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Dobro Lessons: Using a Capo

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All right.
Now we're gonna get into using a capo to
access other keys.
It's sort of a gear related thing and so,
I brought another little ditty that I told
you about earlier but I didn't show you.
No, this is not my medication.
This is actually a jar with some powdered
violin rosin in it.
What I've noticed when I first started
playing is my picks would slip around.
I'd trouble keeping them on.
I just wanna show you what I'll do.
As I told you before I put electrical tape
on my fingers.
This sort of protects the cuticles and
also it keeps the picks kind of in place,
but this really keeps the picks in place.
I just sorta dip my fingers in this
powdered rosin.
And what I'll do, is, I'll find a fiddle,
fiddle player buddy
who has an old violin rosin that he
doesn't use, or broke, or something.
Crush it up, put it in here.
So then, I've got this little bit of, of
fiddle rosin on my fingers,
and then I put my picks on, like this.
And so,
then, once they're on, they're set on
there and
they're not gonna move, so, it's just sort
of a trick I've learned over the years.
It's really helps me out, and I do it
actually every time I put my picks on,
so, it's a little bit of an extra step.
Certainly you don't have to do it, but for
me it seems to work.
Just thought I'd pass that along.
Now as far as using a capo wha,
we're gonna do is we're gonna play this
song banks of the Ohio.
An old bluegrass song, but we're gonna do
it in the key of A, and
so what we're gonna do is instead of
playing it out of open A,
we're just gonna just capo on the second
fret and
then play like we would be playing if we
were in g's using a lot of open strings.
So, what we're gonna do is we're gonna
take the capo, and
just place it right here over the second
And sometimes you gotta get your head
right over it and
look an make sure it's where it needs to
It should be right over the fret and you
want it to be even.
You don't want it to be crooked either
direction, just like your bar,
if you were to set your bar on the fret.
So get that make sure all the strings are,
are even and and
being clamped down, you can strum it one
Make sure it sounds correct.
And that seems like we're good, so I'm
gonna go ahead and play Banks of the Ohio.
Now you'll notice on the tablature it just
says, it basically,
is written as if it was in the key of G.
You can just treat it just like the key of
G, basically.
So but of course, we are in the key of A
and a capo too.
So let's give it a try, and we'll play
Banks of the Ohio at 75 beats a minute
here with a metronome and to demonstrate
the song and the use of a capo.
So here we go.
One, two, three.
that's a real basic version of banks of
the Ohio.
Sometimes what I'll do, when I'm playing a
song like that, and there's a lot of space
in-between the notes, I'll add maybe a
little roll or a few other notes in there.
I didn't do it that time,
because I just wanted to play what I had
written out on the music.
But an example of that I'll just show you,
you don't need to use your metronome for
this, might be something like this.
I might throw an extra little roll in
there or
something just to keep things moving
But, that's the basic idea of how you use
the capo.
Of course, I could move that capo up one
fret if I wanted to.
That'd be a B-flat and then still play the
tablature if it were the same.
Basically like it was out of G.
So, we can even try that.
We can move the capo up one.
And the reason we'd wanna do that, would
mainly be for a singer.
A lot of times if you play with a singer,
if you're playing with a female singer
they're gonna have a higher voice,
they may do a song in a different key than
you're used to doing it.
Male singer may be lower or whatever.
Somebody just may be used to singing a
song in a certain key, so if they say,
hey, let's do Banks of the Ohio, I like to
do it in B flat, well, there you go.
You, B flat is gonna be the third fret.
You put your capo there and you can play
it just the same.
Just like that.
So, the capo, affords you, a lot of
different variety, and,
it's gonna help you play in different
keys, using a lot of open strings.
Well we got the Capo on,
and let's try that Banks of the Ohio,
right there in the key of A, using the
Capo, and
we'll try it with a backing track at a
nice slow tempo.
Here we go.
>> One, two, three, four, one, two, three,
>> [MUSIC].
We've got two octaves there for
that melody.
Let's try it one more time, and we'll,
bump up the tempo just a little bit for
Banks of the Ohio there in the key of A.
>> One, two, three, four, one, two, three,
>> [MUSIC].