Lesson #035, Barre Chords on the Banjo

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Lesson #035, Barre Chords on the Banjo

Hi Everyone,

Now that you know all of the notes on the banjo, or at least know how to name the notes on the banjo, we can start forming chords. We are going to start with the Major chords in three different positions or formations. Lets start with the barre or bar formation. I want to associate the bar formation with the third string. So if you can name all of the notes on the third string..... you can name all of the Major chords with the bar formation! Start by strumming the the first four strings open.... thats a G chord because the banjo is tuned to G. Now start up the staircase with the bar formation.

The chord at the first fret is a G# or an Ab Major chord. Fretted at the second fret you have an A Major chord..... at the third fret a Bb or an A# Major chord and so on up the neck! Now you can name all of the Major chords using the bar formation!

Rock On,


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In 2009, at the age of 60, I decided to learn to play the 5-string banjo. I searched the internet for lessons and struck gold when I found David Cavage's free banjo lessons at Musicmoose.org. His video hosting site revver.com was having some serious problems at the time so I downloaded as many of the lessons as I could whenever they became available. Revver.com stopped operating shortly afterwards and, sadly, Musicmoose.org is no more. I contacted David early 2020 and he told me he no longer had the original master videos and feared they may have been lost forever. This amazing course of free banjo lessons, from absolute beginner to advanced player, is too good to be forgotten, so this is my attempt to get David's work back out there again so that he can teach, inspire and spread the joy of banjo pickin' to more generations of budding musicians, just like he did with me. I've rounded up all the Moose stuff I could find and put it here, so start pickin' and enjoy!-------MooseHerder.