As usual the O at the top means open strings etc. This chord is the F major chord. The 2nd and 3rd frets use the basic E major chord shape while the barring of the first fret raises the pitch by a semitone to F major. The name of the chord is determined by the note on the low E string, in this case the note is F, All of your basic chord shapes can be barred to form new voicings of chords so why not give them a try. When barring an A major chord shape you can use just two fingers, your first finger to barre and your third finger to form the chord shape - which is essentially a smaller bar. To practise bar chords, hold the bar chord shape without strumming, hold it for as long as possible then let go, rest two min and do it again, this time going for longer and so on. This helped me to master barre chords. Picking a Winner And now onto learning and using fingerpicking, as an exercise and incorporating it it into our song. This is the process of using your fingers on your picking hand to pick indivdual strings instead of just strumming a full chord. It can be used to create cool accompaniments and also melodies and harmonies combined. You can also just use a pick to pick individual strings rather than fingerpicking, more a matter of personal preference. The fingers on the picking hand are as follows: p - (thumb), i - (index), m - (middle), a - (anular), c - (little finger). The pattern of fingers we are using is p-m-p-i. Our picking pattern for the verse of the song is as follows
0 1 2 3 4 5 ||-|1|-|-|-|-| ||-|1|-|-|-|-| ||-|-|2|-|-|-| ||-|-|-|4|-|-| ||-|-|-|3|-|-| ||-|1|-|-|-|-|
The length of each note in this pattern is one crotchet (one quarter note). This picking pattern works as an accompaniment for a lot of songs and the song we're using it for this week is Lionel Richie's "Hello". This is an absolute fantastic song that works amazingly on acoustic guitar or if you get the settings right on your electric you can turn it very dark. It's also quite a slow song so it allows easy fingerpicking practice. So here's how the song is laid out. For the verses we'll use fingerpicking and for the rest of the song we'll use strumming and as you can see it also incorporates our bar chord. For strumming its really up to you, a nice slow strum is advised, even just single strums of the chord will do
Am G F G |----------|----------|----------|----------| |---1------|---0------|---1------|---0------| |-------2--|-------0--|-------2--|-------0--| |-----2----|-----0----|-----3----|-----0----| |-0--------|----------|----------|----------| |----------|-3--------|-1--------|-3--------| p m p i p m p i p m p i p m p i
The bridge is just a reiteration of the same chord progressions and it's worth noting that the final chord of the song is A major as it kind of sums up the song with its final playing. And those are the parts used in the song. Hope you enjoy playing it as much as I do. Feels good to be doing lessons again and the next one won't be as far away as this one was. You've learned barre chords, fingerpicking, how to adjust your action and a kickass song all in one lesson. Try using the bar chord equivalents of the chords in the song to get a feel for how they work and to hear the different versions of them, plus its great practise i.e. play G major using a Bar chord of the E major shape (hint - it's the F major one moved up two frets). And as usual any questions are welcome and I will do my best to answer them, also my profile has recordings of previous lessons on them so do check them out and add me while you're at it and check out my tabs. Peace. JP.
Verse (use fingerpicking) |Am / |G / |F / |G / | This is played five times for the verse. Pre-chorus (fingerpick all but the A major chord) |Am / |G / |F / |A / | Chorus (strummed) |Dm / |G / |C / |F / | |Dm / |F /E |F /G |Am /C | |Dm / |G / |C / |F / | |Dm / |F /E |F / |