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Michael Johnson >> Folk Guitar Legends >>
Lesson Subject: Folk Guitar Legends II
What you learn: Emmylou Harris Style
Michael: Michael Johnson

Michael: Hello class, our lesson covers more on Folk Guitar Legends II, this lesson featuring the style of Emmylou Harris. Emmylou's style is more country - folk, she has inspired many modern day musicians including the likes of Dave Matthews. She basically takes the country sound and expands it into a very unique folk-country sound. Listen to the lesson sample of what you will learn in this lesson:

Lesson Sample

Michael: Let's get started, our first part will start in a G progression:



Part 1

Part 1 - Picking

Michael: In this section notice you start with a typical country progression in G, C, G..... but then you add chords like the Em to alter the progression. Notice the hammer-on that leads you into the Cadd9. The Cadd9 verses the C major makes it easier to play between the G and Cadd9 chords. These chards are used often in bluegrass as well.

Michael: Here's the jam track:

Looping Jam Track 1

Michael: In this section you the solo shifts with the chords of the progression as well. You can really notice the change when the progression shifts to Am, Bm and C. Our next section shifts to Em, which is relative to the key of G, here's the chord progression:



Part 2

Part 2 - Picking

Michael: After you play the Em chord and then move to Cadd9, notice the hammer-on riff that ties the chords together. Also you can see how the fingering of the G and Cadd9 are closely related, making the switching of the chords very easy. You end the phrase with Am, Bm and C again. Here's the jam track:

Looping Jam Track 2

Michael: Now you can solo over the chord changes as well, you do this by playing the notes related to each chord on the higher strings. Here's the first part of the solo:



Part 1 - Solo 1

Michael: Notice the chord structure in the tab. For the G you play double notes on the 3rd fret, then shift to open related notes for the Em, then notes that are related to D. Try playing these licks over the looping jam track and see if you can follow the chord changes. These are basic licks, but can be a little tricky to follow the chords. Let's try the solo for the 2nd half of the progression:



Part 1 - Solo 2

Michael: Let's try something that is different. In this section we move to E.



Part 3

Part 3 - Picking

Michael: Now this section might be a challenge for many of you. Notice the fingering to hold down the first barre chord. Notice how the first finger will also move from the 4th string and up to the 5th string. This type of altering of the bass notes are very common in country. The only problem here is that you are using barre chords instead of open chords, which are very common in country. Notice the country type riff towards the end that is based on the A chord.

Michael: Here's the jam track.

Looping Jam Track 3

Michael: Our next riff will sound more folk than country. This section starts with the key of A.



Part 4

Part 4 - Picking

Michael: Notice the beat has more of a folk rock sound. A style she used on the Red Dirt Girl CD. Here's the jam track.

Looping Jam Track 4

Michael: Notice this track has more of the rock groove to it. In our next section we'll jump back into a country sounding progression using G again.



Part 5

Part 5 - Picking

Michael: Notice you use more riffs in between each chord. The first riff using a hammer-on type licks, the second transition is a chromatic run on the 6th string. Here's the last jam track for this section:

Looping Jam Track 5

Michael: Well that's it for the lesson on Emmylou Harris's style. Bye!

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