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Guitar Diads or Double Stops

October 2nd, 2009 · 3 Comments

Hot For Chords

Today we are going to talk about
2 note chords.

This lesson is a bit longer than
usual but there are some suprises so
make sure you read the entire lesson.

Just as common chords made of three notes
are called Triads the 2 note chords
are call diads.

Two-string play, or more popularly called
double stops.

Another term that you will hear in musical
notation circles is diads.

So, basically double stops are referring
to when you’re playing an instrument
and playing two notes at a time,
while diads is a music theory term
talking about two notes on a musical staff.

Two note chords are also know as harmonies
because two notes played simultaneously
always make a harmony.

Even if the two notes are the same note
they are harmony and called unison harmony.

So what are common Diads or Double Stops.

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I like to play 3rds, 5ths, 6ths and 7ths.

This is an easy was to play chord/melody.

It may not be the fancy jazz chord melody
we usually think of but it can make your
playing more interesting.

So lets look at the thirds.

Here is a Gmajor scale harmonized in thirds.
E|——————————-
B|——————————-
G|–4–5–7–9—11–12–14–16–
D|–5–7–9–10–12–14–16–17–
A|——————————-
E|——————————-

There are two fingerings.
One fingering for the major 3rds:

The first, 4th and 5th harmonies.
I am referring to the tab sequence above.

Use your first finger on the G string
Use your second finger on the D string

One fingering for the minor 3rds:
The 2nd, 3rd, 6th and 7th

Use your first finger on the G string
Use your third finger on the D string

Practice this a couple of times.

When picking the notes I like to pick the D string
with my thumb and G string with
my first finger.

If you are using a pick then
use your second finger
on the G string.

After a while you can here the
Latin sound. And even can start
making the harmonies that
are often associated with the
trumpets in a mariachi band.

Think of the Song La Bamba:

Here is a tab of what I mean:

E|————————————
B|————————————
G|–4–4–9—9—11–11–11–9—11–
D|–5–5–10–10–12–12–12–10–12–
A|————————————
E|————————————

Play around with this and change
it to your taste and
the melody you have in your head.

The finger pattern I showed you works when
the lower note is on
the Low E string, A string and D string
or B string.

When you play the Lower note on
the G string the pattern changes:

I will use the Key of A major:
(G would start with open G and B strings)

E|—————————–
B|–2–3–5–7–9–10–12–14–
G|–2–4–6–7–9–11–13–14–
D|—————————–
A|—————————–
E|—————————–

There are two fingerings.
One fingering for the major 3rds:

The first, 4th and 5th harmonies.
I am referring to the tab sequence above.

Use your first finger on the G string
and B string.

One fingering for the minor 3rds:
The 2nd, 3rd, 6th and 7th

Use your first finger on the B string.
Use your secong finger on the G string.

As you can see by the two different forms
we have discussed you just need to add a 5th
and you have triads. But if you had
Project X you would have already known that.

I hope you enjoyed this lesson!
Next week I will havea nother lesson
on Hot for Chords!

Glenn

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Tags: Chords

3 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Angele Martin // Oct 14, 2009 at 11:52 pm

    If you want to play the guitar or write songs you will need to know something, at least, about guitar music theory. You could break down guitar theory down to the study of three elements: chords, scales and arpeggios. Scales come easily to some people but others find them difficult to learn and difficult to understand.

  • 2 Ricky Sharples // Nov 7, 2009 at 5:43 pm

    I always find it tricky trying to explain techniques like double stops in writing. This is a great lesson for beginners but playing what’s in the tabs with economy of movement is very important.

  • 3 How To Play Double-Stops On Guitar // May 29, 2012 at 11:45 pm

    [...] lesson on Guitar Diads or Double Stops has some tabs for double-stop [...]

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