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Watch the African Rain: 1 online guitar lesson by Tony Smotherman from World Rock Guitar

African music brings a joyous feeling. I can remember hearing Ali Farka Toure (an African guitarist) for the first time and being blown away at the simplicity and deep feel that came out of his guitar; the way he made his guitar speak really grabbed my attention and hooked me on this music.

Chord progressions are not generally complicated in African music, and most often the melodies are taken from the pentatonic and major scales. In this example, we'll be using a first and second position G major scale. Using open strings is really helpful when playing or writing these melodies as they add to the overall organic feeling of the music. This upbeat style of African music is referred to as "Soukous."