Capo

Pronunciation: KAH-poe

What is the musical definition of a Capo?

A capo is a device typically used by musicians on a fretted instrument such as a guitar, ukelele, mandolins, banjos, and others. It is used on a musical instrument to lessen the length of the strings, and thus, raising the pitch.

Key Takeaways

  1. A capo is a device used to clamp down the fingerboard of a guitar.
  2. A capo raises the pitch of a guitar.
  3. A capo lessens the length of the musical instrument’s strings at the same time.

Understanding the Capo

The main benefit of using this device is for a guitarist to play a musical piece in different keys while also being able to use first-position, open-string chord forms.

The word capo is derived from the word, capodastro, which is an Italian word that means “head.” The capo device is considered to be one of the most used guitar accessories and typically used by musicians who play blues, flamenco, folk, and Irish guitar music.

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