This is a public version of the members-only Dobro & Lap Steel with Andy Hall, at ArtistWorks. Functionality is limited, but CLICK HERE for full access if you’re ready to take your playing to the next level.

These lessons are available only to members of Dobro & Lap Steel with Andy Hall.
Join Now

Basic Dobro
Intermediate Dobro
Advanced Dobro
Lap Steel
30 Day Challenge
«Prev of Next»

Dobro Lessons: Old School Dobro

Lesson Video Exchanges () submit video Submit a Video Lesson Study Materials () This lesson calls for a video submission
Study Materials Quizzes
information below Close
information below
Lesson Specific Downloads
Play Along Tracks
Backing Tracks +
Written Materials +

+Basic Dobro

+Intermediate Dobro

+Advanced Dobro

+Lap Steel

Additional Materials +
resource information below Close
Collaborations for
resource information below Close
Submit a video for   

This video lesson is available only to members of
Dobro & Lap Steel with Andy Hall.

Join Now

information below Close
Course Description

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.

CLICK HERE for full access.
All right,
now we're gonna cover something that I'm
quite fond of,
and is sort of the foundation of all
modern Bluegrass Dobro playing,
which is what I like to call old school
So and a lot of this is sort of based off
of the Uncle Josh style Dobro,
and Bashful Brother Oswald.
So we're gonna use some of those slants in
this section that we've learned.
And I'm gonna give you a little bit of
some Uncle Josh vocabulary.
And eventually in a way the lessons gonna
lead us to a really cool tune.
So the first thing that I'd like to cover
is related to these slants, and
it's a classic sound, and it's basically,
you can call it making the Dobro cry.
And so this is used probably in real
specific situations
when you have the call for an old school
sort of Dobro sound.
So, what I'm talking about when I say
making the Dobro cry is this type
of thing.
So, you can tell that sound really sort of
takes you back to to a,
a time long ago, but [SOUND] but I've
actually used this in recording sessions,
various things, when people want a
specific sound it can be really useful.
So, basically all you're doing is,
you're gonna take some of the slants that
we've learned.
And you're just gonna [SOUND] do sort of a
tremolo back and
forth between two strings.
[SOUND] And you slowly just sort
of slide from one slant to the next.
And you might even
use a little vibrato on the left hand.
So you can just try a little bit of that.
Something like that right there might be
how Bashful Brother Oswald would have,
would have ended a song.
So [SOUND] just for example, if we go to
the 17th fret way up here on this C chord.
Straight across.
[SOUND] And slowly go down to the 14th and
13th frets in a forward slant.
[SOUND] So that's something you don't have
to spend a ton of time on,
but it's kind of a nice trick to add to
your overall repertoire.
And I think there's something really nice
in having some understanding of
the traditional Dobro styles.
You may not use that exact lick, but
having familiarity with it and being able
to see how the sound is evolved, I think
can really help your playing.
Another really sort of integral sound is
the yodel lick.
And it's sort of similar to that making
the Dobro cry, but
this actually has a lot more practical
value in your playing.
So, the yodel lick is
based off of a, a vocal yodel.
And if you've ever listened to Jimmy
Roger's music, you hear a lot of that.
A lot of his songs are blue yodel number
nine or various ones like that.
So, you wanna learn this b, real basic
yodel lick.
It's not too hard.
I'll show it to you on the 12th fret in G.
So go to the 12th fret right there in G,
and basically it's just this.
There's sort of very, different variations
the, fourth and
second string on the 12th fret
maybe with a slide.
And then chromatically down on the fourth
to the tenth fret, and then you shift down
to the fifth and third strings and come up
So you probably recognize that sound, you
can do that on any major chord if we
were in D on the seventh fret you could do
the same thing.
Sort of a classic sound.
And what you can do is you can use these
licks and
sort of make your own variations.
So you can sort of develop
some of these exercises for
the yodel lick.
Now, another thing that I'll just go over
quickly is a few sort of
classic Uncle Josh licks, or a little bit
of Uncle Josh vocabulary.
Now I've mentioned him before, I recommend
you get some of his Dobro work.
He's done a lot of cool albums.
And there's with flattened Scruggs mainly.
But he's done actually quite a few solo
So you should really check out his
You'd be amazed at how much you hear in
modern Dobro playing that
is based off of his playing that he was
doing, you know, 50 years ago.
So, I'll just go through some of these
exercises that I've written out that
sort of will give you a little bit of that
Here's one.
A lot of these are based off of banjo
licks, really.
So check it out, I'll play it one more
That could be an ending type of lick.
Here's another one that's actually quite
Once again.
And that in, that lick in particular has
been sort of the foundation for
a more modern type of hammer on thing that
I do quite often.
Something like this.
But all that is based off of this sort of
classic Uncle Josh
thing where you start on the ninth fret
and then play the open D open B open D.
And then fifth fret
With a little ending.
So a lot of times, like I was saying with
the yodel lick,
these, these licks on their own, maybe
it's not something you would use.
But if you get them under your belt,
they can sort of lead you to other more
modern sounds.
You can use them as a jumping off point to
create your own kind of licks, so.
Another example might be
and then one classic one is this sort of,
they call it the rippitdy-do lick, so it's
like this.
And you do, it's kind of like a rake
a rake and a mute
And that one's on the 12th fret, ends on
the 12th fret but it starts on the 14th,
a big slide up to the 14th.
You've probably heard that sound.
Here's another one
And then maybe a yodel.
I'm gonna play a little piece here that's
I'm gonna improvise but it's gonna use
some of this vocabulary, and
just so you can see how these types of
things might sound in context.
So that's just an overview of some of the
sounds of old school Dobro.
Now there's a lot more to go that you can
through listening to Bashful Brother
Oswald Josh Graves and others.
And I highly recommend you check out some
of that traditional Dobro
stuff as it is the foundation for really
all modern Bluegrass Dobro.