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Thread: easy to learn songs for mandolin

  1. #1
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    greetings mandolin forum/group - I bought a mandolin yesterday and I am looking for a nudge in the right direction to find some easy to play= well known songs to get going ( I can play guitar, so have a strum hand... of sorts) I followed a link on the forum to find some two fingered chords ...v useful in a quick start .... but if anyone can direct me to 'solo' playing ...style (I dont even know what it is called !!) i would be grateful.
    thanks

  2. #2
    Registered User Lane Pryce's Avatar
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    Hello Amanda and welcome to the cafe! For some easy tunes look at the Essential tunes on the Mandozine site. You will need to download and install tabel edit to veiw and print the files. They are all free and its a great resource too. Welcome aboard!! Lp
    J.Lane Pryce

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    Many many thanks for your welcome and info/advice - I have followed your instructions and found the tab edit prog and downloaded... but when I try to use it - ie click on play a tune, nothing happens ... except an expty stave pops up - no matter which tune I select from 'essential tunes' --- somehow I have made a wrong turn methinks

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    You can always download them and open the files. Something is awry with the association and command line or where your temp files go; it's hard to say without seeing your computer. Right click on the the tab file links and choose download and put them somewhere on your computer, then open them from there. You won't need to be online to play. BTW, as far as simple songs go, you can certainly use your guitar knowledge and songbook and just look up the same chords for mando. Open C, G and D are all 2 finger chords and you will get plenty of mileage.
    "First you master your instrument, then you master the music, then you forget about all that ... and just play"
    Charlie "Bird" Parker

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    Registered User Steve Cantrell's Avatar
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    Hey Amanda. Buy Roland White's book. It has a lot of standards and CDs that have both slow and fast versions. It was a great resource when I first started. Good luck!
    Steven E. Cantrell
    Campanella A

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    Registered User John Flynn's Avatar
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    Amanda: I don't disagree with any of the advice above, but one thing that really helped me and I have seen help others doesn't cost anything and doesn't rely on technology. That is: Start trying to learn tunes you already have in your head on the mandolin. Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star, Frere Jacques, The Muffin Man, pop tunes, whatever. Also learn the major scales by ear. Do, Re, Me, etc. First of all, you will learn those more quickly than you will with most books or online resources, giving you a feeling of accomplishment and making it fun. Second, it will start to develop your ear-brain-hand connection on the mandolin, which is what it all comes down to. Third, it will start to get you familiar with the with the fretboard.

    Case in point: My wife is a beginner on the dulcimer. She tried books, an instructor and then classes and through it all really felt intimidated. What finally got her going was me coaching her to play some of those really basic tunes and her finding out she could actually play them. And I don't even play the dulcimer!

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    thanks for all advice - much appreciated - I have already mastered the D and G chords (two fingered versions!) and it really does make you think that you CAN master the mandolin - and what fun! love it

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    Just remember that the only thing harder than learning something is unlearning something -- particularly a bad habit. So while being self-taught is a marvelous thing, try to find out enough to avoid bad habits.

    For me it was the down/up picking. When you're plucking out the muffin man or whatever, and you DON'T go down/up, you'll hit a brick wall developmentally. Read some posts about down/up and learn this technique sooner rather than later.

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