|Musicians often have split feelings about
using the capo. The capo is a very useful tool, but it also causes troubles. In front of
an audience, this is very disturbing. The audience comes for one reason only - to hear
good music out of well tuned instruments!· The capo obstructs your playing
When you play certain things on the frets closest to the capo, the capo will interfere with your hand. The bar of the capo is wider than the fretboard and most capos have yokes, screws or handles on the back of the instrument neck. So, naturally, you place the capo away from your hand, behind the fret. However this will cause:· Tuning problems
If the capo is placed away from the fret, it will bend
the strings. The bass strings will be bent more than the treble strings, because they are
thicker. They have a thin steel core, so they bend as easy as the treble strings. The
further away from the fret the capo is placed, the easier the strings are bent and the
harder the capo have to be tightened, in order to prevent the strings from buzzing against
the fret. All strings will be pitched too high, and the bass strings will be more out of
tune than the treble strings. The strings are actually fretted twice - by your fingers and
by the capo.
Every capo goes into a certain position of equilibrium
when you attach it. If you don't hold it in that position, it will go there anyway. The
strings are often pulled sideways and you have to make a new attempt to fasten the capo.
Sometimes the strings are not pulled aside at once - the capo might change its position
when you start to play and the strings vibrate. For most capos attached from the side, the
position of equilibrium depends upon the thickness of the instrument neck.