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Gold Rush, Part 4: Tony Rice’s Picking Style

This lesson is part of the course Advanced Flatpicking Guitar with Scott Nygaard.
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Learn the essential techniques of bluegrass flatpicking guitar through classic and lesser-known songs and tunes, from bluegrass blues to old-time fiddle tunes to country swing sounds.

 
 
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Home Sweet Home
 
In Part 2 of the lesson on crosspicking, you'll learn the first part of Scott's arrangement of "Home Sweet Home," which mostly uses the traditional 3-3-2 roll. Since crosspicking is usually used to play song melodies, it's a good idea to learn the melody of a song before tackling a crosspicking arrangement, so Scott starts by making sure you know the melody to "Home Sweet Home" and then takes the arrangement apart phrase by phrase (or roll by roll).
 
 
 
The Advanced Flatpicking Guitar Subscription Includes:
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  • Lessons on learning the fingerboard geared toward bluegrass and roots musicians
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Gold Rush  
 
Gold Rush  
 
Gold Rush, Part 4: Tony Rice’s Picking Style
Gold Rush, Part 4: Tony Rice’s Picking Style
 
Scott used Tony Rice’s version of “Gold Rush” as a model for this lesson, so this is a good time to talk about Tony’s picking, which some people have called “random,” but which actually conforms strictly to its own logic. Tony doesn’t use a strict alternating method, but rather intuitively chooses whether to play a down or up stroke on any given note based on the most efficient way to play those notes. The result is that his pick moves as little and as efficiently as possible while completely avoiding the “back pick” that requires you to jump over a string to get to the next note. While Scott doesn’t recommend this approach for most players—it’s actually very difficult to do and also maintain a smooth, solid rhythm—he demonstrates Tony’s picking approach on a few sections of the melody in “Gold Rush.”

  Tony Rice's Picking (Available to subscribers)
 
 
 
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    ● Vintage Vault
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    ● Repertoire
 
 
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