Guitar Chords: Easy Subsututes For Barre Chords?

I’m new to playing guitar and I’m really struggling with barre chords.
Are there any easy substitutes for B, Bm, F, Fm?


  1. Wayne T says:
  2. Denise says:

    Nope! I used to call them my b***h (B) and f****r (F) chords when I was learning guitar…blood, sweat and tears later…got ’em…

  3. BritWord says:

    The easy substitute is to play only some of the strings, not all six.

    If you only play the top four strings (by ‘top’, guitarists are referring to the pitch not the position so we are talking about the 4 thinnest strings) you can play simpler fingerings, without the barré. It is a cop-out and will cramp your style but it works up to a point.

    You can always avoid the actual chords you mention by transposing a tune into a different key or by using a capo and playing the chord using a different chord shape but that misses the point. You still need to learn to use those particular chord shapes, with the full barré, eventually. It will seriously limit your playing if you don’t master barrés though I have to admit that I went out of my way to avoid them for years ….. BIG mistake.

    Hang in there and stick with those barrés as much as you can. The technique is FAR more useful than those few chords you have mentioned …. but you’ll find that out as your playing and your understanding improves.

    EDIT: Afterthoughts: Barrés are much harder if your guitar does not have a good, straight neck or a tight action (strings fairly close to the neck) or if you are using too heavy a gauge of strings. Lighter strings make it much easier, especially while you are learning.