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5 Free Guitar Lessons in the Style of Merle Travis, Chet Atkins, & Jerry Reed

These 6 free guitar lessons are from Gareth Pearson’s Travis, Atkins & Reed Guidebook, Merle Travis, Chet Atkins, and Jerry Reed’s innovative techniques and creative approaches are a great asset to any fingerstyle guitar player or singer songwriter. In the Travis, Atkins & Reed Guidebook, you’ll learn the main principles and fundamentals of their playing and demonstrate how to inject their techniques into your own playing.

Giddy Up Uh Lick

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I don’t know why I’ve always called this picking pattern the “Giddy Up Uh” lick. Perhaps it’s because it always reminds me of riding a horse, whether it’s the sound the lick creates without that open G string, or the actually playing of itself. After practicing this lick for some time, the right-hand fingering should become mechanical, and your fingers should gallop to the beat. Like most exercises, start slow then build up the speed.

Merle Monster

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“Merle Monster” is a tune I composed to pay tribute to all the Merle Travis techniques we’ve been studying. It consists of the Travis chord shapes, right thumb and index finger technique, the “Giddy Up Uh” lick, fast lead lines, banjo rolls, and heavy rolls with bend. So, make sure you’ve studied all the previous elements before tackling this piece.

Chet Chattin’ Away

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This tune requires the same Chet style thumb technique we previously studied. It contains extra chord voicings and new ways to play melodies. I’m using some pretty 6th harmonies towards the end.

Polyphonic Funk

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“Polyphonic Funk” is a Jerry Reed sounding piece. The groove requires the Jerry Reed clawing concept, stabbing the chords on beats 2 and 4 while combining a bass melody played with the thumb and index finger. The second part of the song contains the polyphonic melody line against the bass line.

Chordal Pull Off Licks

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This is a lick played on only three strings, the D, G, and B string. We’ll be using the thumb, index, and middle finger grip together.

Dig these Travis, Atkins & Reed Guidebook Guitar Lessons? Download Gareth Pearson’s Travis, Atkins & Reed Guidebook for much more including tab, notation, and jam tracks!