Home  ›  Q&A

How do you play a chord that skips a string?

Question by Zach
(Florissant, MO)

I was looking at the tab and found some chords that are played on the A and G string but not the D string. How do I play those chords without strumming the D string too? Do I play the string as a dead note or is there another way?

Here's the link for the tab for Sadie Hawkins Dance by Relient K on songsterr.com. If you select the Matt Hoopes guitar part in the instrument selection tab then you'll see lots of chords like I'm talking about in the intro.


Matt's doing what I refer to as "doubling up" using octaves. You're right, it involves a dead note in between the fretted strings.

To block out the D string, collapse your index finger back slightly and touch the string (but don't fret it). This will mute the string.

You may also want to use the tip of your index finger to mute the string below it.

Collapse your ring or pinky finger back in a similar way to touch and mute the string above.

The high E string should also be muted by the base of your index finger (or you could use your pinky finger if it's free).

It'll take some time to be able to accurately place your fingers in this way as soon as they hit the fretboard, but it's all about muscle memory so just keep repeating the action.

You can use this octave doubling up method on the other strings as well. Here are the fingerings...

Click here to post comments

Ask Your Own Question