Guitar Lesson: Using Two Capos at the Same Time to get the Sound of an Open Tuning

Playing with a capo may be fun, you can easily transpose your songs while still using the same open chord shapes as you played before.

What about using two capos at the same time? The advantages of this are:

        ~ Creating Slash Chords with any Bassnote you need

        ~ No need to retune guitar to get open chordshapes

        ~ You  are able to play chordshapes which are not possible in standard tuning without use of any capo

         ~ Almost any Capo can be used.

In short, the idea of using two capos is as follows:

First capo is used in lower postion over all 6 strings. This capo mainly frets the low E String. This will become the note where we pitch our chord against which is fretted by the second capo.

Second capo is used to hold down only four strings. Watch out, not all capos will do this, the Kysler type (the big clamp ones) seem to be ideal for this. Another thing to watch out for is not to scratch your neck too much. You can use a cloth on the part where the metal is touching the back of your guitar neck.—The Capo is no longer touching the whole of the guitar neck since we only get the capo to hold down four strings!!—- All Capos are different, you need to experiment to see what works, it also depend on neck of guitar. The shape of all guitarnecks is different, but most guitarnecks will let you capo only four strings. It may be easier to use the scond capo further up the fretboard, in lower postitions capo may come off the fretobard if it only holds down four strings. Again, find out for yourself what works to get a feel for things.

Here is one example to get you going:

Capo first capo on first Fret, this capo holds down all six strings, next capo is at fifth fret, and covers only the first four strings. The second capo creates an A-shape C barre chord with the added 6th on the high E string. First Capo hold down a F note on the Low E and a Bb on the A string.
You can ignore the Bb on the A string. The A string can still be used for fretting notes. You can still play a C at the 3nd fret  The C can be used to give the Rootnote of the chord. The low E string creates the fourth of the chord. In a way you are playing:  C/F

Experiment what kind of melodic ideas you can play now while the two capos hold down the notes as mentioned before.

Ones you start to see what the two capos can do you will love it.
Remember this is not a short cut to get better sounding chords, it is just a different method to get some ideas going for another way of playing the guitar. In a way using the two capos is limiting as a lot of your fretboard is taken up by the use of the two capos. Do not use this idea if you want to play through a lot of different keys. It may be better to treat this idea as another way to play with open tunings with the advantage of not having to retune your strings to another pitch.

Enjoy and hope to catch you soon again,