Slide Rhythm Guitar In Drop D

Here is a neat slide guitar rhythm part, played in dropped D. It incorporates a bunch of techniques: slide, normal playing, muting.

Here is a neat slide guitar rhythm part, played in dropped D. It incorporates a bunch of techniques I've been demonstrating in these lessons: slide, normal playing, muting. It's in the key of D, a I-IV-V progression, and in this case, each of the those chords is allowed to visit its own IV chord momentarily. I know that sounds confusing, so let me try and explain: the three chords used are D, G and A. These are the three primary chords of the key of D, the I-IV-V chords of D. So while I'm playing the D chord, there are some quick G chords thrown in there. G is the IV chord of D. While I'm playing the G chord, I play the same kind of figure centered around G now, so for simplicity sake, let's consider that G chord as a I chord. Its IV chord is C. So the figure becomes G to C; the same applies to the A chord: the figure goes to a IV chord of A, which is D. In this way, the I-IV chord figure becomes a repeating theme, built on the three chords as if each were a I chord. I know, it's still confusing, but it's difficult to explain in any other way. This bluesy kind of music does not follow the usual rules of 'pure' music. Even though it's in the key of D, you can almost think of it as changing key with each chord change, so each becomes a I chord for its duration. The unadorned chord progression, without the little IV chords, is:
| D / / / | D / / / | D / / / | A / D / | D / / / | D / / / | D / / / | A / D / | 

| G / / / | A / / / | G / / / | A / / / | D / / / | D / / / | D / / / | A / D / |
"NOTE: Tune the bass string (low E) of your guitar down one step to D."
The movie will show you the basic the basic positions I use and how I move from one to the other; the tablature will show you exactly what I play. The piece is mostly 'chordlets', which is a term I coined in the last lesson, meaning 'small chords'. As always, I use the slide on any bits and pieces that line up. So the first D is a line-up on the 7th fret (part of the A form barre D chord); the little G chord is the open strings of the open G chord; the next D is a fingered double stop, the 3 and 5 of an open D chord. Then back to the open strings and then back to the slide chord. It's a series of moves that requires quite a lot of concentration to begin with, but quickly settles into a muscle memory action. It's fun to do. At the end of bar 9, I anticipate the G chord, which I play as a slide power chord on the bass strings at the 5th fret. Then follows the quick C chord, which is also at the fifth fret; all that happens is that I play the 2-3-4 string set to grab the C triad. This is where the right hand muting must come into play. I've said it often, the main trick to playing slide, especially in standard or dropped D, is to mute out unwanted strings. The best way to do that is with your right hand finger tips. The A chord section, which is just one bar long, is an echo of the G bit, in that the chord does the little jump up to its IV chord (D), but I finger it slightly differently. I play the first A as a fretted chord. Again, the chordlets are the units I use to create the lines. This is a fun piece to play, once you get the flow of it happening. It needs to be attacked element by element, bar by bar, until it all becomes one long movement. There are a million variations on the theme, but you need to get at least one down pat before you can go exploring for others. As the previous 'Slide Guitar In Drop D. Part 1 and Part 2' lessons demonstrate also, and contrary to popular belief, standard/dropped D tunings are a rich environment for slide. There are many, many ways to express a series of chords, and somehow the need for line-ups makes for an interesting end result when you've got that slide on your pinkie.
        D     G     D     G        D     G     D  G     D           G     D     G
 1   2                          3                          4
   |_   |__|  |__|  |__|  |__|     |__|  |__|  |__|     |_    |__|  |__|  |__|  |__|

    A  G      D
 5                           6                         7
    |__|  |___|  |__|  |__|    |__|  |__|  |__|  |__|     |__|  |__|  |__|     |_ 

                                                    G           C     G
 8                          9                          10
    |__|  |__|  |__|  |__|     |__|  |___|    |_ |__|     |__|  |__|  |__|  |__|

    A     D     A              G     C     D              A     D     A
 11                         12                         13
    |__|  |__|  |__|  |        |__|  |__|  |__|  |__|     |__|  |__|  |__|  |__|

 14                         15                         16
    |__|  |__|  |__|  |__|     |__|  |__|  |__|     |_    |__|  |__|  |__|  |__|

 17                      18              19
    |__|  |_  |   |              |           |      |      |

Files :

Canadian Kirk Lorange is the man Guitar Maestro Tommy Emmanuel calls "The best slide player on the Planet". Based in Australia since 1975, he has played on scores of album tracks (including Keith Urban's early albums), dozens of film scores and literally hundreds of TV and radio jingles. His speciality is slide guitar, played in standard and dropped D tunings. He is also the author of PlaneTalk - The Truly Totally Different Guitar Instruction Book and creator of the website Guitar For Beginners And Beyond. He is currently putting the finishing touches on his 'How to play Slide in standard and dropped D tunings DVD'. You can listen to Kirk's music at his Soundclick site.

Links :

- Kirk Lorange's Official Website
- Kirk Lorange's E-mail Address
- Kirk Lorange's Lessons

14 comments sorted by best / new / date

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    man its so awesome!! My pinkies not fat enough for the slide to fit on so i have my problems but i manage
    CapitaineGuitar wrote: My pinkies not fat enough for the slide to fit on so i have my problems but i manage
    you could put a strip of cork in the slide to make it fit better
    fingersofflame wrote: this may be a dumb question, but is this the last lesson from you mr. lorange? No, this isn't....
    Hope your bloody correct! i love these lessons, the videos are superb.
    fingersofflame wrote: this may be a dumb question, but is this the last lesson from you mr. lorange?
    No, this isn't....
    fingersofflame wrote: what kinda guitar are you using?
    E-mail him and ask....
    wow....i am left speechless...i have been following these lessons closely, and i must say that i am pretty has inspired me to learn how to play slide...i tried one time and it sounded absolutely horrible...anyway, 10 stars man!