BLUEGRASS MANDOLIN FINGERBOARD METHOD with Sharon Gilchrist

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About This Course

Learn to play solos to any bluegrass song in any key with Sharon's method for learning the fingerboard, based on arpeggios, chop-chord shapes, and double stops.

SHARON GILCHRIST

Sharon Gilchrist has long made her home in the American acoustic music scene. Whether she’s playing mandolin, thumpin’ the upright bass, singing a traditional ballad, or performing one of her original pieces, her music is steeped in traditional Appalachian sounds, delivered with a distinct spacious, graceful, and fiery style all her own.

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Sharon has performed with Darol Anger, Peter Rowan and Tony Rice Quartet, Uncle Earl, Laurie Lewis and the Right Hands, the Kathy Kallick Band, Bill Evans, and many others. Her playing can be heard on two film shorts that feature her original music: Milagros and La Sevillana as well as Quartet, the Rounder Records release by the Peter Rowan and Tony Rice Quartet. Her latest project is a trio with Peghead Nation instructor and co-founder Scott Nygaard and mandolin master John Reischman. Their first album, The Harmonic Tone Revealers, will be released in September 2016.

Sharon is also a respected mandolin teacher, with numerous private and Skype students. She served as mandolin instructor at the Santa Fe University of Art and Design from 2004 to 2012 and has taught at music camps throughout the US. She earned a bachelor’s degree in mandolin performance from Belmont University in Nashville, Tennessee.

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Watch the video above to get a taste of what you’ll learn in Sharon Gilchrist’s Bluegrass Mandolin Fingerboard Method.

Sample Bluegrass Mandolin Fingerboard Method Lesson

I’ll Fly Away, Part 2: Harmonizing the Melody with Double Stops

In this video, Sharon shows you how to harmonize the melody of “I’ll Fly Away” with double stops. With Notation/Tab

Peghead Play-Along Tracks

Peghead Nation is creating a library of accompaniment videos (and downloadable MP3s) for songs and tunes that are taught on the site, classics that you'll find at many jams and picking parties. As a subscriber, you have access to this library and can use the tracks to practice playing tunes and songs at a slow or medium tempo with guitar accompaniment. New songs will be added regularly. 

Bluegrass Mandolin Fingerboard Method Lessons

A subscription to Bluegrass Mandolin Fingerboard Method includes:

  • An easy to learn method for learning the fingerboard so you can play in any key
  • Melody-based solos for popular bluegrass songs
  • New lessons added every month
  • Extensive right- and left-hand technique lessons
  • Notation and tab provided for all lessons
  • High-quality video with multiple camera angles so you can see close-ups of both hands in action
  • Play-Along videos so you can practice what you’ve learned
  • Downloadable audio MP3s of each tune

Get started now! Use promo code “SharonLand” at checkout and get your first month free or $20 off an annual subscription. Subscribe to Intermediate Bluegrass Mandolin today for access to all of these bluegrass mandolin lessons.

INTRO TO THE BLUEGRASS MANDOLIN FINGERBOARD METHOD

  • Intro to the Bluegrass Mandolin Fingerboard Method, Part 1: The L Shape Sharon talks about the basic concept of her Bluegrass Mandolin Fingerboard Method, which teaches intermediate bluegrass mandolin players how to walk into jam sessions and play solos to any bluegrass song in any key. The method uses shapes and patterns that you may already be familiar with, but Sharon shows you how to use those patterns (chords, scales, and double stops) in different places on the neck and construct melody-based solos from them. She starts by explaining “the L shape,” a concept Sharon got from mandolinist John Moore that gives visual representation to the roots of the I, IV, and V chords on the fingerboard.
  • Intro to the Bluegrass Mandolin Fingerboard Method, Part 2: Arpeggios In this lesson, Sharon shows you how to use the L shape to easily find arpeggios for the I, IV, and V chords in the key of D: D, G, A. She gives you a couple of exercises to help you practice moving between the arpeggios of the D, G, A chords.
  • Intro to the Bluegrass Mandolin Fingerboard Method, Part 3: Double Stops Once you know the arpeggios based on the L shape, you can easily find double stops to harmonize the melodies of the songs you’re playing. Sharon shows you two handy double stops in the L shape for D, G, and A, and gives you a couple exercises using them.
  • Intro to the Bluegrass Mandolin Fingerboard Method, Part 4: Simple I–IV–V Solo In this video, Sharon gives you a simple solo to play using the L-shape double stops, arpeggios, and scales you’ve learned for D, G, and A.

I’LL FLY AWAY

  • I’ll Fly Away, Part 1: Basic Melody and Chords After learning the basics of playing arpeggios, scales and double stops using the L shape, it’s time to put the concept to use on some songs. In this lesson you’ll learn to play a solo on the bluegrass/folk/gospel standard “I’ll Fly Away” in the key of D. Since it’s in D, you already know the positions you’ll use for the solo, but Sharon starts by reviewing the basics of what you learned in the Intro to the Bluegrass Mandolin Fingerboard Method. Then she gives you advice on finding the melody of the song you want to build a solo for, and shows you the basic melody and chords of the verse and chorus of “I’ll Fly Away.”
  • I’ll Fly Away, Part 2: Harmonizing the Melody with Double Stops In this video, Sharon shows you how to harmonize the melody of “I’ll Fly Away” with double stops, using the “short” and “long” double stops you’ve already learned. She walks you through the verse and chorus showing you which double stops to use and giving advice on making the melody stand out. She also shows you a couple of simple “kickoffs,” one for the verse and one for the chorus. 
  • I’ll Fly Away, Part 3: Play-Along Track Use this video to play the harmonized melody of “I’ll Fly Away” with Sharon and guitarist Scott Nygaard.

NINE POUND HAMMER

  • Nine Pound Hammer, Part 1: Basic Melody and Chords The song “Nine Pound Hammer” is one of the most popular bluegrass jam songs, and is played in a few different keys. The version you’ll learn here is in the key of D, so Sharon starts by reminding you of the L shapes, arpeggio patterns, and double stops in the key of D. Then she walks you through the melody and chords of the verse and chorus of “Nine Pound Hammer.”
  • Nine Pound Hammer, Part 2: Melody and Double Stops Sharon shows you how to add double stops to the basic melody of “Nine Pound Hammer.” She also shows you a typical Bill Monroe ending lick and gives you advice on practicing the solo in different keys.
  • Nine Pound Hammer, Part 3: Play-Along Track Use this video to play the harmonized melody of “Nine Pound Hammer” with Sharon and guitarist Scott Nygaard. 

I’M ON MY WAY BACK TO THE OLD HOME

  • I’m on My Way Back to the Old Home, Part 1: Melody “I’m on My Way Back to the Old Home” is a bluegrass standard, written by Bill Monroe. You’ll learn the melody and a basic double-stop solo in the key of D. Before showing you the melody, Sharon reminds you of the “L shape” in the key of D and arpeggios for D, G, and A. Then she shows you the chords and melody to the verse of “I’m on My Way Back to the Old Home.”
  • I’m on My Way Back to the Old Home, Part 2: Double-Stop Solo Sharon shows you how to create a simple solo to “I’m on My Way Back to the Old Home” with a kickoff and double stops.
  • I’m on My Way Back to the Old Home, Part 3: Double-Stop Practice Sharon shows you how to practice double-stops using the chord progression to “I’m on My Way Back to the Old Home,” a common progression sometimes called Bluegrass Chord Progression #1.
  • I’m on My Way Back to the Old Home, Part 4: Play-Along Track Use this video to play the double-stop solo of “I’m on My Way Back to the Old Home” with Sharon and guitarist Scott Nygaard.


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