North Fremantle Guitar Lessons

Energy Efficiency with Power Chords

Economy with Movement

  •  30 November 2018
  •  18
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HEY JOE was written by J J CALE and made really famous and popular by JIMI HENDRIX.

I use the song to demonstrate a few things, one of which is how to work out where to play your power chords.

This also extends to BARRE chords.

THE PROBLEM

  1. We want to play a bunch of POWER CHORDS...
  2. ...Somewhere on the neck...
  3. ...In a certain sequence

One method might be to play them wherever you find them. This might work out alright, but it is kinda relying on the CHORD GODS to be nice to you...

SOLUTION

We are going to map out the power chords for the:

  • 6th string, and the
  • 5th string

Then see if we can spot nice pretty patterns to make it:

  1. Easy to remember
  2. Easier to play

PROCESS

Chords sequence for the song:

  • C / G / | D / A / | E / / / | E / / /
Chords for the Song Hey Joe

POWER CHORDS

We are going to play this song using POWER CHORDS. Generally speaking we play power chords on either the 6th or the 5th string.

The root notes for the chords are at these frets:

6th sting:

  1. C = 8
  2. G = 3
  3. D = 10
  4. A = 5
  5. E = 12*

5th string:

  1. C = 3
  2. G = 10
  3. D = 5
  4. A = 12
  5. E = 7*

* no open strings for this exercise

The FRETBOARD NOTES diagram helps me with this. Make sure you download it.

If you play the power chords only on the 6th string you will zig-zag up and down the neck.

The Same goes for the 5th string.

This can get messy and confusing.

MAKE IT EASY, OR K.I.S.S.

Using at the two lists, start with the note C on the 6th string, the first number is:

  • 8

So for the next chord, G, I look in the two lists for the number closest to 8:

  • 3
  • 10

10 is closer to 8 than 3 is so the answer is of course, 10.

So my sequence has now become:

  1. 6th string, 8th fret
  2. 5th string, 10th fret

I keep going through the list. Next up is the D chord:

  • 10
  • 5

The answer is of course, 10.

So my sequence has now become:

  1. 6th string, 8th fret
  2. 5th string, 10th fret
  3. 6th string, 10th fret

And on it goes...

By simply writing out my options and putting them in to a logical order I can make it easier to remember and easier to play.

Sequence starting on the 6th string

  1. 6th string, 8th fret
  2. 5th string, 10th fret
  3. 6th string, 10th fret
  4. 5th string, 12th fret
  5. 6th string, 12th fret

Sequence starting on the 5th string

  1. 5th string, 3rd fret
  2. 6th string, 3rd fret
  3. 5th string, 5th fret
  4. 6th string, 5th fret
  5. 5th string, 7th fret

 Have a go yourself and check your results with mine