If you’ve ever wanted to learn to play Bluegrass Guitar, then Bluegrass Gospel is one of the greatest teachers you can have!
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How Bluegrass Gospel Inspired Me To Play Guitar
When I first picked up the guitar, it wasn’t to play in the many popular Bluegrass festivals around the country. I was only about 13 and all I wanted to do was play guitar in church. I had a deep desire to become part of the congregation by sharing my love of music. So I begged my grandma (affectionately known to us grandkids as “Ma”) to buy me these two VHS tapes—hopefully some of you know what those are :)—on how to play guitar.
Well, to my dismay these tapes mainly covered playing songs in melody format with musical notation at their core. I wasn’t interested in reading music at the time (something I deeply regret now that I didn’t have the patience for then); I was interested in playing Gospel guitar for the church.
But it wasn’t just an interest for helping the church, I truly was inspired by Bluegrass Gospel songs played by legends such as Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver, The Stanley Bros., Flatt & Scruggs, Reno & Smiley, and many others, and I wanted to play guitar like that, not just any old guitar style: Bluegrass Gospel!
Fast forward a few . . . Decades!
Fortunately, the two VHS tapes did contain many beginner chords for guitar, which I did find useful. Long story short, I learned how to play a few standard hymns like “Amazing Grace”, “Just As I Am”, and “I’ll Fly Away.” It was many years later before I began learning what we now refer to as “Flatpicking guitar” and applying the Flatpicking techniques (hammer-ons, pull-offs, slides, Open String Transitions, learning licks, Bluegrass-style strumming, etc.) to many Bluegrass Gospel standards such as “Unclouded Day”, “Jesus Is Coming Soon”, and “Glory to His Name” (seen in the videos above).
Now you too can benefit from all the experience I’ve gained to learn these great songs for yourself in the videos above and in my Bluegrass Guitar Essentials course. There are several songs, chords, and various techniques I cover in the course which are either Bluegrass Gospel oriented or can be applied to the playing style of Bluegrass Gospel.
The songs I cover in the course are what I feel are essential to helping you become a more professionally trained player as well as understand the core concepts behind Bluegrass Gospel and standard Bluegrass Guitar tunes.
The Ultimate Benefit
When you begin learning the various aspects of Bluegrass Gospel and incorporate their timeless techniques and Spirit-filled lyrics into your playing, you’ll begin to realize that there’s more to playing Bluegrass guitar than just learning the old standard fiddle tunes many people know and love by such legendary Bluegrass musicians and songwriters as Bill Monroe, Doc Watson, Flatt & Scruggs, The Stanley Bros., and many more.
Why do you think all these Bluegrass legends incorporated so many Bluegrass Gospel tunes in their set lists? Because there’s something in those songs that
speak to resonates in every one of us—and we’re all the best versions of ourselves because of it!
So please watch the videos above and be sure to leave your comments below for others to read and benefit from. Also, please take a moment and share this article on your favorite social network (share buttons below). It’s nearly impossible for me to reach everyone with these invaluable resources without your help.
Until next time,
Best Wishes and Keep Practicing,