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Movable Chords

Alternate A major

Page 67 Learning the Folk Guitar

Placing the 1st finger barre across the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th strings at the 2nd fret will produce an alternate form of the A major chord. The notes of the major triad (A, C#, E) are being fretted by the barre as opposed to being fretted by individual fingers.

Fretting the A major chord in this manner will not allow you to play the 1st string open. However, adding the 4th finger to the 1st string - at the 5th fret will give you an additional A note.

If you strum just the first four strings, you will play a closed chord (no open strings). Because closed chords can be moved up or down the fretboard, they are, also, known as movable chords.

A major - closed chord



Alternate A-7th Chord

Alternate A7th Chord

Here is an alternate form of the A7th chord. Form the 1st finger barre on the first four strings, then add your 3rd finger - to the 1st string- at the 3rd fret. The G note is the flatted 7th.

Alternate D-7th

Alternate D7th Chord

Here is a movable chord form. If you move the A7th closed chord up to the 7th fret, the chord becomes a D7th.

Notice the major triad with the added flatted 7th. You should only strum the closed portion of the chord.

Listen    "Moveable Chords" A7th to D7th


Forming alternate versions of chords will give you a variety of voicings for your accompaniments. The movement of notes within the various chord forms could add a harmony line to the guitar accompaniment that will

enhance the melody line you are singing.

Also, learning a variety of alternate chord forms will allow you to play a melody line and a chord accompaniment at the same time.


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