Marcel Ardans

I know this is a big hurdle for bluegrass guitar players. We learn our first fiddle tune melodies, our first licks, our first runs and our first breaks in first position. So how do we demystify the rest of the neck so we can ascend and descend it freely? The good news is you probably don’t need to memorize every note on the fretboard. In fact, most guitar players are visualizing much smaller frameworks as they travel the neck.

This may be banjoist Molly Hazel’s first release as a solo artist but she is no stranger to the bluegrass scene. When Molly was only 13, her family created The Pearce Family Bluegrass Band and toured the United States; self-releasing Not For Sale in 2004, Guilty in 2006, and Home in 2012.

You know me from YouTube right? I’m a bluegrass guy. What am I doing writing about electric country licks? Well my bluegrass friends recently got together and decided to start a honky-tonk band. That meant I was going to be getting my tele out of the case and I needed to know some more country language. So I got online and I started poking around but like always, the good information I needed was behind a pay wall.

I’m sure we’ve all seen more than one bluegrass instructional book in our day. You probably have a stack including a Hal Leonard something or other, maybe a book with Tony Rice hugging a guitar and probably some books you’d rather forget. Sadly these books probably don’t come off the shelf very often. Maybe they’re not as useful as you once thought they would be or they’re an example of…

If you’re going to do anything with music you should make sure you’re clear on a few fundamentals. Yes, even bluegrass requires a little music theory. Don’t worry though! This isn’t one of those guitar articles that starts with, “when playing Lydian Dominant over a #11 bVI chord that you’re using for a tri-tone substitution in a circle of fifths chord progression try using the…

We’ve all heard the phrase “stick to the melody!” before. Normally those words are shouted by a bluegrass festival veteran in the direction of a pre-teen Chris Thile play-a-like. But far from a traditional versus progressive dividing line, these comments often come from the same traditionalist that will applaud a completely improvisational Tony Rice break.