I've been getting a little rusty on my mando chops... (grrr... Too much guitar nowadays as my band lost... err fired... our other guitarist months ago - becoming a "Power Twang Trio"). We're finally at a point where we all have agreed to hire another six stringer, which means I can dust off my mandolin and pedal steel again (I like 8 strings on both by the way!). The addition of a 5-string electric fiddler has really helped out, and this luck has made us think just maybe I could be made free again of constant Gretsch & Archtop Acoustic abuse with an acoustic guitarist. We are not a Western Swing band (not yet... heh!) but both the fiddler and I are big Bob Wills, Jethro Burns, and classic Honky Tonk Fans. So, selfishly enough, I've been wanting to bone up my Western Swing chops.
I've been sweating and swearing through Jethro Burns' method (not enough swing, at least at first...) and Tiny Moore's method (not enough music, very good exercises though) and wondering if anyone had some more insight, especially stuff with "play along" recordings. I suppose, if I was more ambitious, I could record some "jam tracks" and bone up that way - but songwriting/recording keeps me busy on the Mac enough and I get sick of sitting in front of a mic when I practice. I have the Carr "Hot Mandolin Styles" video, which is great, until you realize there is no chord work and a really... umm... mediocre selection of source material (Ok, "You Are My Sunshine" is royalty free, but couldn't we shell out a few pennies for a Bob Wills' tune?).
I know a few of you play this stuff, and many of you enjoy it - where do I go?Are there any fiddle DVDs anyone has used. I have Cashdollar's Western Swing Steel Guitar vids and they are PHENOMENAL. Where is the love for the mandolin??? Any suggestions.
Also, I wouldn't mind everyone's input on general jazz material, as I'm leaning hard back in that direction in general. I was somewhat jazz trained on guitar (private lessons/community college) but I really don't want to go straight down the Aebersold road (ouch! Some of those books hurt!), at least not yet. I'm not looking for Bird or Coltrane yet, either. Opinions of Statman's "Jazz Mandolin" are also solicited...
Enough babbling... your help is more than appreciated!