|Playing with a Capo||| Print ||
A capo is a device that is used on the guitar to allow the guitarist to play open chord formations in positions higher up the neck without having to play barre chords.
If you wanted to play this chord without having to barre it, you could use a capo. The capo would be "clamped" across the 5th fret in place of using the 1st finger. Then the "A" chord could be formed using the same fingering as you would an "E" chord in the open position.
The next diagram illustrates a "D" chord also played by barring the 5th fret. If, as in the previous example, you clamped a capo on the 5th fret in place of using the 1st finger as a barre, you could then play the "D" chord using the same fingering as you would an "A" chord in the open position.
Some capos have a "cut out" at one or more of the string positions to allow open strings to ring out while the capo is in place higher on the neck. There are capos that cover only three or four strings and every combination imaginable.
Keith Dean is founder of AdultGuitarLessons.com and a 30 year veteran of stage and studio. He toured extensively as a road musician throughout the US and Europe, was a former lead guitarist for Jason Aldean, and has shared stages with Little Big Town, Wild Rose, Winger, Confederate Railroad and more. He is a published songwriter, owned and operated a successful music store, and has instructed numerous students in guitar.