The Roots of Fingerstyle Blues

Live Guitar Course: Learn Piedmont, Ragtime and country folk blues stylings.

In this companion course to the “Introduction to Fingerstyle Blues” we will delve back even further and take a look at some of the styles that influenced so many forms of American guitar music and beyond. This class will breakdown elements of Piedmont, Ragtime and country folk blues stylings and show you both how to play this unique style and to create your own songs. This standalone class can be taken either before or after “Introduction to Fingerstyle Blues.” For this course you will need a basic knowledge of open chords and the ability to transition between them.

The Roots of Fingerstyle Blues

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Course available for instant access with guided practice, tabs, and JamTracks where needed.

  • Learn Blues History
  • Classic Blues Songs Explained
  • Improve Your Fingerstyle
  • Piedmont, Ragtime and Country Blues
  • Get Live Answers and Feedback
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The Roots of Fingerstyle Blues Guitar Course

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We have upgraded, revamped, and organized in-studio, live weekly workshops broadcasted in 1080p. These focused, task-based workshops include full tablature, interactivity with the instruction, and even homework each week.

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Full Course Schedule

And of course, we keep everything, so if you miss a week you can always watch our archive of live courses. Tabs, backing tracks, and a full course PDF are provided for students, along with homework for each week! Interact with other students along with the teacher and get the instruction you need to advance your playing.

Date Topic

Week 1

10/15/2018 at 8pm

Laying the Groundwork

The first week of this course sets the stage for the weeks that follow. We begin by taking the old-time melody “When The Saints Go Marching In” and add in a basic alternate bass pattern. We will then offset several notes of our melody to create a syncopated line against a solid rhythmic groove.

Week 2

10/22/2018 at 8pm

Before the Blues

In week two we are going to take a look at some of the folk music from Appalachia that became a fundamental building block to this unique blending (amalgamation) of styles. We will learn to play the traditional song “John Henry” in the key of G with a basic fingerpicking pattern.

Week 3

10/29/2018 at 8pm

The American Folksong

Our lesson this week will build on the topics covered in the first two weeks. We will learn the popular old-time folk song “Frankie and Johnny” in the key of G.

Week 4

11/05/2018 at 8pm

The Railroad Song

The railroad played a major role in American folk music as both a backdrop in song and in its ability to merge culture and style. This week we will learn the classic song “Casey Jones.”

Week 5

11/12/2018 at 8pm


This week we are going to learn to play a sixteen-bar ragtime progression complete with blues style turnarounds and jaunty ragged rhythms. Our exercise this week is called “Ragtime in G.”

Week 6

11/19/2018 at 8pm

The Appalachian Folk Song

Week six features a song of unknown origin, “St. James Infirmary.” Such a sad song, yet so much fun to play!

Week 7

11/26/2018 at 8pm

Old Timey

In this week we’re going to move over to the key of C and learn the traditional folk song “Careless Love.”

Week 8

12/03/2018 at 8pm

Ragtime Blues

This week’s lesson is in the style of Blind Blake and includes an exercise based on a popular ragtime blues chord progression. This chord progression (I-VI- II-V-I), as well as the use of secondary dominants will be discussed this week.

Week 9

12/10/2018 at 8pm

Country Blues

In week nine we’re going to take a look at “Creole Belles.” Originally written for ragtime piano, and its influence on the Piedmont guitar styles still yet to follow.

Week 10

12/17/2018 at 8pm

The Wrap

This week concludes our workshop on “The Roots of Fingerstyle Blues.” We finish up with the traditional prison song “Midnight Special” in the key of E.

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