I got a nice email from Curtis the other day regarding open chords…


I LOVE your suggestion of learning to play the series of open chords and changes with the last three fingers, and NOT the Index finger. 

I can clearly see this strengthening the “weak” fingers rapidly, plus the potential of a variety of improvisational fingerings that wouldn’t “normally” be available.

Added the concept of playing all two-finger open chords (Em, A7, E7, Am7, etc.) with my ring & pinkie only, for added strengthening of those weakest fingers.

This will be part of my practice regimen going forward.


And SO simple a concept!”





That was a good email and ace to hear that Curtis could see the potential of this right away.

For helping finger dexterity, this exercise is great.

For helping improve barre chords, it is even better.

If you are a beginner, you can try it and use it as a regular test to see how you are progressing.


Believe me, once you can play something like a C Major chord with just your middle, ring, and pinkie, you know you are well on your way.

For many, just playing an A minor chord with these three fingers so the index is NOT involved at all is…

A great first step.


If you are a beginner though, try it with the two-finger chords such as Em, A7, E7, Am7 just as Curtis mentioned. (Remember there are multiple ways to play chords, so you will need the two-finger versions of these).

This is a great nugget to help improve your all-around playing, and especially your barre chords, but…

It just scratches the surface of the tips inside my course on the subject.


Take a look below if you want more…


The Ultimate Guide to Barre Chords


Have a great day!


Dan Thorpe

Guitar Domination


P.S. This post was originally taken from Dan Thorpe’s private email list. To get blog posts like this sent to you which are full of great tips to make fingerpicking, strumming, and learning guitar more enjoyable (especially if you are over 40) join Dan’s list. It’s 100% free, HERE.

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