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Watch the Kentucky Thumbpicking online guitar lesson by TrueFire from Play Acoustic Guitar 9: Advanced Style Variations

Merle Travis was instrumental in sparking wide interest in the guitar picking style known as Kentucky Thumbpicking but there were many others back in the day, as they are today, who helped give the style worldwide recognition. Alonzo Pennington presents 4 essential techniques and 1 performance study designed put a little bit of Kentucky into your acoustic bag.

TIP! A great way to stay excited about practicing something is if it starts to actually sound like the lesson. This is accomplished by getting down the technique, working it up to speed and so on. BUT, it is also important to try and get as close as you can to the sound and the tone of the instructor's guitar. They have been dialing in their tone for years so it makes sense to try and emulate what they are doing. Take your time and tweak on your amp - listen to what their guitar sounds like and get yours as close to that as you can. This will actually make your playing sound better to your ear and give you more confidence!