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Get Dave Isaacs' 28-Day Barre Chord Practice Plan Ebook For Just $7
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Dave Isaacs
Hey, Dave Isaacs here...

I want you to be able to play barre chords and have a much wider chord vocabulary and be able to play tons of songs.

That's why I'm offering you the chance to get the whole practice plan in Ebook format for just $7.

When the course is launched, the ebook will be $29.95 but today you can have it for just $7 bucks!

Read on to see how this will fix your barre chord problems in 28 days or less!
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Get the 28 day practice plan Ebook.

You're getting the exact same exercises and plan as the video course but without the practice videos.
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Week 1:
1. You'll build basic finger independence needed using the Chromatic and C Major scales. This might seem basic for you but it's crucial.

2. You'll build smaller 3 and 4 note chords as you continue to work on independence.

3. You'll build the full F Major barre chord and practice using the backing track.

Day 1: Activating 4 fingers

This is a simple chromatic scale exercise in the open position, working all four fingers as you move across this strings. You may have done something like this before, but here’s the difference: this time, you should be thinking about HOW you get your fingers to the strings, not just where you’re supposed to land.

The real purpose of this exercise is to get you to focus on each finger individually, and to see how the hand and arm fit into the picture in the process.

Because there is always a musical component to these exercises, we follow the SCALE rather than just the finger pattern. That’s why we only use three fingers on the 3rd string instead of all four: the fingering for a chromatic scale is different on that one string.

Take your time, keep the hand and wrist relaxed, and most of all make sure each movement is targeted and deliberate.

Day 2: C major scale exercise

Building on the concepts introduced on day 1, this exercise works the fingers in different combinations. Think of it as cross-training for your hands.

Even if you’re already familiar with this scale fingering, you might not have every practiced this slowly or with this much attention to the hand, wrist, and arm. This is an application of the dynamic hand position concept introduced on day 1: put simply, that the fingers don’t do the work alone, but with the assistance of the larger muscles of the arm to bring the fingers into place.

It’s not about stretching, yet: it’s about confident, deliberate control. And I’ll just go ahead and say it: if you find this one boring, there’s a good chance you’re not really paying attention. The goal is to really get to know your fretting hand, how one finger feels relative to another, and how the wrist and forearm assist each movement.

If the pattern introduced in the second half of the exercise is too challenging, stick with the scale itself first…you can go back and add the pattern later.

Day 3: Building C, F, and G

Odds are, you know these chords already. In this video we take a closer look at the mechanics of the 4-string simple F chord, including the position of the wrist, hand, and barre finger.

Note the use of the flexed tip segment of the index finger to fret two strings, something we’re going to dig more deeply into soon. Be aware that since not everyone’s hands are proportioned exactly the same, the specifics of how far your wrist and thumb should drop will vary.

Also keep in mind that the dropped wrist should drop the thumb along with it, bringing the other fingers further out in front of the neck. This gives you the ability to extend – but dropping too far sacrifices strength.

As with the previous two days, this exercise is as much exploration as it is instruction. Pay attention to the details and you might be amazed how much you notice.

Day 4: Knuckle flexing in Bb

Flexibility of the tip joint is essential to playing many barre chords. This exercise works you through a series of melodic patterns in the key of Bb that require flexing the tip segment of the index and ring fingers to cross strings.

Again, be conscious of your hand position and the role of the wrist and arm. Pay close attention to the fingerings and follow them exactly! As always, if the tempo in the video is too fast, watch the video to learn the fingerings and then practice on your own with the tab at a slower tempo.

If it’s easy, try picking up the pace, but make sure every note rings out clearly.

Day 5: Power chord shapes

There’s a very good chance that these forms are familiar too. Two- and three-note power chord shapes are very relevant to playing barre chords, because many barre forms incorporate them.

This exercise builds on the small stretches that were introduced on day 4, and also develops coordination and control of the fretting hand pinky. Don’t try to hold everything down all at once: remember that since the goal is finger independence, build the chords one finger at a time and notice how the position of your wrist and arm affect your ability to make the notes ring.

If you’ve mastered this part and would like to make the exercise a little more challenging, practice landing on the complete form all at once – but make sure the fingers move absolutely together. As always, control is more important than speed, and accuracy and clarity of sound are more important than your ability to stretch. One leads to the other, but not the other way around.

Day 6: Building the full F chord

This might be new territory for some of you, if you’ve been working with the smaller 4-note F chord form up to this point. Some people are surprised to find that the 6-note form is easier, because now we’re really starting to use leverage to our advantage.

This lesson addresses one of the biggest misunderstandings about barre chords: that the main point is the amount of force you can apply with the barre finger. That’s actually backwards: with proper hand position, more force is naturally applied to the REST of your fingers, anchoring the hand.

The full barre is played with the side of the index finger, creating a vise grip that applies much more pressure with much less effort. The position of your hand and arm become essential here, and hopefully this exercise will shed some more light on what we’ve done up to this point.

Day 7: C, F, and G chords with a backing track

Today you’re going to apply everything we’ve done up to this point to play C, full F, and G chords in time with a backing track. If you don’t know how to read the rhythms, watch the video and listen to when the chords are played as the track progresses.

You might choose to stick with the simplest rhythm of playing the chord once per measure to start with until you get more comfortable. There are two versions of the track, slower and faster, so you have choices here: keeping it very simple, following the progression as presented in the video, or starting with the more involved rhythms.

Whatever you choose, never go faster than you can control until you can make the chord transitions smoothly.
Week 2:
1. Take your finger independence to new levels with slightly more challenging exercises.

2. You'll continue to work on partial barres as you slowly build coordination and stamina.

3. You'll tackle the full B Minor barre chord and learn the importance of curling your index finger as you practice to a new fun track.

Day 8: G major scale exercise

Another finger independence and control exercise, applying the hand position and movement concepts we’ve been using. Remember, the value and power of these exercises comes from slow, deliberate movement…you’re also developing a stronger sense of the way using different fingers changes the balance of the hand.

It’s all about paying attention, and keep in mind that most people play exercises like this blindly and much too fast. Concentrate on the right things and there’s enough to think about to keep your head in the game.

Day 9: Building new chord shapes

This one is likely to be a challenge for some of you, so remember that you can work through it on your own if you can’t keep up with the tempo in the video.

The exercise starts with building the chords one finger at a time, NOT worrying about holding down every note to start with but staying focused on hand position. The second half has the notes played together as chords, but if this part is too much you can skip it for now.

As always, slow and deliberate is the key! You may also want to take note of the chord formations, we’re going to see these again.

Day 10: Pinky Stretch Blues

Another exercise in finger independence but a big step closer to the big barre chords. This one uses power chord shapes to outline chords.

As I mentioned in our previous power chord exercise, these forms are part of the larger shapes and are great for gently developing your reach. Start off releasing each finger as you move from note to note, and then try holding down more of the chord if you’d like to increase the challenge.

This one sounds really cool if you can build it up to a faster tempo, but that’s not the immediate goal. Remember that a slight rotation of the hand is really helpful to bring the pinky to the string, especially in the spots where you’ve reaching for the 6th fret with that little finger.

Your wrist is not mean to be rigid, it’s meant to move as the fingers lead…so use anatomy to your advantage!

Day 11: Partial barre chords

In this exercise you’ll be working primarily on the three treble strings, using forms that will become familiar if they aren’t already.

We’re now looking to treat these shapes as ringing chords, so the notes should be held and played together. The index finger will hold down two and sometimes three strings, depending on the chord and the proportions of your fingers.

Remember the tip segment flex…that’s really the secret of these small barre chords, because it holds the strings down more evenly. Some of you will find it more comfortable to barre three strings even when you only need two; it depends on where the knuckle falls.

Make sure the strings doesn’t land in the crease under the knuckle, or you’ll need to push much harder to make the string sound. Again, take your time and practice on your own with a metronome at a slower tempo if you can’t keep up with the vid, but do watch closely for the nuances of the hand position.

Day 12: The full B minor chord

Here we are at the next of the essential big barre chords! This form builds on the 4-note shape you practiced on day 9, but adds a low bass note. Two big points to think about: one, notice that the barre really only covers two strings, 1 and 5.

So it’s important that you don’t try to flatten the index finger to cover every string. When you watch the video, notice how the side of the finger does most of the work, while a slight curl to the index finger adds leverage on the treble side. Point two: when you transition to another chord, be sure to visualize the new shape before you move.

Identify your target notes and which fingers are going to play them. Then release the first chord and deliberately direct the fingers to the new shape. Your wrist will likely be part of this equation too…as before, don’t try to make the fingers do all the work on their own.

Day 13: The B major chord

This one is another essential shape, and a big challenge for most people in the beginning. You should recognize the now-familiar building process, adding fingers one at a time at first but keeping them on the strings as you go.

When it’s time to change chords, release and aim just as you did yesterday. That term “release” is an important point – you’re not lifting the fingers, you’re just letting go of the strings. If this one is a big challenge, try focusing on the single-note parts first and don’t try to play the full chords right away.

This one and the last one are exercises you may choose to return to, so it’s ok to simplify, move ahead, and then add these to your routine as you progress. It’s all part of a building process and will work a little differently for everyone.

Day 14: B Ready!

Welcome to another milestone…today we’re putting some pieces together with a backing track! Looking at the onscreen tab or the pdfs, you’ll notice how we start with the power chord shapes played as individual notes, and build gradually into the full chords.

Again, you can gauge your progress and adjust the difficulty as needed: either practice slowly without the track until the chords are ringing, or leave off the more challenging parts at first.

We’re now halfway through, so it’s a good time to take a good look at where you are with this course as a whole. Some of you will be ready to move forward, while some of you might feel like you need more time with the material we’ve introduced so far.

If you’re struggling, go back to the beginning and work your way through these two weeks again. You might be surprised how much easier the earlier exercises are now!

You can also feel free to move through them more quickly or jump to a specific day if there’s a particular exercise or chord form that needs more work. 28 days is a guideline, not an absolute, so take the time you need.

When you work through this sequence the right way, it really does work, so stay focused and don’t be discouraged!
Week 3:
1. You'll get a little break as you focus on a new scale for finger independence.

2. You'll learn new 4-note chords as you start to work on speeding up your chord transitions.

3. You'll start to see the end in sight as you play along with a fun new backing track and work those chord transitions.

Day 15: Finger workout – E minor scale

After all that intense chord work of the last couple of days, it’s time to take a step back and return to some simpler finger exercises. This one is in the key of E minor, and you may find it a little easier than some of the previous ones.

The main point is a little different, though: this is an exercise in applying the balance concept in different places across the neck. The “balance concept” is the idea that the force holding down the strings comes from the balanced weight of your hand and arm, not the pressure from your hand muscles.

In other words, the weight of your hand and arm is balanced on each fingertip, and is passed from one finger to another. After the work you’ve done so far, you should have a solid idea of what a relaxed hand position is.

Now, your focus should be on feeling the weight of your arm translated to the neck by that relaxed hand position. Notice how the sustained three-note chord in the middle section changes that balance, since you’re holding multiple notes at once.

You might also notice the use of side-to-side vibrato in this one, which should reinforce the concept: this type of vibrato should come from your arm as well, not the fingers. You may want to learn the fingerings from the tab before you play along with the track.

Day 16: More chord shapes

Today we’re adding a different part to yesterday’s backing track. This one moves across the neck, using mostly three and four-note chords derived from the larger barre shapes you learned as B minor and B major.

In the opening section, build the forms one finger at a time…notice the movement of the index finger from the 5th to the 2nd string to play the Dsus2 and Csus2 chords. But when those chords return later in the exercise, use a barre to cover the 5th and 2nd strings at the same time.

Notice the use of the flat index finger in the middle and end sections. This is the first time you’ve actually had to lay a barre flat, and might be challenging. It’s ok, do the best you can with it but don’t be afraid to move on tomorrow if you can’t quite get it.

Drop the wrist to extend the finger enough to play the 5-note barre; flex the knuckle back to play the 3-note partial barre chords.

Day 17: Moving notes against held chords

One of the reasons barre chords are so challenging is that they require asking your fingers to hold two different positions at the same time. This is why finger independence is so important.

It might not seem obvious at first how this exercise relates, but as you work through it you’ll see what we’re doing here: working with a moving part against a stationary one. This takes real finger independence, because only certain fingers move while the others stay in place. Even though we’re using basic open chords, it may be tricky to get all the notes to ring out.

Pay close attention to what needs to move and what doesn’t: don’t lift any fingers that aren’t part of the moving line. At the same time, as always, stay aware of your thumb, wrist, and arm. This is a very musical exercise when you get it down, but applying the technique properly is essential to make it sound musical!

So be sure you’re fully aware of each movement.

Day 18: Triads and partial barres

As we’ve already seen, a barre doesn’t have to cover all the strings. Mastering partial barres is essential to a well-rounded chord vocabulary. This exercise uses mostly three-note forms, working off a three-note partial barre on the inside strings.

As before, this works best with a flexed tip segment. Bend the knuckle back slightly at the tip segment, making sure your finger is muting the high E string. As you work through this one, you might find the sounds very familiar…these chord forms are a big part of the sound of 1970’s rock, and many classic riffs use combinations of these shapes.

Be careful to release all tension or holding when you change chords, especially the bent-knuckle partial barre.

Day 19: 4-note chord forms

Building on the chord work in the previous few lessons, this one introduces a new four-note shape that might be familiar to some of you. It’s not a barre, at least not the way it’s used here, but it’s a very useful alternative to the shape you learned as B major a while back.

Here, we’re using it as a finger independence and extension exercise. Start off fingering each note individually in the first part – don’t try to stretch or sustain the notes at first, just move smoothly from finger to finger. The second section uses more block chords where the notes should be played together.

Note the use of the 7th chord barre form we’ve come across a couple of times before, and a new shape: a three-string partial barre at the second fret to form a simple F# minor. This is another exercise that could be split into two parts, so if you’re having trouble keeping up through the second part you could choose to return to it later.

Day 20: Mixed partial and full barre chords

Continuing further along the path we’ve been following this past few days, this next exercise mixes several of the barre forms you’ve learned so far. At this point, you do need to be able to sustain the chords, so this is a good time to take inventory.

See if certain chords are more challenging than others; if that’s the case, you may want to revisit the lesson that introduced those forms.

We’re at another key point here. Playing extended sequences of barre chords can be challenging even for experienced players! So the trick now is not just getting each chord to ring but getting through the entire exercise without tiring out your hand.

If you do find your hands are cramping or getting tired, practice sections of the exercise – maybe one line at a time, or four measures at a time. It’s important to understand that you WILL benefit from practicing even a small section of these exercises daily.

So even if you haven’t mastered the whole thing, choose a bite-sized piece and work on that. You might finish the entire course without perfecting everything, but you can go back and start working through it again! At this stage, the continued effort matters more than whether everything is perfect yet.

So if you’re struggling, you can choose to slow your pace down or take on smaller pieces of each exercise. Either way, maintaining the commitment is key.

Day 21: More mixed chord forms

Today’s exercise is a two-fer! The track has two distinct guitar parts and two pdf charts, one played on acoustic guitar and one on electric. You can use either type of guitar on either part, just as we’ve been for the entire course, but the parts themselves are meant to be examples of how each instrument might be used in a song like this.

Try one or both…you’ll see that we’re putting together almost everything we’ve covered over the past three weeks. Expect a challenge, it’s meant to be one. But have fun with this one, and as before you can choose to simply if you need to.

One key point you should notice. The chord forms are now falling into categories: major or minor, full barre or partial barre, and 6th string root or 5th string root. It’s important that you’re doing more than just following the tabs…from here on, you really should be learning the names and locations of the chords we’re using. There are a lot of them, but fortunately you’ve seen the same chords used in multiple exercises.

If you can’t memorize them all, don’t worry…the more you see them, the more familiar they’ll become. But you should be taking this opportunity not only to get better at barre chords but to also get to know the guitar neck better! So don’t play blindly – know what you’re playing when you play it.
Week 4:
1. You'll learn the last of the four primary barre chord shapes while continuing to build on the momentum from the previous weeks.

2. You'll learn a new "release and glide" technique as you play chords all over the neck with new backing tracks.

3. You'll finish the course and will be amazed at how much progress you've made!

Day 22: Building 6-note barre chords

In this exercise we’re going to complete our set of the four primary barre chords. We’ve looked at the idea of classifying them in categories, and today we’re going to add the one primary form we haven’t covered yet, the 6-note minor form.

Remembering the categories is essential to really be able to use barre chords. We know we can build either a major or a minor chord off a 6th or 5th string root, and that most of the other partial forms we’ve looked at come straight out of these bigger shapes.

We’ve saved the 6-note minor for last because it’s the most challenging, with four notes covered by the barre. In the exercise, we start off as we have every time a new chord has been introduced: building one finger at a time. In this case, you’ll start off with the power chord shape and then bring your index finger across the neck to play a three-note partial barre.

In the second part of the exercisewhere the notes are played together, we’re not going to cover six strings yet. We’ve seen a three-note minor parial barre in the previous exercises on the 2nd fret as an F# minor. On the 5th fret the chord becomes an A minor, and we’re filling it out with the ring and pinky to create a 5-note form.

Pay attention to the chord transitions in the middle section. We’ve covered this before, but it’s worth revisiting, especially the C-F change. Notice how the ring finger provides a common note and “pivot point” between the two chords.

Day 23: Partial barre chords

At this point, you should be clear on the process we’ve been using as each new chord is introduced. We covered the six-note minor form last lesson; today we’re using 4-note partial barre chords in conjuction with larger six-note forms.

You might find that the 4-note chords work best with a slightly different hand position, because the leverage you need is different. Some people will need to drop the wrist a little more, some a little less – it depends on the proportions of your hand.

We’ve explored this area enough that by now you should have a pretty good idea of what works for you. Remember, being aware of how your hands sit on the strings has been a major point from the beginning!

Day 24: Mixed partial and full barre chords

Today we move into a new key and a new combination of chords. This time, the chords are played one note at a time as arpeggios. You have the option of building the chord as we’ve done before, or you can try to grab the entire form at once. In the case of the F and C chords played with the 5th string root, you’ll see in the video that these are played with two fingers using the ring finger partial barre.

So these can’t be built up, because the ring finger needs to land as a barre to cover three strings. This is another potential challenge, so be aware of your hand and wrist position to make sure you’re getting the leverage you need.

Follow the tab carefully to make sure you have the picking patterns, but you could choose to play the whole exercise through in block chords if the picking makes things too complicated.

Day 25: Full barre chords

Today we complete the set of our four primary barre forms, building on what we’ve done so far. Remember that we can classify the chords by quality (major or minor) and location of the root note (5th or 6th string). In this exercise we add the complete 6-note minor barre form by adding the 6th string root to the shape.

The exercise is played using block chords, first once per measure and then gradually adding more rhythm. But in addition to the chord workout, there’s an important conceptual part of this lesson: how to know where you are and what chord you’re playing.

So we also have a brief theory lesson on whole and half-steps, and how we use this knowledge to find what fret to use to play a particular chord. This is crucial information, so make sure you understand the basic concept!

Remember that memorizing a series of shapes might help you learn one song, but really getting to know the guitar neck will help you learn any song. So don’t shy away from the theory, this is very practical information that you might use every day.

Day 26: Sliding barre chords

Today’s exercise presents a new challenge. Sliding the same barre formation along the same strings is a little more difficult than the release-and-glide technique we’ve been using.

Releasing the strings stops the sound, which under most circumstances is what we want. However, in a true slide we want to hear the notes as they move, meaning that we’ve got to maintain some pressure. The good news is that the balance concept we’ve been working with applies here too, though.

We don’t need to hear EVERY note of the sliding chord to get the effect of the slide. So we can identify the point of balance – the notes that give us the most natural leverage – and focus on those. In the case of our opening F to G slide, and with this 6-note major formation in general, that’s likely to be – you guessed it – the ring and pinky fingers.

In the case of the Bb-C slide that follows, it’ll be the extended ring finger covering the 3rd and 4th strings. If you’re using the four-finger version of this form, you’ll probably feel most balanced on middle and ring.

Notice that the index finger actually doesn’t need to barre in this exercise, because we’re not including the E or B strings in the sliding chord. So to make the exercise a little MORE challenging, try the full 6-note barre for the F to G slide. Be aware of where your force is coming from, and if you find you need more pressure try to make it come from the curled fingers instead of the thumb.

Squeezing the thumb into the fingers will compress the hand and make the slide more difficult. Also, take every opportunity to release and relax. Even a small gap is an opportunity to check in, see what you feel, and let go before moving into the next chord.

Over time, you’ll learn to do this very quickly and often…it makes a big difference in keeping the hand from cramping.

Day 27 – Sliding partial chords – strength and stamina

This one might seem really simple, and in some ways it is. We’ve explored how partial forms can give us different sounds to play with, and new ways to play familiar chords. In this case, we’re using two-note chords entirely, all played with a single finger on two strings – the now familiar bent-knuckle partial barre.

The big challenge here has two elements: keeping the pressure of the strings so we hear the slide, and releasing the pressure cleanly after the slide. As always, remember that the energy of the shift should be coming from your arm: the fingers lead and direct, but the larger arm muscle takes care of the actual movement.

When you’re holding multiple strings down at the same time this can get tricky, but apply the mental concepts you’ve learned about leverage and pressure and you can maintain that sense of balance. In fact, you can remain balanced on a moving finger, allowing the pressure to be part of the movement instead of holding you in a fixed position.

Try this exercise with the index finger exclusively, and also with a combination of flattened index and ring fingers.

Day 28 – Putting it all together

Congratulations, you made it! If you can play exercise 28 all the way through, you have successfully completed the 28 Day Barre Chord Plan. If you still find these exercises challenging, though, don’t despair.

If you’ve been practicing faithfully for the past few weeks you’ve almost definitely seen some improvement, especially if you really absorb and adopt the philosophy and approach. This course can be revisited in any number of ways: from beginning to end a second time, or focusing on particular issues that the program may have revealed.

You might choose to put together an organized warmup routine, putting several exercises together in sequence and using them as a workout. Just remember two very important things: effective practicing is both targeted and deliberate.

That means that you know exactly the issue or problem you’re trying to solve, and that you’re fully aware of what you’re doing in a very specific way. Dead-end practice is a result of a fuzzy, haphazard approach.

Be clear, be focused, be deliberate, and most importantly be consistent! As this course should have demonstrated, commitment to the routine is key. How long it really takes to master all of these things depends on many variables, but daily practice is essential – even if all you can spare is ten minutes a day.

I’m confident that if you’ve applied these ideas and practiced consistently, you’ve seen a significant change in your playing even if you haven’t mastered everything. Now you know how to tackle the next challenge, whether it’s on this topic or any other you work on going forward.

That’s huge: there’s nothing more powerful than learning how to learn.
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What Are Students Of The 28-Day Barre Chord Practice Plan Saying?
Brian Melchar
Brian is 67 and has been playing for a little over 4 years. He struggled with barre chords during this time and tried a bunch of methods but nothing seemed to help him.

He discovered lots of "nuggets of wisdom" in Dave's course and now has the confidence that he can get to where he wants to be.

Brian recommends this course to anyone that can't play barre chords.
John Nielson
John is 66 years old and has been playing guitar since he retired 3 years ago.

John struggled with placing all of his fingers in time for the barre and getting all the strings to wring out clearly. His playing was also extremely limited to just open position cowboy chords.

After Dave's course, he can now play many songs including "Crazy" by Aerosmith and "Layla" by Eric Clapton.
Amanda Jordan Writes...

"I loved the course.

It was challenging as I have never tried barre chords before. Doing the course has improved my playing so much.

It also made me excited to pick up my guitar each day to practice.

I am going to start at the beginning and re-do the course again to improve even more and get more confidence.

Thanks so much for getting me excited about my guitar again."

Cheers
Amanda
Doug Writes...

"I've been really pleased with the 28-day bar chord program. The videos are awesome, and the pace slow, but that is exactly what I was looking for.

I'm the type of person that would much rather take something slow, steady, and get it done right then to just be given a brief overview and in the end, find that I have either picked up bad habits, or have learned something only partially.

I can also learn at my own pace and not have to keep up with others, or have to worry about having another private lesson in 2 days and have not practiced the last material."

Thanks for a great course,
Doug
Here's Exactly What You're Getting Today:
1. PDF Ebook with explanations and exercises for each day of the practice plan.

2. 10 Backing Track .MP3 Files.


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