6

Should you "barre" fingers 1 and 3, so 1 covers the lowest pitch note and 3 covers the higher 2, or should you use 1, 3, and 4 to play them?

  • I've found it to be personal preference more than anything. Whatever you can effectively mute the other strings with is ideal. Find what works for you. However I've found that longer fingers in general allow you to do a more traditional "barre" defined by classical traditions. Smaller hands/fingers tend to like a three-finger approach. – user6164 Jun 12 '15 at 0:48
  • There is no correct answer to this. Both answers are correct. This is the land of opinion, and both skills are nice to have. – amalgamate Jun 12 '15 at 14:09
  • You can also play these with a single finger bar in drop D tuning. – amalgamate Jun 12 '15 at 14:10
  • I find that I have started to use 123 for my fingering because it helps with muscle memory for when I need to do minor 7 barre chords – Unknown Oct 20 '16 at 20:09
4

While either are correct, there are subtle differences for each fingering that can be taken advantage of especially when going from power chord to barre chord. You can and should take advantage of the different types of fingerings.

The 1,3,4 fingering for power chords let's you take advantage of the E major, E minor, A minor, D major, and D minor shaped barre chords.

The 1,3 fingering for power chords let's you take advantage of the A major shaped barre chords.

There is another finger for power chords that is 1,4 that can be used on the G string and is optimal for making a mini G shaped barre chord.

So if you know you're going to be playing a mix of barre chords and power chord the fingering you use can help you greatly. I know out of habit I always finger power chords on the E string as 1,3,4 and on the A string as 1,3.

3

For rock blues and metal styles (thumb up top) the only time you should barre is with power chords with the root on the G string (144).

All other 3 note power chords are 134 with the exception of the sixth string root which may be T34.or 134. Which is a matter of preference.

The important part is muting the unplayed strings. The index finger must mute any unplayed strings thinner than the ones played, and usually one string fatter (unless it's a sixth string root). Don't worry about the convenience of changing to another type of chord. Always use the best sounding and least physically stressfull fingering of the one you are playing.

0

It depends on what else is going on. If nothing, then I use 1,3,4. But sometimes you're playing variations so you'll bar and use your free fingers to find the variations.

In short, if you're accurate with the pick and mute the strings not being played, then it doesn't matter... heck, some guys bar just because it leaves the middle finger free and they think it's funny to flip everyone off.

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