MUS 116

Acoustic Roots Guitar II: Blues to Swing to Rockabilly

This course provides a practical, hands-on approach to learning how to play a variety of American guitar styles (using the acoustic steel-string guitar), including Delta and Piedmont 12-bar blues, "comping" behind standard swing-era songs, and finishing up with a bit of rockabilly. The techniques include 2- and 3- finger fingerpicking, Freddie Green-style 4-to-the-bar-backup, simple chord soloing, and Carl Perkins/Scotty Moore/James Burton styles. The course covers how to read and play along with a basic chord chart, as well as basic chord theory. Tunes are taught in the traditional manner: listening and repeating tune segments over and over (and over) the song can be played by memory. The course also focuses on ear training- hearing the changes in the song without using written charts or scores, in addition to covering basic guitar maintenance techniques such as proper tuning, restringing, and setup. Finally, some of the wide variety of steel-string guitar body styles and construction methods are demonstrated.