I was asked to do a video on how to master chord progression speed.
First, I want to address this idea of mastering anything on your instrument.
You will never master anything.
I'm serious. You will never master anything, because it is simply not possible.
To master something means you took that thing to its utmost peak of perfection. There is now no possible way to improve.
We can always make improvements on anything we work on. None of us are ever truly masters. So please, I invite you to have this perspective when you learn your instrument and be reasonable with yourself.
Several times I've seen advertisements saying you can master this and that on guitar with some number of tricks and what not. It's all bullshit. It's just a sales gimmick.
Personally, I would steer clear of places that offer this. Why? I do not believe they truly have your best interest at heart. They just want your money.
So, how about we rephrase the initial question.
How can you speed up chord progressions?
The answer is - Metronome!
Yes, the good ol' metronome. Take whatever progression you are trying to speed up and play it slowly to the metronome and gradually increase the speed of the metronome after each successful play through of the progression.
Let's say you are working on going between an Am and C chord. You strum each chord four times then switch.
Start your metronome at 60 bpm. Aim to hit the chord once every time your metronome clicks.
After you can successfully play the progression at least twice through with no mistakes at 60 bpm, bump it up to 65 bpm.
Keep bumping up by 5 bpm each time the progression is done correctly and you will see amazing results.
Now, let's say you are having trouble just switching between two different chords, like going from a G chord to an F chord.
Set your metronome up to 60 bpm again. This time, instead of playing each chord four times, you will only play it once.
Play your G chord on beat one, then, use the time it takes for beats 2, 3, and 4 to go by to get set up for the F chord. Then play the F chord when beat 1 starts again, and then start getting ready for the G chord.
It will look/sound something like this:
G chord (move to the F chord) F chord (move to the G chord)
Click Click Click Click Click Click Click Click
Beat 1 Beat 2 Beat 3 Beat 4 Beat 1 Beat 2 Beat 3 Beat 4
Those clicks represent the sound your metronome makes. The beats underneath show you how to keep count of each beat. The chords above are shown over the beat you play them. The (move to ____ chord) is telling you to start moving to the next chord to be ready to play it when it comes time to strum the next chord.
Basically, you are hitting a chord and not letting it ring out until the next chord needs to be played. Play the first chord, and then start moving those fingers right away so they are in position and ready to play the next chord.
Giving yourself those extra beats in between chords can help give you enough time to switch chords.
So, let's say you have gone between the G and F two times with the method just mentioned. Now, you guessed it, move up the metronome 5 bpm.
The more times you speed up the metronome the smaller the gap between the chords will become. This will gradually train your hand to jump into new chord shapes.
This will all make a lot more sense by watching the following video:
Use this search box to find a specific type of lesson. If you can't find what you're looking for send a message to firstname.lastname@example.org
John Taylor - guitar and bass instructor for Mile High Shred.