alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

Can anyone tell me where i can get the tabs for alternative chord positions up the neck for the standard chord runs played in standard tuning for trad backing, e.g. Em D C D Am Bm C D as im getting a bit bored playing these chords in first or second position. I know theres DADGAD and Dropped D but i like Standard EADGBE and can back very well in this tuning but just want more variety of chords up the neck.

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

It’s kind of fun to make your own and it’s not that difficult. You should try it. Start with the basic three notes that make the chord, find them up the neck, see if by doing that you can incoroporate any open strings without f-ing up the chord. Get rid of that one goofy note in every major chord (that doesn’t seem to fit a lot of Irish tunes example-the G# note in E major )and off ya go! You can even keep the the G# if it fits the tune.
….or I’m quite sure someone will soon be here with tons of theory, charts, graphs, links and talk of mixolodidian oxycottinian and megalamanian modal stuff for ya ta chew on!

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

You might want to learn how to play the guitar. Do that, and you’re set.

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

Click on my user name, and look at the article in my profile, there are a few ideas there.
Most guitar stores sell charts that show a wide variety of ways to shape chords in standard tuning.
And Jon, why the grumpy reply, I think the question is proof that the poster does want to learn to play the guitar better.

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

wow!, earlier was going to suggest drawing yourself a map of the notes on the guitar, then creating chord diagrams from that. You can map out 7 diatonic chords for each common key. and include voicings for Vminor7 V9, VII9, Iminor7, and iminor7.

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

I used to do this with graph paper when i was learning guitar. Eventually chord patterns are just there, of course on guitar they are different for every key because of the odd interval from the G to B string. In standard tuning there really are only three chord shapes. the E shape, the A shape and the D shape. these can all be played major or minor with no difference in difficulty. If you know the order of major to minor diatonic chords for a major key then you don’t need to draw out each chord, unless you want to remember certain chords you stumble across accidentally, or plan out differently voiced chords for a particular song or tune, to follow a melody. the order is I ii iii IV V vi vii’ ,…where lowercase letters are minor chords and capital letters are Major chords the last chord vii’ is diminished which is two minor thirds stacked on top of each other. because the interval between vii and ii is a minor third and so is the interval between ii and IV. the vii chord can be used as dominant chord leading to the final tonic chord but the V chord or V7 chord is more often used. this is a substitution for a chord a third away. usually chords that are only a third away can be substituted for one another, this is a typical case. Oh I don’t have diagrams, cause I don’t know how to draw them out in this text format.

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

Learning to play the guitar, like learning to play any instrument, involves knowing where the notes are to be found.
If you do that, you know all of the voicings, because they are transparently derived from the locations of the notes.

So, as I say, if you learn how to play the guitar, you’re set.

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

A favorite up-the-neck Em chord:

|———0————
|———0————-
|———9———-
|———9————
|———7————-
|———0————

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

Jon Kiparsky - until Michael comes back, You the Man.

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

Ah. The Man, Junior, you mean?
The vice-Man?

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

Yo! Kiparsky! You the Vice Man!

dunno - doesn’t have the same impact - even when I pronounce it "da Vaaas May-un"

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

Whos this smart alec Jon. I can play the guitar and very well thanks, but was hoping to get some useful new chords to play even better. Thanks you other guys

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

fidkid, that’s an E5 "chord" - the notes being EEBEBE.
I often use that chord in place of E major as well as E minor (that’s because it’s a 5 chord).
For a true Em I’ll use 079000 or 075000 or 079x80 or 12x121200 (Em7) or the like.

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

If I’m playing in A I might use
x76500 for A, x57700 for D and 077700 for E. (A, D69(no3rd) & E7sus4)

If I’m playing in D and want a D-Bm-Em-A progression I might use
x57700 for D, 7x7700 for Bm, 075700 for Em and 57x700 for A. (D69(no3rd), Bm11, Em7 & A9sus4)

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

To go back to shanty’s post……..
……..precisely WHICH irish tune in E major were you thinking of ?
I didn’t realise there was one, ever, at all.
E MINOR, yes, you don’t want a G sharp.

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

..oh, and somewhere on the web there’s a whole website of people’s cats sitting in mandolin cases.
They are really cute.
My cats have been known to sit in my bouzouki case.

Seriuos advice…

WOTTEFFAH you do avoid K blunt flattened 17th.

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

Guernsey Pete- not saying there’s a tune in E major, I’m saying that THAT note used in an E maj.(transpose to any major chord you want) a lot of times doesn’t fit. That’s why to me DADGAD suits better because it somewhat eliminates that note.

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

And yes as soneone explained a while back, without that 3rd note it’s not a chord it’s only a triad, yes I get that….the point is that figuring out backing chords isn’t that hard and doesn’t take a vast array of music theory, although a vast knowledge of theory would certainly help to explain it!!!

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

Diad? maybe, triad would be three?!@#$@!!! playing it’s just so much easier!!!!!!!!!!

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

E major - needed for the "correct" versions of Andy deJarlis and Calliope House. Not Irish, I grant you, but played frequently enough at sessions.

Then again, there’s always the capo.

Posted by .

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

Hey gilbarry3, try to ignore the douche bags who think they own "the tradition" and respond with useless and annoying comments. There are really only a few of them. Most of the people here are good kind folk and will help if they can.

I wish I could help but I can’t play guitar worth a damn. I gave it up and traded mine for a banjo. For me, following the melody is relatively easy. Backing is what’s hard!

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

Yikes! DBs, Fishmonger? Such strong language for a bit of slagging. Tsk. Tsk. No biscuit.

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

I agree Fishmonger, these guys huh….

Thanks fidkid and DonaldK for your tab chords, thats exactly what im looking for, more of these chords very welcome.

BTW, Im Irish and so have a good natural feel for the rythms and melodies of trad music and i love backing. Its just that sometimes i ‘know’ what sound of chord i want but some of the standard chords i know doesnt fit and so im looking to increase my chord vocabulary.
My music theory isnt the best (i usually play by ear a lot) so working out the chords is a bit tricky (plus im a tad lazy) which is why im looking for help in learning new chord voicings. I would be willing to look at DADGAD if i had a good few chords for this also. Cheers

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

No guys, come on now. Llig would say: "Why not just play a proper instrument? Does the world really need more strummers?"

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

Fish - I’d rather not be called a douchebag, if you don’t mind too much. Much more productive, perhaps, to explain why you want to cripple the lad by sending him to a session unprepared to cope. If you’re a fiddler, you don’t want to have to stop and say "Hang on, let me look up how this FAAB AFED is fingered". Why shouldn’t a guitarist learn their instrument properly?

Tossing someone a handful of "alternative voicings" is no help to them. It’s just a way of avoiding the work of learning to play. "A tad lazy"? Sure, we all are. But it’s not difficult, and it saves you a lot of work in the long run.

And when you’ve done the work, you have the whole guitar at your disposal, and can play whatever it is that your ear tells you needs to be played.

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

"Does the world really need more strummers?" YES (he said sarcastically).

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

Moving on to another thread now…

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

No. The world needs less strummers.

Since when does being Irish have anything to do with having a natural feel for the rhythms? There are plenty of Irish people who are completely tone deaf and rhythmically challenged (I used to date one) and plenty of people from everywhere else on the planet who have an amazing feel for the rhythms and melodies.

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

The world needs more GOOD strummers! These kinds of threads can only help, good on y’all. (You like that? "Good on y’all"? Just cooked that up. It’s Hiberno-Dixie English.)

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

Ha ha, oh yes, the old racial music thing again, missed that, good call SS. Silly piece of nonsense, that.

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

Where the feck ARE all those good strummers? I can’t find them half the time. :(

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

HA! They can help themselves! It’s not impossible!

Are you a strummer in need of help? Wondering what to do in order to become a beloved ‘good’ strummer in the eyes (and ears!) of mustard board dwelling pipers in Scotland and fiddlers in Florida?

Scroll back up to AlBrown and click on his name. Read. Then, read again. Then, read again! Rinse, lather, repeat!

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

yer mate done made up a new vernacular - impressive!

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

.".precisely WHICH irish tune in E major were you thinking of ?
I didn’t realise there was one, ever, at all."

Altan plays a tune in F# dorian, which is the key signature of E major, it’s called JB’s, or the JB, or J.B. or something to that effect.

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

Right! Fewer strummers and more player pianos
Piano Players!

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

Ah thanks yuhs, airport. [bows]

I’m a bit concerned about poor faxucelt. You know how it is with us Yanks and them there cowboy movies. The poor piano player is always getting shot. [shakes head sadly]

More help for confused strummers:

Google this: site:thesession.org iris nevins

Click on every Discussion you can find and read her words of wisdom!

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

The more serious replies here are mostly helpful, depending, of course, on your level of skill, and your ability to experiment.

I find that backing is about finding your own voice on the guitar, then finding others who like your voice. It may take a long time for you to discover your voice, but remember that it’s a learning process and will change over time. Voicing is important. So is tension and release. If you find an interesting chord position that you like, try to find a place to use it - it may work, or not. Logic doesn’t always render the best sound, so it’s helpful to try out what you think sounds good.

There’s no getting away from the fact that to play this music you have to know the tunes, whether the tunes are in your head or you can flat pick them, or even play them on another instrument. You’ll find that there’s a lot more you can do if you know the landscape and intimacies of the material.

Here’s a good site that can help you with positions, chord names, and possibilities on the guitar neck:

http://www.gootar.com/folder/guitar.html?result2=G%23+C+F+x+C+D%23+x++x++

As to the E major tune, try Matt the Thrasher. (A major modal tune, really, but none the less in E).

Keep practicing

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

i thought this was a serious trad music site. Are you always this patronising Jon, who do you think you are with your ‘crippling the lad by sending him into a session unprepared to cope’. I can cope very well in a session thank you, im just looking for more chords whats wrong with that. So you’re perfect yourself are you, stopped learning yes? i think not.

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

Hi DonaldK. Those chords you gave me were usefuk, i knew a few of them but rest were good. Have you any more e.g. for Em D Am Bm C D run or D G A A7 D or other runs that are good
Much appreciated

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

What’s wrong with that is that you’re treating the guitar as if it were an autoharp without the buttons. It’s annoying. It’s the sort of thing that means I flinch when a guitar player walks into a session, because too many people think that you just need to "know some chords" - as if there were nothing of interest in the ways those chords are made up or how they relate to each other, or how they relate to the tunes.
Next you’ll be asking for "the chords to the Bank of Ireland" - as if that were a sensible question! - and wondering why people get so hot under the collar about it.

Show some curiosity! You’re a human being, and curiosity is the only argument against misanthropy. If you don’t care about music, leave the guitar alone and go do something you care about, something you’re curious about, something you care to learn about. Or do something you don’t care about, as long as you can do it silently without annoying people who are just trying to play some music.

Feh. This is useless. Okay, here’s a chord for you.
Am7, third inversion, closed voicing
X 10 10 9 10 X

Enjoy.

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

Jon, As I said before, cut the guy a break, he is asking questions because he wants to get better.
And maybe, if all of us unwashed masses work real hard, and keep asking questions, we will reach the point you apparently have already reached, the point where we know we have all the answers!
;-)

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

Okay, Al, I’ve given up. Here, here’s another chord:

Em, flat 6, second inversion:
X X 9 9 8 8

Let me know when any of these help.

(All the answers? No, if you want all the answers, ask this guy: http://tinyurl.com/yehv5us )

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

gilbarry3—i ‘know’ what sound of chord i want but some of the standard chords i know doesnt fit and so im looking to increase my chord vocabulary—-I’m sure there’s plenty of DADGAD websites online. Maybe that’s the ‘sound’ you’re looking for. It’s pretty popular for this kind of music.

As an aside, I could sense that there’d be trouble on this thread….hence the TABBY. I see it did no good and the mood turned ugly….a sad sad state of affairs………oh my…..

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

Jon, When people point out to you that you are being unpleasant, perhaps you need to rethink this whole tactic of becoming even more unpleasant. I have never heard you play, but from your postings, I am sure you are a better guitarist than I will ever be, even if I devote the rest of my earlthly life to the task. But that does not give you the license to be rude to people who come here for help. This website is clogged with far too much of that behavior.

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

for the record I thought jon’s first post was funny:). Laugh and move on….

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

Seems reasonable to me, Shanty. Time for moving on. One more drop 2 voicing for the road:

D-flat m7, flat 5: X 4 5 4 5 X

Throw that one in just anywhere, gilbarry. It’s the universal chord of Irish music. It’s a secret, though, don’t let on it was me that told you.

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

Did you get out of the wrong side of bed, Jon, or have you been sucking a sloe?
gilbarry3, the chord shapes I might use for your Em D Am Bm C D run would depend on the tune. But I have to say I would very rarely use Am Bm C D - much more likely to use G/B in place of the Bm.

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

But that’s just a personal preference.

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

SS I’m here in Angers
(see Above )

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

I miss having you just down the road in Newcastle. :(

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

So, what Jon was trying to say is, it’s more useful to learn to figure out chord voicings for yourself than to simply learn shapes.
(Unfortunately, he said it in a flippant manner, such as to ridicule the original poster.)

The original poster didn’t actually say explicitly that he couldn’t already do that, just that he was looking for some alternative chord shapes - perhaps just to see if there were any he hadn’t thought of.

Have a cup of tea, Jon.

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

…and gilbarry3

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

To get back to the original post, you’re getting bored playing chords because playing chords is boring. Learning different ways of playing the same chords will not help.

You can start to make it interesting by finding imaginative ways to get from one chord to the next. This might eventually lead you towards a style that relates more to the directions that the tune takes and does not get bogged down by being restricted to diads and triads.

It’s the tune that matters, not thechords.

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

Wo there mules…… this is getting WAY too heavy. All i wanted was to learn more ways of playing chord sequences, not start WW3…….
For the record, ive been playing guitar for years and i love playing. I mainly play rythm guitar but not just chords, i use the pick a lot to pick out single note runs in and around the chords.
I think i have a good feel for the music (not necessarily Silver Spear coz im Irish but it certainly does help growing up with all that music around me, just like some of you American folk would likely have a great feel for bluegrass if you grew up in Kentucky or Alabama - incidentally i really love bluegrass) and
i was told recently by other trad musician that i play extremely well and that i was the best backer he ever played with and he is a non purist non snobbish multi-instrumentalist(not blowing my own trumpet but trying to establish that assumptions are very dangerous).
I know Jon that i should try and experiemt more but we all dont have the same gifts……it must be hard, and lonely, being so perfect…….hee hee

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

I am from Colorado, a state where bluegrass is pretty popular (far more so than Irish), and I can assure you I have zero feel for it. If you have the music around you, sure, that helps, but you still have to tune into it and seek it out to be able to play it, no matter what country you are from.

I’ve also been called a purist, a snob, and I’m definitely not a multi-instrumentalist. :)

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

Oh I dont know I am sure the french horn has its uses , SS

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

You know you are using the right inversions/ voicings if your trousers don’t need changing too often.
Correct wig glue selection is proportionate to chord choice.
I’d onlt attempt a backing on the french horn whilst wearing my pin striped Burton’s suit.

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

for Gawd’s sake! ‘only’!

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

DaveL35 I think you’ve got it spot on. Also, with all this talk about chords etc. it’s easy to forget about the right hand. I think this is the most important end of guitar playing. Gilbarry3 I haven’t heard you play, so please forgive me if I’m preaching to the converted, but if you’re looking for different approaches to backing, the right hand is a good place to look. it starts with freedom: relaxation of the shoulder, wrist and hand, and aiming not to have your right hand resting on the guitar body. Then you can look at the way you grip the plectrum to change/improve your tone. All this will give you more freedom and confidence to experiment with rhythm, syncopation and harmony. Learning how to use your right hand properly is a life-long pursuit (same for fiddle players). Learning new chords is the easy part.

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

a few more with some open strings

X02600 A maj add 9
X02500 A min add 9
10 X 0 7 10 10 D no 3rd

the more you look, the more you find

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

If Pat Egan is back at Catskills Week, take his course, he is one of the few holdouts that play really great in standard tuning. He’s super. You will learn a lot!

I have to keep pretty silent here, having abandoned standard tuning over three decades ago for Dropped D for backing and DADGAD for tunes.

Not a strummer here… I barely know what to do with a flatpick. It’s not safe to assume that all players are chord strummers. For me, guitar was first a melody instrument. Certainly not an autoharp without buttons or a six stringed bodhran. It’s a really complex melody instrument if one explores it in depth.

Won’t get lengthy, but it seems all good backing, including piano, contains the key melody notes of the particular tune, in between any chording, so you really have to know the tunes to make a good job f it. And that too, is the fun of it. Some of us lowly guitar players actually take the time to not only learn the tunes as a melody player does, but also to really be decent, you should make a study of each different melody player’s phrasing, and adapt fully as possible to it. Then the whole sound meshes really well.

It’s not only about chord charts and keys…. I like Joel’s ideas on right hand too.

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

yes i agree with all that iris and i do study the melody of the tunes that i am playing to the extent that i can hum the melody and teach fiddle players a tune they are not familiar with and i do use the pick to emphasise the main notes and feel of the melody abd im aware of phrasing in my strum rhytm to co-incide with the tune. and i agree that knowing more chords in and of itself wont make for a better backer. But having said all of that, you cant back well if you dont know enough chords to hang the melody from. BTW that ‘autoharp without buttons’ comment (made by our good encouraging friend Jon) is very patronising and insulting to decent guitar players. we all want to play well or we wouldnt find ourselves on this website, so i think that if someone hasnt any positive constructive comment or suggestion to make on these threads they should stay off them and go annoy/patronise someone else……..Now i feel wonderfuk having got that off my chest, i can go to work now (its 8.50am here in the Emerald Isles….catcha ya all later

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

"Now i feel wonderfuk having got that off my chest"
Sublime typo, just sublime.

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

Thanks a mil Donaidh for that chord chart, i’ll be trying them there chords out tonight on me HD28….yup !!!

Yes that was a wonderful freudean slip :-)

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

Are you sure that was a typo JohnDSamuels?

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

p.s. Donaidh what a great name for a trad musician Riddle Fiddles. Is he a fiddle player ?

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

Gilbarry3, you seem to have the right ideas and to know what you are doing so you can safely ignore Jon Kiparsky’s comments and pay attention to irisnevins’ good advice.
Iris’ suggestions and advice make sense to me and I am not even a guitar player—I play piano at the our local sessions.

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

Toppish is correct when he (or she) states that you must know the tunes to play this music. I have found that to be true many times over. Although I don’t play melody at the local sessions and just accompany the other musicians, I have still found it to be very helpful to me to try to play through the tunes when I am at home.

And, Swiffle (otherwise known as SWFL Fiddler and Ian), three out of three psychiatrists have all told me that I beyond psychiatric help so I would advise you not to worry about me. All three of these psychiatrists have been some of my musical partners-in-crime for many years so they are all well-acquainted with me by now.

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

What is wrong with suggesting someone should take the time to work out their own chords? You will get a much better feel for the music and a greater ability to hear what chords to play and what notes to add or take away if you know what notes go into a chord and where they are all located on the fretboard. This is how I started learning DADGAD, as opposed to standard tuning where I learnt chords as shapes on the neck. Rather than learning that this is a D and this is a G surely it is better to be able to create your own chords? Working from basic charts is fine if you are just starting out, gilbarry3 but you are clearly already a very good guitarist. You must be. You say you are. Therefore you should be able to work them out for yourself.

That being said there are a multitude of websites that provide chord shapes. Here is one:

http://chordfind.com/

And here is another:

http://www.all-guitar-chords.com/

(certainly a positive name for the site)

Alternatively:

http://www.chordbook.com/guitarchords.php

This last one even lets you retune the guitar so you can try chords out in other tunings too.

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

Gilbarry3, if you wanted to try something slightly different but still in standard tuning I could send you some chord shapes & progressions that Jack Evans of Easy Club shared in a magazine article a few years ago. It’s in the Scottish Swing style combining the swing chords of the old jazz players with open droney chords. Great if used in the right situation.

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

gilbarry3, Riddell (not Riddle) Fiddles is an organisation based in the Scottish Borders. It’s organiser, Sheila Sapkota, used to live on Riddell estate near Selkirk, hence the name.

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

donaidh, were the Jack Evans progressions not in an Acoustic Guitar issue some years back? If so you could probably find the article/lesson on their website.

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

Now that is a nice little web app Joe! Perfect for finding your own chords! Cheers.

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

DonaldK - yes the lesson was in the October 2002 issue. I couldn’t find it on their website so I ended up ordering a back issue. It’s a great lesson - I still haven’t mastered it though! Frank Kilkelly uses similar chord progressions in one of the sections in his excellent book "Accompanying Irish Music on Guitar".

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

Yes, donaidh, you’re right, it’s not on the website but I have just found it in the October 2002 issue (after 20 minutes search) - I should have waited for your post!
I use these shapes quite a lot, though generally not "off the cuff", as it were but when I’ve worked out an acompaniment in advance. Don’t think much of the version of The Banshee - chords are fine, tune is pants, especially B note at start of bar 2 and first bar of B part.

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

Gilbarry3, if you wanted to try something slightly different but still in standard tuning I could send you some chord shapes & progressions that Jack Evans of Easy Club shared in a magazine article a few years ago. It’s in the Scottish Swing style combining the swing chords of the old jazz players with open droney chords.

yes please Donaidh

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

This is a little sidebar ~ found this article & thought you might want to read through. "The Easy Club - The Sultans of Jings"* by Jack Evans
http://www.folkmusic.net/htmfiles/inart595.htm

Posted by .

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

.".precisely WHICH irish tune in E major were you thinking of ?
I didn’t realise there was one, ever, at all."

surely no tune of any kind is "in" a specific key. ok, if it is "in" Em it’s in a minor key, but it will be exactly the same in Am.

Re: alternative guitar chords in standard tuning for trad backing

Now I’m rehearsing "Pigeon on the Gate", backing a fiddler, in Standard. I’m using veeery simple chords strummed lightly:

Dm: xx0765
C/D: xx0553
Am/D: xx0210
Gm: xx0033 (actually G5)

…and Capo 2 (why? I like these shapes)