Double Capo Tricks (Play in Drop F)

Have you ever played guitar with a double capo setup? It’s actually a lot of fun, and not that hard to do.

Basically what we’re doing here is using a reasonably short capo to cover the top five strings at the second fret. This allows the low E to ring out, and means that if we play a “D” shape chord on the 4th fret, and allow that low E to ring through, we have a really nice full sounding E chord. You get that low end on the chord, plus all the top end as well – a very different voicing than you’re used to using a standard root 6 E chord.

Okay, so to make use of this, you’ll need to play chords from the key of D, so you have to transpose your song DOWN a whole step. E becomes D, C#m becomes Bm, A becomes G, B becomes A, and so on.

Alright, but what about this double capo trick I mentioned?

Well, what I just explained is how to use this with one capo, but if you move that short capo further up the fretboard, let’s say to the third fret, we can add a second capo at the first fret, covering all six strings, and we now have exactly the same setup, but now we’re in F, with a lovely low F note on the bottom of a nice D shape chord (which is our new F!). So now you’ll need to transpose everything from E down a tone and a half to get to the chord shapes you’ll use with the double capo setup.

One thing to keep in mind with this is you need to watch out for the ii minor (that’s Em in the key of D) because normally you’d play that Em root note on the sixth string (open), but now that note isn’t there for you! And on top of that, it’s pretty well impossible to actually fret it with a finger, due to that capo being in the way. So, I recommend simply skipping that root note and strum your chord starting from the fifth string instead, just for that chord.

So there you have my double capo trick – have you used something like this before? Let me know in the comments below!

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