Country pickers .... favorite entry level solos

skylabfilmpop

Member
Messages
554
I enjoy a lot of country guitar but sometimes feel like I get spun into pieces with right hand work that is too advanced. Any of you country players have some favorite pieces that are good for people getting their feet wet with country guitar ?
 

chillybilly

Member
Messages
3,637
Hmmm...it's more of a vocabulary than repeating a sentence isn't it? As spare as they are at times, those Scotty Moore and Luther Perkins licks are still huge parts of the idiom with all manner of variations from there along with Don Rich and those he influenced like Pete Anderson.
 

scratchwound

Member
Messages
16
Liza Jane. Not to say that it's entry level per se, but there's a lot there than one can dig into, and a lot of that solo is approachable right away.
 

ripgtr

Member
Messages
9,210
Mama tried
Working Man Blues.
Liza Jane.
Ok, I play these songs in a country band, I've gigged country professionally, and I know these solos note for note. Not easy at all.

Mama Tried, the first part is pretty easy but that low lick on the end of the solo? Yea, not easy to pull off if you are trying to nail it. Oh, and that opening acoustic part. Holy moly is that a bear to pull off right. I can but usually fudge it at gigs, since you got one shot at it.

Working man? The vid is pretty good, and he is close, but I've worked on that a ton. The song came up in a discussion, someone claimed he originally did it with a capo, and after digging, found out that, yea, he did. And the licks worked WAY better that way. Burton is on fire on this one, and the little nuances that really give it its flavor will drive you nuts, trying to get them.

Now Liza Jane. WAY freaking hard. I worked on that one for two weeks, slowing it down and there is still one lick I am not 100% sure of. It is a burner and you got to be on top of your game to pull it off. Not even close to entry level.

Now, I will say, dig in, heck, if you get ONE lick out of any of them, you are on the right track. Liza Jane is a flat out gold mine of cool ideas.

If you are looking for easier Merle stuff, Bottle Let me Down and Swinging doors are pretty easy. Lonesome fugitive is dead easy - did that one tonight. Buck's Love's going to Live here Again is pretty straight ahead.

I think it would be great for anyone to work on any of these, there is so much to learn from trying to learn any of these, but entry level? I wouldn't call them entry level at all.
 
Last edited:

kinmike

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
1,808
Try the country style solo in outro to this Carpenter's cover of Please Mr. Postman. Same key as the Beatles (A). It's easy, it has a lot of country guitar clichés and sounds pretty good, although darker in tone compared to today's standard. Outro starts at 2:03.

 

Tim Bowen

Member
Messages
3,481
James Burton turned in a perfect eight bar ride on I'm a Lonesome Fugitive. In his version, Roy Buchanan was quite reverential to the melody that Burton had tracked with Haggard, but turned the break into a 16 bar form and provided additional theme development and chicken grease.



Before I went back in and copped some of what guys like Don Rich and Roy Nichols and James Burton were doing, I was a rock guy who suddenly found himself needing to play some country music for gigs. I was clueless. I built a shaky little foundation with major pentatonics via Eagles and Allman Brothers Band (Dickey Betts) tunes and rides, and also picked up some little country, rockabilly, and Travis picking things from Jimmy Page and Steve Howe. From there I discovered Roy Buchanan and then went backwards with my studies, working with older country music itself.
 

ripgtr

Member
Messages
9,210
James Burton turned in a perfect eight bar ride on I'm a Lonesome Fugitive
Is it Burton? I haven't 100% confirmed it was him, Merle used a lot of different lead pickers. Could be Phil Bough, who played on Bottle let me down. Kind of does sound a bit like him, but I'm not sure.

Anyway, the genius of the solo is that he is hitting the note bent a whole step and then bringing it down for those first 3 licks. Give's a real lonesome sound. So he has the note bent to pitch before he even hits it - not a super easy thing to do, lol. Oh, and that stutter when he slides down to the 5, I think I know what he is doing but can't get exactly like that. Geez, even the easy stuff is hard. ;-) But easy to cope the general feel of it.

Edit: note - the recording of Lonesome fugitive is in F#. A lot of Merle stuff at this time seems to be tuned down to Eb. Buck was doing that too in the early 60s. They both went back to standard later from what I hear on live videos and such
 
Last edited:

ripgtr

Member
Messages
9,210
Any of you country players have some favorite pieces
So, I want to say something after my other posts. GO learn Working man blues. If you cope 1/3 of it, you will have a ton to work with. I've yet to hear anyone actually get it exact, I can get it close but there are a couple little things that still allude me. And I've been playing that song 40 years. And if you get the general feel and sound of it, you can easily gig it. 99.9% of pickers play that first lick and then use it for a chance to take off. A lot of it is actually kind of too rockabilly for a modern sound anyway.
Liza Jane, it has about 40 licks you can steal. When I learned it, I got the first bit down first and found about 457 different ways of using it or something similar or general idea. Just a ton of useful info.

I just don't think any of them are "easy" in the sense that you are going to sit down in a day and play them note for note. That ain't gonna happen. But ... There is a lot of good stuff to steal. Go steal it.
 

Tim Bowen

Member
Messages
3,481
Is it Burton? I haven't 100% confirmed it was him, Merle used a lot of different lead pickers. Could be Phil Bough, who played on Bottle let me down. Kind of does sound a bit like him, but I'm not sure.
It's Burton. Lots of pickers on that Haggard record, including Glen Campbell, but that's Burton.

Here's an instrumental spin on the tune from the Burton/Mooney record from 1968. James plays the ride @ 1:18, sounds really close to what he cut in 1966 with Haggard.

 

ripgtr

Member
Messages
9,210
It's Burton. Lots of pickers on that Haggard record, including Glen Campbell, but that's Burton.

Here's an instrumental spin on the tune from the Burton/Mooney record from 1968. James plays the ride @ 1:18, sounds really close to what he cut in 1966 with Haggard.
Oh, cool, thanks.
Yea, I had forgotten it was on the album, I haven't listened to that in probably 10 years. Man, I need to dig that CD out, I love Mooney and I've been working on pedal steel a lot lately.

Yea, that really sounds like him, those bends are the same. And I can hear that run down better, I'm going to go cope that.

So: Confirmed. ;-)
 

ned7flat5

Member
Messages
4,582
Brent Mason’s solo in “Man I Feel Like A Woman” is a great example of a memorable solo using simple parts that at times utilises the underlying chords.
 

specialidiot

most likely to seceede
Platinum Supporting Member
Messages
3,676
As an "intermediate" player who sometimes dabbles in country, the two that come to mind are:

Chris Stapleton - Tennessee Whiskey: Both the intro and the solo are great fun. learn the verse and chorus rhythm parts too, great foundational stuff

Dwight Yoakam - Guitars, Cadillacs: really to me a perfect country song. The intro, fills, and first solo are worth learning but the second solo is sort of an intro to chicken pickin and double stops, country style. If I can do it, anyone can.


 




Trending Topics

Top