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The easier way to play a cowboy G riff on guitar

When you concentrate on not playing barre chords on guitar, things get a lot easier.

I, like so many other guitar players, started off playing just power chords, as in 5th chords. Two notes. And the majority of those are played on the 5 and 6 strings or 5 and 4 strings.

As I got better at guitar and learned more stuff, I started playing more chords. The "big" chord on guitar is the barre chord, where you anchor the thumb on the back of the neck and use all your fingers. I started using that quite a bit.

Years passed, I learned even more guitar stuff, and came to know that a few famous guitarists never bother with the 6 string. Some hardly even bother with the 5 and mostly concentrate on the 1, 2, 3 and 4 strings.

This is something I wanted to experiment with, so I did. The end result is that I found that I can get the musical idea I want to get across without chords that use all six strings.

I really like the full 6-string chord sound, but if I can get a full sound using fewer strings, I will certainly do it. The video above is an example of that.

There are two main benefits from playing this way. The first is that chords that use fewer strings are much easier to play. The second is that there are many times where playing the root note "on the bottom" isn't necessary.

I genuinely like playing this way as it suits the Telecaster well. But then again it would suit just about any guitar.

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