Watch the Gallopin' online guitar lesson by Jason Loughlin from 30 Country Jazz Licks You MUST Know
Chester Burton Atkins, aka “Mister Guitar”. Chet Atkins' guitar style changed the course of country guitar playing. His style can be summed up as a combination of Merle Travis, Django Reinhardt, and Andre Segovia. His fingerstyle arrangements use an alternating bass line on the bottom three strings and melody on the top three; same concept as stride piano. He was incredibly prolific, putting out multiple records a year, sometimes up to five! His techniques and arrangements were always innovative and inspired.
It was rumored that Chet wasn't a big fan of country music, he was more into jazz. Erroll Garner was one of his heroes. Chet went on to champion other great guitarists with a flare for jazz like Lenny Breau and Danny Gatton.
In addition to playing and arranging, Chet was a great producer and label exec. He became head of RCA in Nashville and through his production and eye for talent helped establish the “Nashville Sound”. However, no accomplishment could be overshadowed by his world class guitar playing. This lick is a forward roll through a II-V progression in D. The chords that Chet chose bring attention to the extensions of the chord. Even though the band is playing E7-A7-D, we're playing E9-A13-D to create a lusher sound.