Guitar Bar Chords Part Two – Lesson 16
Last lesson, we talked about bar chords as open chords that are played on higher frets, using the first finger as a substitute for the nut, essentially changing the notes of the chord. Bar chords are sometimes called “moveable chords” because of this feature.
A Position Bar Chord
The next chord we’ll learn, the “A Position Bar Chord”, is one of the trickier moveable bar chords, as it uses the first and third fingers for barring the notes. The “A” position chord is just as popular as the “E” position bar chord, and is essential learning for all guitar players.
The “C” bar chord in the “A” position is played by placing the first finger across all strings at the third fret. The only finger the first needs to actually push down, however, is the A5 string on the third fret. The third finger is used to fret the D4, G3, and B2 strings on the fifth fret. The tip of the first finger is used to “mute” or slightly contact the E6 string, so it doesn’t play. The bottom part of the third finger mutes the top E6 string, so it doesn’t play either. This can be a bit tricky at first.
The A5 string is the root note in this bar chord, and will determine the chord name based on the fret. In this case, the A5 string is played on the third fret, which is “C”, making the chord a “C major”. Take note that the lowest string played, “A” in this example, is not always the root in other types of bar chords.
Bar Chords Exercise
This exercise combines the “E” position bar chord from Lesson Fifteen, with the “A” position bar chord. Play each chord four times, on the designated fret:
Here’s a refresher view of the “E” position bar chord…