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Fretting-Hand Technique

This lesson is part of the course Melodic Mandolin Tunes with John Reischman.
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Learn great traditional and original tunes in a variety of styles—old-time, bluegrass, Latin, jazz, and more—from a modern mandolin master.
 
 
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Itzbin Reel
 
“Itzbin Reel” is one of the first tunes John wrote. It’s basically a fiddle tune in the key of A, although the form is AABA rather than the standard AABB form of most fiddle tunes, and the B section has ten measures instead of the standard eight. John starts by showing you the A major scale and a couple of scale patterns to get used to the key of A major. And then he starts taking apart each section slowly, phrase by phrase. He also talks about keeping a steady up-and-down motion with your picking hand so you stay in time even when you’re not sounding a note. This is helpful in “Itzbin Reel,” because it has a few syncopated phrases that emphasize offbeats.
 
 
 
The Melodic Mandolin Tunes Subscription Includes:
  • More than 60 melodic mandolin tunes in a variety of styles
  • Right- and left-hand technique lessons
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  • Detailed notation and tablature for each tune
  • Play-Along videos so you can play along with John
  • Downloadable audio MP3s of each tune
 
 
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Fretting-Hand Technique  
 
Fretting-Hand Technique  
 
Fretting-Hand Technique
Fretting-Hand Technique
 
John demonstrates his fretting-hand technique in this video. He talks about using the proper fingers in open position, with the index finger playing the first and second frets, middle finger playing the third and fourth frets, ring finger playing the fifth and sixth, and pinky playing the seventh. He also gives you an exercise that will help you learn that fingering (and also work your pinky), and talks about playing cleanly by fretting close to the fret as well as creating a smooth legato line by letting the notes sustain into each other. You’ll also learn the two closed-position scale positions he uses.

  Fretting-Hand Technique (Available to subscribers)
 
 
 
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A great value in an A-style mandolin from Saga Music, with solid woods and vintage-style appointments.
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Joe K. Walsh set a William Butler Yeats poem to music and plays it here with an all-star band, live at the Great Lakes Music Camp last fall.
 
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    ● Live Workshops
    ● Instructors
    ● Sample Lessons
    ● Notation Guide
    ● For Beginners
 
 
    ● Vintage Vault
    ● New Gear
    ● Fine Lutherie
 
 
    ● Workshops
    ● Advice
    ● Repertoire
 
 
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    ● In The Studio
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