Too many notes, not enough fingers! How can I keep bass note while playing this arpeggio? ? shows the fret I cannot reach because I use index finger to play bass note. I have tried to barre index finger across frets 7 and 8 but I'm not sure if this is right approach here.

  • what's the source? is it from a magazine, official sheet music, on-line tab? Mar 3, 2014 at 23:23
  • 1
    Keep trying with the angled barre, it is the only way to play this with the bass note sustained.
    – Fergus
    Mar 4, 2014 at 4:08
  • @Fergus I tried that, but I've got an acoustic steel string, so I found it impossible to play cleanly/without killing the D on the 3rd string. Is it playable/clean on nylon strings? Mar 4, 2014 at 15:13
  • @Fergus also, add the angled barre as an answer soon, or I'm stealing it for myself :P Mar 4, 2014 at 15:14
  • @AlexanderTroup Feel free to steal it ;) I think it really comes down to how much you've practiced angled barres, the guitar (FB radius, action, string gauge etc) and to some degree your finger size/shape. I can do it comfortably on all my guitars but they are all well set up and have fret board radius (ie not classical) and I have large hands and have practiced angled barres for a few years.
    – Fergus
    Mar 5, 2014 at 4:56

3 Answers 3


You could possibly use an angled barre chord, where you use your index finger on both the 8th fret on A, and the 7th fret on B.

I am aware that this is a weeeeird technique, and I'm not all that familiar with it. I read about it in a book called Chord Chemistry by Ted Greene, and the article here even calls it the Ted Greene chord.

It is quite a tricky technique, and I think each person's individual hand proportions affects how easy they are to do, but I've asked a question to try and get some more info about them: How do you play barre chords which are at an angle?


I don't see any way to finger that chord other than using the index for the bass note, and I don't see any way to play the arpeggio other than using the index finger on G string fret 7, so I don't see how you could keep the bass note ringing.

If you MUSt keep the bass note and don't mind changing the octave of one of the other notes, then you could play the higher D (E string fret 10) instead of that mid D (G string fret 7), or the lower D (open D string). That way you don't even have to move your hand from the original chord position...


I think the easiest (and also the most musical) way would be to leave out the high f (10th fret G string), because it's just the octave of the bass note and does not add any color to the chord. So you simply play the following chord (from low E to high E):

X 8 X 7 9 10

Then everything can ring out during the whole arpeggio (except the original high f, of course, but nobody will miss it.)

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.