The Mandolin Picker's Guide to Bluegrass Improvisation
A new book on improvisation is now available for bluegrass mandolin players. Based on the concept of learning by playing, the 200 page book covers a wide range of improvisation tools and how to implement them in your playing. A large number of examples are presented in both tablature and standard notation, so that a theoretical background is not required. The small amount of theory needed is simply presented and easily learned step by step. A series of exercises designed to help the player develop improvisational skills are included in the book. As an instruction tool, the book can easily be combined with the instructor’s individual philosophy or by a student wishing to study alone. The subject matter is varied in difficulty and can be used by both the beginner and more advanced player as an instructional guide and reference book. The major-themes in the book are: The pentatonic sound, - Slow / stationary / scale and major-chord based improvising with any Bluegrass-Tune,) - Double-stop improvisation, - Minor chords and Keys, - The blues sound, - Melody oriented improvisation, - How to use: Monroe Style, Cross picking, Hot licks, - and how to simplify a lick, - etc.
All 292 examples contained in the book can be found in the recordings. In order to give the reader the best impression of the examples and to make it easier to play along, they’re all recorded at a medium tempo accompanied by an acoustic guitar. The recordings also contain some rhythm-tracks to be used for training improvisation techniques.