What Is A Capo For?

A capo can be placed on up to ten frets on your guitar. Even though you play the same chord fingerings, they sound different on each fret the capo is on.

Why Do I Need A Capo?

You need to pitch your guitar to the voice in order to retain vocal quality. If the singer comes back to a musical instrument they lose their quality – and then their audience.

The words of our favourite songs mean much to us. And all good guitarists play in the key that best suits the voice. This Is Mostly Done With A Capo. Especially on acoustic guitar.

How To Use A Capo

If a song suits your voice that’s great. If it doesn’t try putting a capo on the 1st fret. It has now replaced the nut on your guitar which means that what was the 2nd fret has now become the new 1st fret.

All you have to do is play the same chord sequence again and the song is in a higher key. If this position suits your voice that’s great. If not you can move it up or down as many frets as you like until it suits.

3 Types Of Capo

There are 3 main types of capo. Curved, Straight, and 12 string guitar capos. Before buying a capo check to see if the fretboard of your guitar is Sraight Or Curved. Then you will know which one you need. You should always place the capo within 1/4 inch of the steel fret.

The Best Capo For A Beginner

Definitely the Guitar X1. It’s the best value for money I’ve seen. It’s very easy to attach, keeps the strings in tune up at least 8 frets. And works for both electric and acoustic guitars. Do Not Buy a cheap capo. It will be either too loose or too tight on the guitar neck. Too loose means a muffed sound. Too tight means strings that are slightly out of tune.

what is a capo for

The Guitar X1

what is a capo for

I use a Shubb capo (pictured right). It’s expensive and more difficult to put on. But it keeps my guitar Perfectly In Tune no matter where I place it on the fretboard. That’s because of the screw adjustment at the back. As the guitar neck widens I adjust the capo so it applies the exact same amount of pressure as my fingertips.

Pauric Mather Signature Tip

If you find it difficult to get certain chords to sound good on your guitar, place a capo on the 3rd fret. Try these chords again. Now They’re Easier. And they sound better too. After a few days practice take off the capo. You should find them easier to play.

Difficult guitar rhythms are also easier to practice if you place a guitar on the 3rd fret. After a few days, they should also be easier without a capo.





About the author

Author of 3 Amazon #1 Best Sellers, Pauric Mather is from Dublin, Ireland. A professional guitarist since 1987 he has played with many successful artists. He is also a leading expert in guitar teaching and one of the very few to have achieved outstanding success as a performer, writer, and guitar teacher. His ground breaking guitar books and lessons are truly unique. And easily the most individual and personalised you will ever find. What’s even more remarkable is that you need no knowledge of music to learn from his teaching style.
1 Response
  1. Levon Tan

    Great insight on how and why you should use a capo. I have 2 capos, a straight one for my electric and a curved one for my acoustic. I don’t usually use capos because my voice is quite low to sing in tune. But on occasions, I do use it for when I jam with other musicians…..I also use it if there are a lot of barre chords in a song that I am playing or learning. I hope I am not the only one that does this hahaha

Leave a Reply