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How To Become A Better Dulcimer Player - 11 Backup Chords In The Key of G

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How To Become A Better Dulcimer Player - 11

Backup Chords In The Key of G


Have you ever noticed that during group play that everything starts to sound the same? That is easily remedied by one or more people playing a harmony, bass part, counter-melody or backup chords. With the exception of backup chords, it is necessary to have all the above written out so that you can play your part. The backup chords are normally on your written tab sheet and are a part of the melody. That is what we are going to address in this article.

For most people, singing in the key of G is the easiest. That said, most of the songs that we play and sing are in the key of D. That is because of our DAD tuning. Yes, you can play and sing songs in the key of G on our dulcimers tuned to DAD. You could also capo your instrument at the third fret in DAD tuning to be in the key of G or retune to GDG. The most efficient way to solve this problem follows. Some of the chords that we need in G require a 1½ fret, which most players do not have. In the key of G, our three major chords are G-C-D. No problem playing the G and D chords. What do we do about playing C chords?

There are a number of ways to finger a C chord without having a 1½ fret. All of the following chords can be flipped (bass to melody - melody to bass).

C Chords:

3-4-6, 6-6-6, 8-6-6, 13-13-13

We are talking about playing backup chords that you might see on your tab sheet. You can usually substitute one chord for another. Remember your major chords in the key of G are G-C-D. Your minor chords are Am, Bm, Em, D7. The following usually works:

Am - substitute a C

Bm - substitute a D

Em - substitute a G

D7 - substitute a D

Your ability to play backup chords will add much to each song. Even if you do not know the song, you can play the backup chords. Hopefully this article will help you to become a better dulcimer player.

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