Monday, June 12, 2006

Playing the Guitar

One thing you ought to know about me is that I am a guitar player. And I like to fingerpick. There are ome folks call it thumb picking.

This was a style made popular by Merle Travis and Chet Atkins. It was originally developed by Mose Rager and Ike Everly. They were a couple of Kentucky boys from way back in the day. I guess originally the style came from some of the old blues players. Though not commonly used today, the term "Travis picking" was once widely understood to describe the common style of alternating-bass fingerpicking used by American fingerpickers from the 1950s into the 1970s, after the great country guitarist and songwriter Merle Travis.

American fingerstyle guitar is commonly played on steel string acoustic guitars with 6 or 12 strings. While it is played on just about every type of guitar, these are most common and characteristic. Music arranged for American fingerstyle playing can include chords, arpeggios and other elements such as artificial harmonics, hammering on and pulling off with the fretting hand, using the body of the guitar percussively, and many other techniques.

American primitive guitar is a subset of American fingerstyle guitar. It originated with John Fahey, whose first record album Blind Joe Death (1959) inspired many guitarists such as Leo Kottke, who made his debut recording of 6 and 12 String Guitar on Fahey's Takoma label in 1969. American primitive guitar can be characterized by the use of folk music or folk-like material, driving alternating-bass fingerpicking with a good deal of repetitious ostinato patterns, and the use of alternative tunings (scordatura) such as open D and drop D

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