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Mark Wilson

Closed position playing made easy

Rating: 2 votes, 4.50 average.
Up to now I've pre-learned the solos I pick. That works OK for fiddle tunes in the jams I attend. Except for vocal tunes. You never know where the capo will land on those tunes and what key the singer will want. So there I am playing chords and shaking off a break on Banks of the Ohio, because the only key I know the solo is in G and the singer is using E.

I have the famous FFcp book. TBH I tied it too soon and never got on with it. But I always understood it was key.

Enter a lesson I took on Peghead Nation. "Closed Position Solos:"
It's a lesson from Joe Walsh using G major scale in the second position (index finger anchored on G - 5th fret of A string) He breaks down the pattern over 2 lessons including adding blue notes and double stops.

His teaching style is geared to someone past their 1st year so it goes along without tedious beginner detail. And finally - for the first time - I get it.

A couple hours playing the lesson, "I'll Fly Away" (Closed Position Solos -Part 2 Blue notes) and I began to find the notes in the pattern by ear.

The next morning - I sat down and played "Banks of the Ohio" in E (woohoo!) on the first slow attempt. Just dropped the pattern down 4 frets and used my ear. No more wondering where that note is. Or where the double stops are for a new key. They are in the same place every time. Just shift.

This morning I improvised a pretty nice version 'Bury me Beneath the Willow' in 3 keys. In a week or two I'm hoping to be able to hit these vocal tunes on the fly at jams.

I'm sure many knew this without a lesson. I tried the book and I'm just not a book person I guess. I'm hoping now the book will be more accessible to me now that I've got one pattern under my fingers and know how to apply it.

Recommending this Joe Walsh Peghead Nation lesson for pickers who are looking for a easy to understand lesson to break into the freedom of closed position playing. NFI - just passing on a good experience.

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