Day 1: Saturday 13th March 2021 – A Happy Accident
Over the past few weeks, I’ve been teaching group sessions online where I have a few beginner students (with big fingers) struggling to play the A chord.
To better understand how this feels for them and come up with some solutions, I randomly decide to pick up my son’s ¾ size electric guitar (which has a smaller neck) and turn it upside down (to play left-handed) to have a go at the A chord.
In this position, I feel like a complete beginner with fingers that are too big for the guitar, which is exactly what I want.
When I attempt the A chord, it obviously sounds wrong because the guitar is an upside-down right-handed guitar. But it’s cool because I’m not trying to play music. I’m just trying to better understand how it feels to play the A chord from the perspective of the complete beginner with big fingers.
WOW! I’m absolutely astounded by how difficult the A chord feels to play. The old-school way of playing it feels squishy and my fingers struggle to fit into the small frets. The new-school way feels like I’m tying my fingers up in a knot.
Trying Other Chords
Fascinated by this initial experience, I decided to try some of the other chords.
They all feel excruciatingly difficult! The C chord feels literally impossible to play. Barre chords, another planet. It’s a really weird feeling considering playing the same chords right-handed is as easy as writing my name.
As difficult as it feels, I’m absolutely fascinated.
The Seed is planted. The Adventure begins.