Pivot Fingers (Guitar Lesson)


What are you waiting for? Get your membership now!
Brendan Burns

Pivot Fingers

Brendan Burns explains how pivot fingers can be used to achieve smoother, quicker chord changes.

Taught by Brendan Burns in Tips & Tricks with Brendan Burns seriesLength: 9:04Difficulty: 1.0 of 5


Video Subtitles / Captions





Supplemental Learning Material

Select

Member Comments about this Lesson

Discussions with our instructors are just one of the many benefits of becoming a member of JamPlay.


danonwheelsdanonwheels replied on August 29th, 2015

Good lesson man keep it up

ChordAddictChordAddict replied on February 3rd, 2015

Im pretty late to the party. I must admit I found myself wondering about exceptions to the 'rule, for example Amaj to Gmaj. Doesn't take a genius to realize the c# note moves horizontally to help build the G. I can't wait to teach this to my students.

joseejosee replied on December 17th, 2011

I was using this techniqe unconsciously, I am happy to learn this has a name and I will use it more consciouly in the future. I really like the comment of marclange because I have the same problem and thanks for the answer. Great lesson.

shewitt10shewitt10 replied on October 14th, 2011

this lesson was good but i stared at your guitar the whle time. Did you notice its missing the headstock?

Brendan.BurnsBrendan.Burns replied on October 14th, 2011

Yes, no headstock and no fret markers. What about the strategies? Have they helped your playing?

dahndahn replied on August 21st, 2010

For all of you who run through this series with the C, Am and Fmaj7 chords, you now know the verse of "Don't Panic" by Coldplay :) There's probably lot more songs using these chords but I only recall this one.

Brendan.BurnsBrendan.Burns replied on August 21st, 2010

The chorus of "One" by U2 also uses that chord progression.

marclangemarclange replied on August 13th, 2010

Its mainly my last 2 fingers, they seem to have some sort of a delay. Its mostly bar chords. But the pivot idea seems to help. if you can make another video on more complex shapes or more ideas to improve coordination. It'd be awesome. love your lessons by the way.

Brendan.BurnsBrendan.Burns replied on August 13th, 2010

Keep in mind those last two fingers don't work like the rest. I can't remember if it's tendons or muscles, but essentially the ring and pinky are connected together much more than the other fingers. Because of their dependence on each other, they are little sluggish moving around from grip to grip. Make sure to take a little extra time with them, and they'll catch on. Try the "Battleplan" technique for the some of the bigger chords. It can help for the last two to really see where they are going.

marclangemarclange replied on August 12th, 2010

Hey I enjoyed this lesson, any chance can you cover some harder chord voicings for styles lke jazz and fusion? Great job.

Brendan.BurnsBrendan.Burns replied on August 12th, 2010

I'm using basic chord voicings for these lessons, but the principles apply for any grips. Let me know if you run into any specific problems.

Tips & Tricks with Brendan Burns

Found in our Beginner Lesson Sets

Brendan Burns covers tips for rapid chord changing and economy of motion.



Lesson 1

Pivot Fingers

Brendan Burns explains how pivot fingers can be used to achieve smoother, quicker chord changes.

Length: 9:04 Difficulty: 1.0 Members Only
Lesson 2

Battle Plan

Brendan Burns discusses a "battle plan" for performing chord changes. The battle plan prepares you for the next chord in the progression through visualization as well as physical preparation.

Length: 8:16 Difficulty: 1.0 Members Only
Lesson 3

The Strum Switch

Brendan explains how rhythmic consistency with the right hand must be maintained in order to perform effective chord changes.

Length: 9:27 Difficulty: 1.0 Members Only
Lesson 4

Staggered Strumming

Brendan Burns explains how "staggering" your strums can assist in performing chord changes.

Length: 8:08 Difficulty: 0.5 Members Only
Lesson 5

Connected Chord Voicings

Brendan discusses and demonstrates how to connect chord voicings together.

Length: 14:00 Difficulty: 1.5 FREE
Lesson 6

Connecting Chords: Dominant 7ths

Brendan Burns demonstrates and discusses ways to connect dominant 7th chord voicings.

Length: 10:35 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
Lesson 7

Connecting Chords: Minor 7ths

Brendan Burns demonstrates connecting chords for both the 6th string and 5th string minor 7th voicings.

Length: 13:15 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
Lesson 8

Connecting Chords: Major 7ths

Brendan Burns discusses the major 7th chord voicings and ways to connect them.

Length: 13:15 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
Lesson 9

Connecting Chords: Minor 7th Flat 5

The last chord voicing in the connecting chords series is the minor 7th flat 5. Brendan demonstrates uses and voicings for this chord.

Length: 7:52 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
Lesson 10

Kline Electric Guitar

Brendan answers some frequently asked questions about his Kline guitar.

Length: 6:31 Difficulty: 0.5 Members Only
Lesson 11

Practice Strategies

Brendan Burns discusses ways to get the most out of every practice minute you spend with the guitar.

Length: 22:28 Difficulty: 1.0 Members Only
Lesson 12

Prepared Guitar Techniques #1

Get ready for the wild and weird! In this two part series, Brendan shows us how to achieve some very unique, organic sounds by physically attaching various items to your guitar.

Length: 25:27 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 13

Prepared Guitar Techniques #2

Brendan wraps up this short series by showing us some practical applications for the prepared guitar.

Length: 17:24 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 14

Harmonics Part 1

In part one of this mini-series, Brendan shows you everything you need to know about producing solid left hand harmonics.

Length: 23:39 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 15

Harmonics Part 2

Brendan shows us how to play the simple tune of "Amazing Grace" using only harmonics. In addition, we'll learn how to develop other melodic ideas that enhance the original melody.

Length: 9:43 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 16

Harmonics Part 3

Brendan continues in his harmonics series by showing us how to bend harmonic notes behind the nut, culminating in the harmonic exploration of two traditional folk tunes: "Danny Boy" and "Shenandoah".

Length: 35:39 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 17

Harmonics Part 4

Brendan wraps up his harmonics series by showing two really awesome techniques: tap harmonics and pluck harmonics. These two techniques will make the entire chromatic scale available to you via harmonics!

Length: 14:24 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 18

Practice Strategies, Vol. 2

Brendan expands on a topic he shared with us a while back: practice strategies. Learn how to get the most out of your practice time with 8 very helpful and practical tips from a seasoned veteran!

Length: 26:57 Difficulty: 0.0 Members Only

About Brendan Burns View Full Biography Brendan has been passionate about music since childhood. He began his studies on trumpet, in elementary school, and then moved to guitar as a teenager. He holds a Bachelor's Degree from Berklee College of Music, and has studied with Norm Zocher, Joe Stump, Bret Willmott, Bob Pilkington, Jay Weik, Tim Miller, & Charlie Banacos.

While at Berklee, Brendan was a member of the Music Mentoring Program, teaching private lessons to gifted high school students. He is currently teaches, and is chair of the guitar department at Brookline Music School. Brendan also teaches guitar for Tune Foolery & privately at his home in Cambridge, MA.

Along with educating, Brendan plays out often as a Solo Guitarist, performing standards, pop, and classical repertoire. He has recorded and played with the chamber-fusion band Ra Quintent, and as well as Vessela Stoyanova's Eastern Stories Under Western Skies Project. Brendan also performs as a leader, director and sideman for various Boston art-rock projects, and is former member of MIT's Gamelan Galak Tika.

Acoustic Guitar Lessons

Our acoustic guitar lessons are taught by qualified instructors with various backgrounds with the instrument.


Freebo Freebo

In this lesson, Freebo covers the basics of right hand technique. This lesson is essential for all up and coming bassists.

Free LessonSeries Details
Jim Deeming Jim Deeming

Jim discusses the importance of setting goals. He provides some tips that will help steer your practicing in the right direction.

Free LessonSeries Details
Calum Graham Calum Graham

Award winning, Canadian fingerstyle guitarist Calum Graham introduces his Jamplay Artist Series, which aims to transform...

Free LessonSeries Details
Eve Goldberg Eve Goldberg

Eve talks about the boom-chuck strum pattern. This strum pattern will completely change the sound of your playing.

Free LessonSeries Details
Marcelo Berestovoy Marcelo Berestovoy

Marcelo teaches the eight basic right hand moves for the Rumba Flamenca strum pattern. He then shows you how to apply it...

Free LessonSeries Details
Orville Johnson Orville Johnson

Orville Johnson introduces turnarounds and provides great ideas and techniques.

Free LessonSeries Details
Phil Keaggy Phil Keaggy

Welcome to the Phil Keaggy Master Course! In this series introduction, Phil shows and tells us what we can expect from this...

Free LessonSeries Details
Pamela Goldsmith Pamela Goldsmith

Pamela brings a cap to her first 13 JamPlay lessons with another original etude inspired by the great Leo Brouwer. This is...

Free LessonSeries Details
Danny Voris Danny Voris

Lesson 7 is all about arpeggios. Danny provides discussion and exercises designed to build your right hand skills.

Free LessonSeries Details
Don Ross Don Ross

New fingerstyle instructor Don Ross introduces himself, his background, and what you should expect in this series.

Free LessonSeries Details

Electric Guitar Lesson Samples

Our electric guitar lessons are taught by instructors with an incredible amount of teaching experience.


Joe Burcaw Joe Burcaw

Join Joe as he shows one of his favorite drills for strengthening his facility around the fretboard: The Spider Technique.

Free LessonSeries Details
Brent-Anthony Johnson Brent-Anthony Johnson

Just like with the plucking hand, Brent-Anthony shows us the basics of proper fretting hand technique. In addition, he shows...

Free LessonSeries Details
Steve McKinley Steve McKinley

Steve McKinley talks about evaluating your bass and keeping it in top shape. He covers neck relief, adjusting the truss rod,...

Free LessonSeries Details
James Malone James Malone

James explains how to tap arpeggios for extended musical reach.

Free LessonSeries Details
Nick Greathouse Nick Greathouse

Nick starts his series with Alternate Picking part 1. Improve your timing, speed, and execution with this important lesson.

Free LessonSeries Details
Matt Brown Matt Brown

Matt Brown shows off some ways to add some creativity and originality to your rock chord voicings.

Free LessonSeries Details
Eric Madis Eric Madis

In this lesson Eric talks about playing basic lead in the Memphis Blues style.

Free LessonSeries Details
Bumblefoot Bumblefoot

Guns N' Roses guitarist Ron "Bumblefoot" Thal pulls out all the stops in his blistering artist series. Dive into the intense,...

Free LessonSeries Details
David Davidson David Davidson

JamPlay interviews Revocation's Dave Davidson.

Free LessonSeries Details
Guthrie Trapp Guthrie Trapp

JamPlay introduces Nashville session player Guthrie Trapp! In this first segment, Guthrie talks a little about his influences,...

Free LessonSeries Details




Join over 483528 guitarists who have learned how to play in weeks... not years!

Signup today to enjoy access to our entire database of video lessons, along with our exclusive set of learning tools and features.



Unlimited Lesson Viewing

A JamPlay membership gives you access to every lesson, from every teacher on our staff. Additionally, there is no restriction on how many times you watch a lesson. Watch as many times as you need.

Live Lessons

Exclusive only to JamPlay, we currently broadcast 8-10 hours of steaming lesson services directly to you! Enjoy the benefits of in-person instructors and the conveniences of our community.

Interactive Community

Create your own profile, manage your friends list, and contact users with your own JamPlay Mailbox. JamPlay also features live chat with teachers and members, and an active Forum.

Chord Library

Each chord in our library contains a full chart, related tablature, and a photograph of how the chord is played. A comprehensive learning resource for any guitarist.

Scale Library

Our software allows you to document your progress for any lesson, including notes and percent of the lesson completed. This gives you the ability to document what you need to work on, and where you left off.

Custom Chord Sheets

At JamPlay, not only can you reference our Chord Library, but you can also select any variety of chords you need to work on, and generate your own printable chord sheet.

Backing Tracks

Jam-along backing tracks give the guitarist a platform for improvising and soloing. Our backing tracks provide a wide variety of tracks from different genres of music, and serves as a great learning tool.

Interactive Games

We have teachers covering beginner lessons, rock, classic rock, jazz, bluegrass, fingerstyle, slack key and more. Learn how to play the guitar from experienced players, in a casual environment.

Beginners Welcome.. and Up

Unlike a lot of guitar websites and DVDs, we start our Beginner Lessons at the VERY start of the learning process, as if you just picked up a guitar for the first time.Our teaching is structured for all players.

Take a minute to compare JamPlay to other traditional and new methods of learning guitar. Our estimates for "In-Person" lessons below are based on a weekly face-to-face lesson for $40 per hour.

Price Per Lesson < $0.01 $4 - $5 $30 - $50 Free
Money Back Guarantee Sometimes n/a
Number of Instructors 87 1 – 3 1 Zillions
Interaction with Instructors Daily Webcam Sessions Weekly
Professional Instructors Luck of the Draw Luck of the Draw
New Lessons Daily Weekly Minutely
Structured Lessons
Learn Any Style Sorta
Track Progress
HD Video - Sometimes
Multiple Camera Angles Sometimes - Sometimes
Accurate Tabs Maybe Maybe
Scale/Chord Libraries
Custom JamTracks
Interactive Games
Community
Learn in Sweatpants Socially Unacceptable
Gasoline Needed $0.00 $0.00 ~$4 / gallon! $0.00

Mike H.

"I feel like a 12 year old kid with a new guitar!"
 

I am 66 years young and I still got it! I would have never known this if it had not been for Jamplay! I feel like a 12 year old kid with a new guitar! Ha! I cannot express enough how great you're website is! It is for beginners and advanced pickers! I am an advanced picker and thought I had lost it but thanks to you all, I found it again! Even though I only play by ear, I have been a member a whopping whole two weeks now and have already got Brent's country shuffle and country blues down and of course with embellishments. Thank you all for your wonderful program!


Greg J.

"With Jamplay I can fit in a random session when I have time and I can go at my own pace"
 

I'm a fifty eight year old newbie who owns a guitar which has been sitting untouched in a corner for about seven years now. Last weekend I got inspired to pick it up and finally learn how to play after watching an amazing Spanish guitarist on TV. So, here I am. I'm starting at the beginning with Steve Eulberg and I couldn't be happier (except for the sore fingers :) Some day I'm going to play like Steve! I'm self employed with a hectic schedule. With Jamplay I can fit in a random session when I have time and I can go at my own pace, rewinding and replaying the videos until I get it. This is a very enjoyable diversion from my work yet I still feel like I'm accomplishing something worthwhile. Thanks a lot, Greg


Bill

"I believe this is the absolute best site for guitar students."
 

I am commenting here to tell you and everyone at JamPlay that I believe this is the absolute best site for guitar students. I truly enjoy learning to play the guitar on JamPlay.com. Yes, I said the words, ""enjoy learning."" It is by far the best deal for the money.



Join thousands of others that LIKE JamPlay!