0
G¦1
D¦2
A¦2
E¦0

Obviously, you'll play it relative to the capo. So you'll actually be playing this -

e¦6
B¦6
G¦7
D¦8
A¦8
E¦6

The capo acts as your index finger, meaning that instead of playing Bb as a barre chord, you play it like an 'E'!

The same principal works for all chords and notes. Like I mentioned how moving up or down the neck one fret changes the note by a half tone, moving a whole chord changes the chord. The easiest way to see that is with the chords 'E' and 'F' - If you play 'E', and then move the WHOLE shape up a fret, you get 'F', move it up again and it becomes 'F#' and so on.
It's easy enough to move up and down with barre chords as your finger acts as the capo, but I've recommended using a capo on the 6th fret so you can use 1st position shapes which (personally) I find easier to play.

Happy to help! If you have any more questions I'll be happy to help!
#8
Thanks for your help so far. Could you help with this song? The pianist again wants to go down 3 half steps so I am not sure what to do with the capo and what chords to play. Down on the guitar when already at the first fret is impossible as moving down the neck is actually moving up register. Thoughts?
#9
Of course you could downtune, so it's not IMpossible, just a pain in the ass.
These chords transcribed would be:
F#m, D, F#m, C#, F#m, C#, F#m
Capo at the fourth fret:
Dm, Bb, Dm, A, Dm, A, Dm.
But i don't know if that would simplify it a whole lot.
You'd just get rid of 1 extra bar chord.