In this week’s guitar lesson, learn how to play an original fingerstyle composition in drop D tuning. I’ll show you how to easily tune your guitar to Drop D and will discuss some of the advantages to this tuning. I’ll also show you how you can take this simple rhythm and expand upon it, creating your own compositions. This lesson is great for anyone, beginner – advanced, it also works well on acoustic or electric guitar.
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Scott S says
I am really enjoying learning this. Thank
hi brian paulyj here this is my 2nd year with active melody and it has been a great help,i dig it heeps,just one thing have you thought of some willie nellson style lessons as are prety hard to find
Hey Paulyj – yes I will definitely be doing an “in the style of” for Willie Nelson. It’s on my to-do list.. hopefully will get to it in the next couple of weeks!
thanks brian i’ll be looking forward to it.
Great lesson, Brian. A lesson in open G would also be nice. Thanks.
The YouTube video on video 1 doesn’t play properly… Black White bars squiggly lines.. sound is OK. ..suggest u repost
@Neiles335 - I can’t replicate this. checked it on multiple sources. Try using a different browser to see if it’s something w/ your browser settings.
This dropped D tuning reminds me of Steve Stills.
Klickitat Jim says
DING DING DING! My thoughts zactly!
skye high says
I really like this lesson.Its not that hard to play and once you get going with it,its difficult to stop. Thanks again.
Very cool indeed Brain, thanks for solving the mystery, and really gota say thanks! learning so much so easily makes playing guitar a pure joy again..
Brian, Thanks for the effort you have made to give us another great lesson.
Hi Brian, you’d be thinking of Midnight Rider by the Allman Brothers at about 21:46 I’m pretty sure. : ) ~ Don
Mike Green says
Little Martha ???? Would be nice as well. You think it’s possible??
Works great on my Jaguar. Love this groove
Just take one section, go over it and over it, slowly, for a whole hour if need be. Sometimes close your eyes, and let your fingers and thumb go on auto pilot. Like to C to G bit, it’s a little skip - keep tapping your foot and get the bass to go with the tap. I actually punched myself in the face once I got so cross - but it does come!!
I have a very difficult time learning to fingerpick. Can’t seem to get the hang of it. I’m going to work at this lesson. see if I can progress
Jim McD says
Drop D, for me, has all the advantages of an open tuning plus the versatility of standard tuning. I already do a lot in drop D, and this just adds tons to my possibilities.
I’m a little surprised, though, (like THOMOKEL that you don’t mention Crosby Stills and Nash (although you do allude to Neil Young). If I were going to arrange Judy Blue-eyes, this is pretty much exactly where I’d start.
Wonderful piece in Drop D, love it ! The acoustic lessons are the reason, I became a member. Thank you for keeping us acoustic guys happy.
This helped me with the steady thumb - I was able to play the lead without the thumb while keeping time tapping my foot so I thought, why not think of my thumb as my foot keeping time. Odd, but mentally it made it easier for me & I was then able to keep a steady rhythm with my thumb. Hope it helps others.
I played the drone D note on my looper and played the rest of the piece until I felt comfortable. I agree with Donzo about the foot stomp. For me when it clicked, it clicked.
I can almost always hear a touch of Clapton in Brian’s fills. Very tasty.
Great lesson. Thank you.
Canada Moose says
ditto, great lesson. But it’s a challenge for me because I’ve been doing alternating thumb (Travis) picking for 50 yrs, so it’s tough NOT alternating my thumb. But like the others say, just putting in the practice time should get that steady thumb groove going. Great fun, thanks again.
mick pierce says
great tune brian thanks for all the help it you realy are a help to get me back into guitar many many thanks again
I wasn’t even going to try this one because I haven’t had much luck with finger picking. I picked right up on this though and it sounds great. this is a great lesson for those of us who are having trouble with this style. thanks Brian , great lesson !
In my post on 1/27/15 I meant to say 12:15 not 21:46. Yikes, must’ve been pretty tired that night. Anyway, I’m hearing a little bit of a Midnight Rider riff at that point. Thanks for the great lessons Brian!
NIce tune Brian. I enjoy learning these somewhat easy pieces that have lots of things you can use elsewhere.
Been having a lot of fun with this one Brian, I’ve been fooling around with my own solo riffs between the chords, and I play just fingerstyle so I like not having a pick. Plucking the chords, once you get it down, sounds great.
Thanks for the great lesson. I found you just when I was looking to branch out and learn how to take my development to another level of strumming and picking with more of an improv free flow sound. Can’t wait to dig into the other lessons. The vids that break it down are perfect for what I need and the tabs are very useful. This is what I have been looking for in online lessons.
Bud Miller says
Its been 30 yrs since I picked up a guitar, but I saw your lessons on youtube and I thought I can do this. I always wanted to learn to play finger style but never seemed to have the time when I was young, but now I am 75 and have the time. Been working on the Chet Atkins lesson #57 . still fumbling around trying to get the thumb indipendit from the fingers but making slow progress. My goal is to some day play Freight Train. Thanks Brian you are a God send.
I am having so much fun with your lessons, they are wonderful. I love how you can make me understand the theory behind it all and it’s still loads of fun. Cheers Dave
Charles O says
Enjoyed this lesson very much. Reminds me of Stephen Stills some, Could you do a lesson on one of his tunes call Black Queen.
It has an unusual tuning but one of my all time favorites.
Marcus G says
Love learning this. I love finger style, and never use a pick. i have been looking for stuff for a while, thank the lord you popped up in my FB feed….
M & N says
Like this one I think im hearing pink floyd in this one? blue sky?
Sarah J says
Brian, can you make more original fingerstyle guitar lessons? Something in DADGAD? or another one in Drop D. We love them!
Mick D says
Hi Parlorpicker, I thought that, too.
In the first video you make reference to looping the parts but there doesn’t seem to be any way to loop these videos. Am I missing something?