Basic Acoustic Guitar Lesson #5
Using the D chord to learn more bar chords
Basic – Intermediate guitar lesson: D form barred chord
In earlier lessons we learned many of the open chord forms, C,A,G,E,D — and now we will learn the D form variants to learn how to move this form up and down the fret as a bar form chord. Becoming a better intermediate or advanced player requires that you master the fundamentals of chording, strumming, and perhaps picking while being able to switch comfortably and effortlessly between chords. In order to be the best beginner acoustic guitarplayer, be sure to stick with the challenges until they become your strengths. Playing what comes easily to you might be more fun at first, but you may soon plateau and get discouraged that you are no longer growing in your acoustic guitar and musical skill sets.
What can the D chord do for me in the future?
The D form bar chord is a great resource for future electric or lead guitar playing on acoustic, as many arpeggios and riffs can be understood and easily played from this form to accompany other guitarists or to play a unique lead or melody improvisation line.
Recall the common D chord.
Recall the D chord we learned earlier in lesson 3. You can refer back to that lesson to see the video or read about it. Please refer to the chart on this page as we move through D learning a few variations necessary to play D up the fretboard.
Remember that the standard D chord starts with fingers 1 and 2 on strings 3 and 1 on the second fret. Then the 3rd fingertip is added to the second string, 3rd fret. This is the common D chord, which forms a triangle with these 3 fingers.
Alternative D chord forms to build the D form bar chord
Next, practice the 2 alternate forms of the common D chord with the alternate fingering and the bard fingering. Instead of using fingers 1, 2 and 3, you will used fingers 2, 3, and 4 respectively. For the barred D chord, start with this alternate D chord and replace fingers 2 and 3 on the second fret by barring strings 1, 2, and 3 of the second fret. This is a barred, D chord.
Next, you can play Eb (E flat) by sliding this barred D chord up 1 fret (toward the body of the guitar) and using your index finger or finger # 1 to bar strings 1, 2, 3, and 4 of the first fret. Congratulations, you just played a barred D chord form to create the Eb chord on your acoustic guitar. If you slide this form up one more fret toward the guitar body, you will have an E major chord. Also, be sure that you are only strumming or picking strings 1 through 4 as strings 5 and 6 are not a part of this chord form.
Continue practicing this form all over the fretboard and try to figure out which chords are located at different spots. One way to determine this is to play the root string (the 4th string) and then find out which note that represents. The root of this bar chord form will reveal the name of the chord. Also, continue previous lessons and learn to switch between all of the chords we have learned, including bar chords until you become very comfortable with playing them on demand.
About the Author: This lesson on beginner acoustic guitar playing was provided by Aaron Schulman, an avid guitar player, teacher and enthusiast for over 20 years. Before buying your first guitar, be sure to check out his reports to thoroughly learn how to buy an acoustic guitar at strumviews.com, a great place for honest acoustic guitar reviews.