Mixing open cords, 6th sting and 5th string cords

Question: As I can now freely play cords up and down the neck, from open cords, to 6th string root and 5th string roots. As you play certain cords sequences, do you always need to stay in the ‘box’ - so like CFG - 6th string, 5th, 5th - or all 6th string (up down) at times depending on the a certain cord sequence, I find that I might jump even to an open cord but then go back up the next to a 6th string or 5th sting rooted cord, mostly cause sometimes it lays out easy, and sometimes it sounds better.
Thoughts? - is there a rule to stay in the box or?? -

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There are no hard rules, do whatever works for you and serves the music best. Sometimes it’s easier to stay in one position, sometimes you might prefer the sound of a chord in a different place on the neck. It’s great to have options - some shapes lend themselves to certain embellishments more easily too.
All things being equal I will stay around the same position by default, but I’m happy to jump around if I have a reason to.


awesome thanks for your response. Yea that’s pretty much what I do, but sometimes I question if moving back to open cords in a situation is correct when it lends itself to be easier cause of the sequence, but as you state staying in a position is easier especially for embellishments. Thanks

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I mix and match cowboy chords and barre chords as I think I need to also.
Sometimes because it sounds better, sometimes because it’s easier to do.

I did a rough version of you never give me your money which starts out with cowboy chords, after the second break you can see me start to mix in barre chords, then go to all barre chords.
The second break to where it goes into rock and roll was a game changer for how I played that song as I started playing the chords as barres instead of opens. Much different tone, sounds more like the song to me.

I agree with Paul, I don’t think there’s any rules.

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Absolutely freeform mate. For me, as I assume it is for most, its about the voicing/ sound , combined with an element of accessibility where applicable.

Cheers, Shane

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As Justin says, “If it sounds good, it is good”

BTW, *Chords

That’s the great thing about having the ability to switch them up!! You can decide which chords should go where. Tired from playing in barre chord format for two verses and a chorus?? Maybe switch to open chords to give yourself a rest and change the sound slightly. . .listeners can get bored or the music can sound “samey” (to use a Justin term) if you play them in the same way throughout a whole song. It’s great to mix them up when it’s practical and makes sense.