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Dobro Lessons: Efficiency of Motion

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This page contains a transcription of a video lesson from Dobro & Lap Steel with Andy Hall. This is only a preview of what you get when you take Dobro Lessons at ArtistWorks. The transcription is only one of the valuable tools we provide our online members. Sign up today for unlimited access to all lessons, plus submit videos to your teacher for personal feedback on your playing.

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[MUSIC]
Hey, guys.
We're going to dig into just a little bit
more of a right and
left hand technique to get us ready to
play some, some more fun music.
So, what I'd like to talk about here is
what I like to call a fish and
sea of motion.
And what this is is basically, it's just
technique stuff.
When you're playing and, you know,
Dobro technique can be a little bit
challenging at first.
So one thing that were gonna talk about it
here is ways to
keep your playing efficient and not use
too much movement and
what this will do is make everything a lot
more accurate and a lot more easy for you.
First, were going to talk about the right
hand.
[SOUND] Now, I know we talked some about
this in earlier curriculum,
but what we're gonna do here is when we
have our right-hand set,
you want it to be sort of like, I like to
say, knuckle up.
If you have this, this knuckle should be
sort of the apex of your hand.
And that, that's gonna happen if you have
your hand curled up.
You don't want it to be all the way like a
fist, but
you want it to have a good curl to it.
[MUSIC]
What this does is instead of plucking
down at the strings or even across,
you're more, you're almost plucking up a
little bit.
[SOUND] If you look at the way these picks
strike the strings,
[SOUND] its sort of curling in and
plucking up towards you.
[SOUND] And that's a stronger attack than
you say, if you had your hands more open.
[MUSIC]
It's also, you don't,
[SOUND] you don't have to move as much to
strike a string.
So,
[MUSIC]
a lot of times what I'll do
is just do some, some basic roll exercises
to make
sure I've got my right hand in a
comfortable curled under position.
[MUSIC]
Should have a nice, just give a nice pop.
[MUSIC]
And you can see there's not a lot of
movement going on here, but there's quite
a bit of sound coming out.
[MUSIC]
And now it's got quite a bit of volume,
but I'm really not plucking it that hard.
It's just, it's easier because my hand is
curled under.
So for the right-hand [SOUND] as I say,
you want it curled under [SOUND] a fair
amount.
[MUSIC]
And you don't wanna,
you don't want your hand, [SOUND] your
fingers whacking at the strings, you'll,
you know, it may take a little bit a
getting used to.
But once you've got this, [SOUND] it's
just so comfortable.
You just lay your hand down there [SOUND]
and you're ready to go.
[MUSIC]
You don't have to move it a whole lot.
So that's sort of right hand efficiency of
motion.
The same theory applies to the left-hand.
So,
[MUSIC]
when I'm playing and
moving the bar around.
[MUSIC]
If I wanna lift the bar up off of
a string.
[SOUND] I don't have to lift it very high,
I don't wanna be [SOUND] lifting it up
that high.
[SOUND] I wanna keep it pretty close to
the strings.
[MUSIC]
So when I lift the bar I just,
I don't lift it very high, you know,
if I'm doing something like a hammer on or
a pull off.
[MUSIC]
I keep that left-hand,
you know, from going too high.
[SOUND] And what you'll notice is most
great Dobro players that you'll see,
you may enjoy, you hear a lot of sound
coming out of them.
They, they may be playing really fast but
you're not gonna see all that much
movement.
And [SOUND] it's not gonna, it may sound
amazing and
crazy, but it may not look that way.
You can get a lot of sound out, keeping
your hands pretty relaxed and,
and fairly still.
[MUSIC]
So the idea is to have an exciting sound
or maybe even a beautiful sound coming out
of the Dobro.
And, but maintaining relaxed posture and
efficiency of motion with both hands.
[MUSIC]