Fred Sokolow is best known as the author of a library of instructional books and DVDs for guitar, banjo, Dobro, mandolin, lap steel and ukulele. There are currently over a hundred of his books or DVDs in print, sold all over the world. Fred has long been a well-known West Coast multi-string performer and recording artist, particularly on the acoustic music scene. The diverse musical genres covered in his books and DVDs, along with several bluegrass, jazz and rock CDs he has released, demonstrate his mastery of many musical styles. Whether he's playing Delta bottleneck blues, bluegrass or old-time banjo, 30s swing guitar or screaming rock solos, he does it with authenticity and passion.
Born in Los Angeles September 14, 1945, by the early 1960s Fred was well known in the California bluegrass scene, playing with Jody Stecher, Brantley Kearns, Sandy Rothman and Eric Thompson. Relocating to Berkeley, he toured and recorded with a hippie rock band throughout most of the 60s, the Bay Area-based Notes From the Underground (Vanguard Records). In the early 70s Fred performed with R&B, rock, country and bluegrass bands. By 1975 Fred had played with bluegrass luminaries like John Herald, Frank Wakefield and Jerry Garcia, had opened for the Dead, the Doors, B.B. King, Country Joe and the Fish and countless other acts.
When you know how chord progressions work, it's much easier to learn new songs. And when you understand a song's chord structure, you're not just memorizing letter names; in fact, you can play the tune in any key. Learning how songs are put together also develops your musical ear and enhances your appreciation of music in general.
In this lesson, Fred draws from several musical genres (rock, blues, jazz, pop and country) to illustrate many standard types of chord movement and song structures. You'll learn about chord families, the twelve bar blues, circle-of-fifths changes, diatonic chord movement and more. Along the way you'll learn how to play and comprehend the progressions of many classic tunes, including All of Me, Every Day I Have the Blues, Blue Skies, Your Cheatin' Heart, Blue Moon, Mister Sandman, Honeysuckle Rose, Like a Rolling Stone, Ain't Misbehavin', I Got Rhythm and more.
Fred explains everything in terms of the guitar fretboard, so you'll not only learn to play these songs, you'll learn how to use your guitar to understand music theory.
Bonus tracks: Fred talks about his Songbook Series
109 minutes • Level 1/2 • Detailed tab/music PDF file on the DVD
Review: The best guitar teacher I know: Why does music work the way it does, what comes next in a progression? Fred explains in clear brilliantly simple style the theory behind the movement of music, the pattern that remains the same, even though the key can change, the structure that makes the song. This is a rosetta stone for musical understanding and Fred is the man who helps you understand it without obfuscation and ego, but with the clarity of a teacher who really knows music inside out. He's a brilliant teacher and a really good player. Buy this dvd, buy all his dvd's they're the best way to learn guitar that I've found. Fred is great! – Samantha Lewis/Amazon Customer Review
Review: In his calm and natural style, Fred explains song organization with a mix of licks, chords, songs and theory. You will learn a lot about how to listen for chord progressions by watching and playing along with very accessible instruction for guitarists of all levels. – Ron Chibnik/Amazon Customer Review
Review: Music theory made practical. This is a very good video. It goes beyond what the title implies. He covers chord progressions, song structure, and the circle of fifths and how they relate to the guitar. Also covered is chords and diatonic melody structures. He relates it all to position in the scale so you can transpose to any key. It would be hard to say too many good things about this video. It demystifies how you actually use the dreaded music theory in a practical way. – David L. Murray/Amazon Customer Review