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Old 06-12-2019, 02:18 AM
AllanAnd AllanAnd is offline
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Default Suggestions like "Freight Train"?

I've been playing "Freight Train" by Elizabeth Cotten in an easy arrangement by Tony Polecastro.

Can anyone suggest other tunes like this to further develop my fingerstyle playing and where to get tabs?
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Old 06-12-2019, 03:53 AM
JonPR JonPR is offline
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Good question. It's a problem I face with my students, to find a simple enough piece that contains the melody too, so one doesn't have to sing it. (Very few of my guitar students are singers, or want to be.)
Most alternating bass pieces are either song accompaniments (just chord patterns to be sung over), or are instrumentals too tricky for beginners.

One I use is Mississippi John Hurt's Pay Day. It's a song, but has the melody in the guitar part too. It's in open D, no chord shapes to worry about, just a major pentatonic melody on the top 2 strings. Even easier than Freight Train!

I have tab if you want it, but you could probably work it out just by playing along!

If that's TOO simple, then a more intermediate piece could be Windy and Warm:


A cute little instrumental in drop D - with some harmonics - is Bert Jansch's Tinker's Blues:

Very short, but easily extended with improvisation. I have tabs.
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Last edited by JonPR; 06-12-2019 at 04:11 AM.
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Old 06-12-2019, 05:40 AM
Mandobart Mandobart is offline
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Lots of Doc Watson songs - Deep River Blues, Watson's Blues, Blue Railroad Train
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Old 06-12-2019, 08:54 AM
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rick-slo rick-slo is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AllanAnd View Post
I've been playing "Freight Train" by Elizabeth Cotten in an easy arrangement by Tony Polecastro.

Can anyone suggest other tunes like this to further develop my fingerstyle playing and where to get tabs?
On my tabs link in my signature I have my arrangements of "Freight Train" and "Deep River Blues".
You may want to listen to the midi links to see if interested. The arrangements are quite a bit harder
though. Also you may like learning my tune "Scamp" which is posted there.
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Old 06-12-2019, 08:54 AM
M Hayden M Hayden is offline
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Duck baker’s arrangement of Will the circle be unbroken
Fahey’s arrangement of in Christ there is no east or west
Jackson Browne’s Cocaine
Reverend Gary Davis’ Death don’t have no mercy

All can be done simply and can become more complex as your technique improves.
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Old 06-12-2019, 09:11 AM
godfreydaniel godfreydaniel is offline
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Here’s another easy John Hurt song taught by John Miller, My Creole Belle:

https://youtu.be/kFg3TW5FpfU
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Old 06-12-2019, 09:43 AM
AllanAnd AllanAnd is offline
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You people are the best! Thank You very much - now I will get to work on Some of your suggestions!
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Old 06-12-2019, 09:54 AM
reeve21 reeve21 is offline
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My teacher had me buy these 2 books. I've just finished the Steve James' book and just started Rick Rubin's.

https://www.amazon.com/Fingerstyle-B...YE6V95AFA9FA78

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/14...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

The tunes are short, mostly 12 or 16 bar blues, but you can make up your own turn arounds to repeat. They will get you playing up the neck and using a lot off different techniques--droning and alternating bass, hammers on and off, slides, bends, palm muting, open tunings, slide on the fretting hand, etc. The come with downloadable sound files. Don't try to play them at the same speed as the author

There are some familiar tunes, but most are the author's own compositions "in the style of_______________." I found them challenging, but not impossible, and could play them almost mistake free after a week or 2. For reference, I'm a long time strummer who started finger picking about 2 and half years ago.

Mark Hanson also has some good books, which include 2 different arrangements of Freight Train and lots of other good stuff, not limited to blues tunes. Many here got started with his resources.
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Old 06-12-2019, 09:55 AM
sirwhale sirwhale is offline
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I like a lot of the suggestions above. I think some Fahey songs are a great place to start.

In Christ there is no East or West (as mentioned above)
Some summer day
Take a look at that baby

Daddystovepipe (from youtube) has a free beginners tab called Good Morning Blues.
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Old 06-12-2019, 10:46 AM
GCWaters GCWaters is offline
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“living in the country” by Pete Seeger...
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Old 06-12-2019, 03:59 PM
GGNJ GGNJ is offline
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Check out David Hamburger’s FRETBOARD CONFIDENTIAL on Utube for a series of 6 instructional videos on Fingerstyle Blues. He also has numerous courses on TrueFire.
I’ve really progressed using his great teaching style.
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Old 06-12-2019, 04:57 PM
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Most of my fingerstyle learning has come by way of Toby Walker (Www.littletobywalker.com).

He has lessons for all stages of your journey and will gladly help you along cia e-mail.
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Old 06-12-2019, 04:59 PM
M Hayden M Hayden is offline
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So much good music, so little time to learn it all....
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Old 06-12-2019, 05:36 PM
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Mark Hanson has a few things you might be interested in. www.accentonmusic.com
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Old 06-17-2019, 06:32 AM
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When I play Freight Train, it is a combination of three Freight Train arrangements. The first is the relatively simple arrangement Mark Hanson presents in his Contemporary Travis Picking book. As I finish that I roll into Tony Polecastro’s arrangement. As I finish that arrangement, I roll into Mark’s more complicated (but fun to play) arrangement he offers in the Art of Solo Fingerstyle book. All are in the key of C so it’s very easy to put them together and it makes for a very cool presentation of the song.

Freight Train and Windy and Warm are two “rites of passage” every aspiring solo fingerstylist should try to learn and master IMO. That is the wisdom of CGP’s Tommy Emmanuel and John Knowles.

Have fun!
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