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Dobro Lessons: Swing Tunes and using The 6th Note

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Here in this lesson,
we're gonna get into some discussion and
examples on playing swing-type tunes or
swing music on the Dobro.
The Dobro lends itself real nice to that
kinda sound.
And so what I'm gonna do is talk a little
bit about that and
show you a few ways that you can get a
pretty cool,
kind of swingy almost lap steel or petal
steel kinda sound.
So you know, what I'm talking about is
this type of thing.
So a lot of this is gonna be combining
some of that chicken picking technique
that we discussed earlier with a few other
chordal sounds.
So a lot of the swing-type playing you can
use chords in,
and sort of a key part of that is using
the sixth, the major sixth in a key.
So that's sort of a traditional swing
If we're in the key of G, the sixth of G
is an E.
So a real easy way to get that [SOUND] is
right here
on the high two strings, fifth fret.
So you can play this E and this G
You can also do it up on the 17th fret.
It has almost a, more of a, kind of
classic, country swing sound.
So using that sixth note is gonna really
sort of give a swing song its flair.
And that's just sort of one technique you
can use.
In the key of D, if we go to D for
a minute,
you've got actually a really great sixth
chord right here.
So any swing song that's gonna be in the
key of D is gonna be great,
a song maybe like Panhandle Rag.
So the way you get that sixth chord is you
fret the the first,
the lowest four strings, and you leave the
top two open.
So you've got, a B note here,
which is the sixth in D.
So both D and G are great tunes to sort of
experiment with that swing sound.
But let's go back to the key of G.
not only can you play the sixth here with
the G note, but
you can also play that sixth note, kinda
focus on it on its own.
So the sixth is E, 14th fret or
second fret of the high string.
So you kinda gotta few different place
you can play that E note in the key of G
So what we're gonna do now is we're gonna
demonstrate the song Cindy.
And, it's sort of a classic Texas swing
kinda song.
And, you'll hear it uses that sixth quite
a bit in the melody.
So what I encourage you to do, is [NOISE]
play the melody and
you can hear that sixth note.
And then what I'm going to do is, on this
I'm actually gonna play the chords on the
second time through so
you can hear how you might do some sort of
swing sounding backup.
So I'll play the melody the first time
through in the backing track.
And then the second time I'm going to comp
some, some backup, so
you can hear how I might do that.
So let's get the the backing track
rolling, and I'll show you what I mean.
[SOUND] One and two and one, two, three.
So you can hear in the first time through,
I played the Cindy melody, and
then the second time through, I just did a
little bit of comping,
using that basic sixth chord which is
using the G and the E together.
So over the G chord I play the
And then over the C chord I kinda use the
same effect.
So in C
you've got a, a, this chord and
then you've got
that right there, which is a C and
an A, which is the sixth and C.
So what you do basically to get an easy
sixth chord is you go up to your
higher root note in a chord.
If you're on the key of the C in the
seventh fret, you go up to the tenth fret
and then you've got those two right there
next to each other.
So that's sort of how I did that comping.
Now let's go ahead and
play this at the faster tempo, and I'll do
a similar type of thing.
I'll play the melody and then I'll do some
chord comping.
You can see what that sounds like at a
faster tempo.
[SOUND] One and two and a one, two, three.
All right, so that's Cindy at the faster
tempo, and I played the melody and
just did some chord comping.
Let me give you a little bit more insight
to what I was doing and
that chord comping.
So I'm using that sixth note
on the different chords.
What I was also doing though, is using a
flat seven chord to guide us,
from the one chord to the four chord.
So when we're in G, I'm playing the six.
Just doing a little bit of comping like
And then, when it's getting ready to
switch to the C chord,
[SOUND] I use this seventh chord right
here, which is the 15th fret.
[SOUND] Which is gonna lead us to the C
So not only was I able to use the six
chord, [SOUND] but
I was able to use the G7 chord [SOUND] to
then lead us to the four chord.
So I did some of that.
One other thing you can do is,
then once I was on the four chord,
I used not only the C chord and a C6,
but I also used a C7
which would be up on the eighth fret.
and then to the G.
So there's a few different chords you can
use to lead you as the,
changes go along, so that'll hopefully
give you some
idea as to how to play a nice swing melody
and also how to
do some cool swing backup chording