Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Two Finger G Chords for the Mandolin

Here is the full email, thank you Bob for the post.

"I appreciate your website with all those great guitar and mandolin chords. I have been playing fiddle for a few years and within the last year have taken up the mandolin. An old fiddler taught me the major two finger chords for the keys of G (on the two middle strings), D (on the E and A strings) and C (on the D and G strings) and I found that they transferred well to the mandolin. I will see if I can explain them to you.

The two finger G chords are found on the two middle strings; the D and A strings. To find the I (one) chord you fret the B on the A string and the G on the D string. The IV chord (or C Chord) is found by fretting the E on the D string and the C on the A string. The V (or D ) chord is found by fretting the F# on the D string and the D on the A string. If you draw this on the diagram of your mandolin fretboard you will see the pattern (the old fiddler used patterns a lot). Now, you can move that same pattern over to the A and E strings (directly across) and you have the three major chords for the D scale. Move it over to the G and D strings and you have the major C chords.

And, if you move the G chord patterns a couple of frets toward the bridge on the same strings you have the A major chords, etc., etc. You may already be familiar with these patterns, but if you are not I want to tell you that using them is an excellent way to teach mandolin two finger chords. Once a person gets that pattern in his/her mind you can get the chords to any key.

If this is about as "clear as mud" let me know and I will try to clarify it. The old fiddler just told us and as he did I would try to draw it out roughly on a fiddle diagram. Then, I would come home and make a nice copy of it. I have given a number of people copies of my diagrams; both fiddle and mandolin players."


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