View Full Version : Chords
Hello, I am new here and new to the mandolin. I play guitar and bass, so I have a good amount of string experience. I am wondering how often you people use chords that only use 3 strings. Do you mute the other string or do you just avoid strumming it? I find it hard to skip a string when I am trying to chop.
I often use 3 note and 2 note chords (double stops) and sometimes mute the the extra string and sometimes just make sure I miss it with my right hand.
As to your difficulty skipping a string when choping I almost always try to voice my chop chords on the A,D, and G strings to get that nice low end 'chunk' and in most cases don't have any problem missing the E string. When playing chop chords I also try to play them so the notes can't really be heard, just a nice percussive 'chunk' sound. I don't really see it as a strum, just letting the weight of my hand falling provide the motion.
When choping a 3 finger chord I will mute the E string (usually with my first finger). The sound of the chop will without a doubt drowned out the sound of a muted E string.
When I do a 3 finger C chord, for example, I pretty much naturally mute the E string. The further up the neck I go the more I need to think about muting the E, but normally it just happens. And as with most anything else, it becomes muscle memory at some point.
I use 3 finger chops all the time. When playing in G, I prefer to switch to a 3 finger D chord instead of the 4 finger chord. Same thing in A and so on.
I have arthritis so I play a limited number of three finger chords that don't have a long stretch and almost never use my pinky or play four finger chords. Some things I do aren't by the book but I have to do what is comfortable for me. #I mute the E string and just try to miss the G string on three finger chords.
3 string chords are a way of life for me. I often avoid the E course when playing rythm because I feel notes that high tend to draw attention to themsleves. As a rythm player I am trying to lay down the groove and blend. When I want to add a florish or do something to attract attention I may add the forth string.