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FDP Forum / The Chop Shop / Playing lead while using capo...

super mario
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USA

tone to the bone no other way
Feb 19th, 2016 02:28 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I think I know the answer but want to get the "Chop Shop" gurus expert advice. In our church services a couple of times a month I get to do a duet with my wife (me on guitar and she on keyboards). Usually she plays in the keys of G, C, A or D - which keeps my playing relatively easy in terms of chording and scale riffs. Last week we were working in the key of Eb so I capo 1 and play key of D progression. When it came the scale s I went to the 11th fret (Eb note on the low E) and played the pentatonic from there. It sounded right and I guess it was a small revelation that the notes on the fretboard did not change even though they started a fret up - is this because of the fact that I did not change the standard tuning of EADGBE? Know its minor for many, but just seemed to really trigger a light bulb in this meager mind of a rhythm guy trying to add some lead color to his life.....

gdw3

LA-la-land, CA

Insert clever comment here
Feb 19th, 2016 05:04 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

Right. The capo only changes the open strings. The string tension is still (basically) the same, so once you fret a note, the distance is still the exact same between the fret and the bridge as if it weren't capo'd. So the pitch is the same.

Peegoo
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Eat. Sleep. Guitar.

Repeat
Feb 25th, 2016 05:15 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

"the notes on the fretboard did not change even though they started a fret up..."

The names of the notes stay the same no matter where the capo is on the neck. What changes is the names of the *chord shapes* you play. For instance:

You capo 1st fret (that's your "new nut position"), and you fret a D chord two frets up from that. You strum it, but it's not a D chord even though it's a D shape; it's actually an Eb chord because the notes making up the chord are that of Eb.

Play a Gmaj shape, and those notes make up the Ab chord.

Etc.

larryguitar19
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South Florida

larryguitar
Feb 25th, 2016 05:37 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

I'm a heavy user of the capo. But it's a mixed bag.

Pros--If you are comfortable with a lead scale out of a chord shape then you can simply move the capo up and down the neck and, as another poster aptly observed, 'reset the nut'. You can cover a lot of ground moving the G C and D shape up the neck.

Cons--I think the capo makes the guitar sound more plinky as you move up the neck. Also you are taking away some low notes for the lead scale.

I think the way to go is to stick with the 2nd and 3rd fret and learn the chord shapes and scales. The 2nd fret maintains the integrity to the marker dots. The 3rd fret gets you into flat and sharp chords and scales but the patterns are the same.

(This message was last edited by larryguitar19 at 07:47 PM, Feb 25th, 2016)

Peegoo
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Eat. Sleep. Guitar.

Repeat
Feb 25th, 2016 07:09 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

A capo way up the neck can also lend greater depth to a multi-guitar band's sound.

Playing the same chords one or two octaves up adds a sort of mandolin-like sparkle and pop to matching chords played lower down the neck by the other guitarist.

A good example of this is the intro to (and throughout) the tune Hotel CA.



larryguitar19
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South Florida

larryguitar
Feb 25th, 2016 09:51 PM   Edit   Profile   Print Topic   Search Topic

100% agree with Peegoo. I am in a band that sometimes does 3 acoustic guitars and that's exactly what we do.

FDP Forum / The Chop Shop / Playing lead while using capo...




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