Chris Eldridge

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Old Grimes


A Section Melody

Hello!

This week we’re carrying on with Old Grimes and getting into some single note playing. I’ll show you how I play the melody on the A part. We’ll review some of the basic techniques that can be used for learning a tune like this: identifying the melody using scale degrees, and using pick direction to inform your knowledge of a rhythmic phrase.

If this lesson is easy for you then you might try playing the melody while using your imagination to superimpose the shapes of the chords on the fingerboard at the same time. Notice how the physical shapes and notes of the melody interact with the chord shapes.

Cheers!

Chris

 

 

 

Topics and/or subjects covered in this lesson:
standards

Print Print Chords & Tab

Loop 0:00 Run-Through of Old Grimes Melody/p>

 

Download the Sheet Music PDF

  

Loop 0:53 Introduction to Old Grimes

Loop 1:55 Breakdown of Melody

Loop 15:23 Closing Thoughts and Outro

 

 

 

 

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Chris Blankner
Chris Blankner Feb 17, 2019

Hi Chris,

How do you do the slide from the 2 to 5th fret?  Do you do a picked 2nd fret then slide and pick the 5th again, or does the slide to the 5th and stop do the trick?  I was hoping you'd include that in the lesson, so hopefully i'm asking the question right.

Chris Eldridge
Chris Eldridge Mar 04, 2019

Hi Chris,

Yes, I usually restrike the D note on the downbeat after the slide. But you don't have to. You could also let the note from the slide hang on for a little longer for a different sound. Here is a video showing the difference in sound: 

Denny Fried
Denny Fried May 10, 2018

Hi Chris,

First I just want to thank you for sharing your musical heart with us here. Sounds corny, I know, but I can't think of a more honest way of putting it.

I don't have the up-and-down pick speed to keep pace with some of these fiddle tunes. But I can get a reasonable facsimile by "cheating" with hammer-ons and pull-offs. But I always feel kind of guilty doing this, thinking that I'm taking the easy way out instead of putting in whatever time would be necessary to develop the necessary speed (if that were even possible at this point in life). What's your opinion on this? I can't tell from your videos if you ever do this sort ot thing, and of course you'd never need to.

Thanks.

 

 

Chris Eldridge
Chris Eldridge May 11, 2018

Hi Denny, and thanks for the kind words!

Not only can you use slurs like hammer-ons, pull-offs, and slides, but it is encouraged! A well placed slur has the dual advantage of 1) giving your right hand a break and 2) providing accents for the music. If you play nothing but a steady stream of up/down picked 16th notes, the sound can get a little monotonous or monochromatic. By incorporating a slur in a thoughtful place you can actually created a sense of microdynamics in your playing, which can just make the music sound more interesting or exciting. I do it all the time, and so does every other flatpicker. So you’re in good company!

Cheers,

Chris

Gregory Kelly
Gregory Kelly Nov 04, 2017

Hey Chris-

When you're playing a fiddle tune like this, how are you thinking about the overtones on your guitar? I feel like I'm not hearing many in your examples of the A and B sections (on my computer speakers), but it doesn't appear to me that your muting your strings in any way. I can only assume your D28 is throwing out even more overtones than my OM2HAT

I keep going back and forth between letting them ring and muting them out. It feels like each approach has its place, but I feel like I need to commit to an approach before I start a section otherwise I add a certain amount of hesitation in my playing. I'm curious as to how you think about this generally?

Thanks

 

Chris Eldridge
Chris Eldridge Nov 05, 2017

Hi Gregory,

Just to clarify, when you’re asking about overtones are you talking about open strings ringing with harmonics?

Cheers!

Chris

Gregory Kelly
Gregory Kelly Nov 05, 2017

Yes exactly. 

Chris Eldridge
Chris Eldridge Nov 05, 2017

Ok, thanks for that! To be honest, it’s not something that I worry about too much. I think that the notes that you are striking directly with the flatpick are loud enough that they drown out any overtones that may be happening sympathetically on open strings. As I play the melody I do definitely dampen the open strings at times. The first note of the song at the downbeat (after the pickup notes) is a perfect example: I actually play that D twice in a row but I dampen the first one quickly with my left hand so that they both have more of a rhythmic impact. 

One spot where sympathetic string vibrations and overtones can spring up is between the nut and the tuning posts. You might check down there to see if they are ringing and causing distraction. Sometimes when I’m in the recording studio I’ll gently weave a tiny piece of cloth or leather between the strings below the nut to quiet them.

James Macklin
James Macklin Apr 09, 2017

Just found a nice version of this song played by Courtney Hartman (also one of my favorite guitar players). Nice and tasteful! She sneaks in a little walkup in the bass line during the A part. You have to skip past Dana Bourgois talking about his new line of guitars to hear it.

BTW Chris I am working on this tune (your version) and will post a vid soon. The A part came pretty quickly so I'm shedding the B part. 

 

Chris Eldridge
Chris Eldridge Apr 09, 2017

I love Courtney! She's such a great guitar player (and one of the coolest people there is). Thanks for sharing - I'd never heard her play this.

Kip Marchetti
Kip Marchetti Apr 04, 2017

I think near the end I look over at my right arm and think dang it ... you're supposed to be doing more of the work.

All wrist ... working on it ... and not quite up to tempo.

 

Chris Eldridge
Chris Eldridge Apr 05, 2017

Kip, you're on a great track here. I agree that you could get a bit more movement in your whole arm - not with the point being that your arm moves more, but rather that there is no single spot in your arm where you are holding tension. By keeping your arm so still you are holding tension in it. That said, the timing sounds solid and it sounds like music. But there is room for to get a bit more "flow" in your performance feel. 

one other thing, when you slide up to those unison D notes on the 5th feet of the A string and the open D string it should feel open and like the guitar gets bigger for a second (because you are playing 2 of the same note). As it is the slide sounds kind of sharp and short, but it should feel expansive and liquid. 

Cheers,

Chris

Kip Marchetti
Kip Marchetti Mar 31, 2017

Very cool ... I didn't have it quite right from watching you pick the melody in your introductory lesson. Close but not quite right.  What really jumps out at me with this tune, listening to the new record and watching you all play it live ...  is the tone. I just really dig the tone, maybe it's the combination of the melody, cool chords, picking patterns, and how you play your guitar but I like it more than a little.  Oh well ... back to work ... er-a ... play.

 
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