One simply cannot talk about people of importance to this genre without tipping the hat to the most masterful musician, teacher, musicologist, producer, folklorist and preservationist of the traditional blues. By now, Stefan Grossman is a venerated, iconoclastic and respected acoustic blues figure of mega-proportions. He came out of the vibrant Greenwich Village, New York, 1960s scene around Washington Square, where so many American folk and blues musicians launched their careers. His friend and occasional collaborator, Steve Katz, formerly of the Even Dozen Jug Band, the Blues Project and Blood, Sweat & Tears, once half jokingly told this writer: “There we were, all these New York Jews playing the black blues.” Indeed, the blues had a strong influence on young New Yorkers during the folk revival. These musicians, Stefan Grossman, Happy & Artie Traum, Danny Kalb, and many others, in turn had a powerful influence on the acceptance of the blues by the American baby boomer generation at large; and, they significantly helped to launch the folk, roots & blues revival, thereby reinvigorating the careers of many original blues musicians whose careers had waned.
Many people know Stefan Grossman as the paramount teacher and entrepreneur in what has become the world’s largest “blues school”, Stefan Grossman’s Guitar Workshop. He is one of the most skilled guitarists in the genre, having been a student of Rev. Gary Davis in New York City. He also picked up lessons directly from Mississippi John Hurt, Son House, Skip James, Mississippi Fred McDowell, and others.
In this series of three lessons a variety of styles, techniques and approaches are presented that will help you develop both your hands. Each lesson focuses on the development of your left and right hands and uses challenging licks and phrases from blues, ragtime, jazz and contemporary settings. Rhythmic techniques of Rev.Gary Davis, the blues vibrato of Lonnie Johnson, and the walking bass of Merle Travis are but a few of the techniques we touch upon.
Lesson One: Finger strengthening exercises; the hammer-on and pull-off, single string runs and counterpoint movements.
Lesson Two: Blues vibrato; the syncopated fingerstyle Blind Blake bass; rhythmic licks from Rev.Gary Davis.
Lesson Three: Walking the bass, chromatic runs and hot licks; end tags.
Level 2/3 • 32 page tab/music book with three compact discs