Country Picking with Alt Bass

In this lesson, Charlie introduces a Country rythm with Bluegrass ending using some basic chord changes.

The diagrams below show the position of the fingers on your left hand to play the basic chords used in this lesson.

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Hi there, today we are going to look at a pretty basic chord change: G, D, C chords, and we're going to use a thing called an alternate bass and we're going to go from one bass note to another bass note on the same chord. We are also going to play a little run which will lead us into the next chord in the progression. Finishing that off with a little classic Bluegrass ending.

The first chord we're going to play is our G chord, just the one I'm playing right now. If you are not sure of these chords you can look them up, or on our webpage, of course, we have the chord diagrams accompanying this video. Here's our G chord. The second chord we want is our C chord, and the third chord, our D chord.

The picking pattern with the right hand: basically what we're doing here is picking our G bass first, on our G chord. Strumming that chord predominantly the bottom four strings, then I got for my D bass. So the pattern for G chord is G bass strum, D bass, back to G bass. G bass, D bass, G bass.

Moving onto my C chord, the bass notes are going to be C, G (and I'll show that with the left hand in a second), C, G, back to C.

Ok, our C Chord. I need to move my third finger from my C bass up to the E string on the third fret for my G bass. So that we have, C, G, C.

And looking at our alternate bass for our D chord, we play our D bass, A bass, D bass

Ok, the next thing I have to do is to play our run which will take us from our G chord into our C chord. And the run is quite simply G, A, B and into our C chord. Notice that when we go into our C note, I aim to get my fingers in place for, not just the C note but the C chord, so I get the run sounding like this ...

Taking that from the G chord ...

And in the C position, I play my C bass note, slide up into C sharp which is on the fourth fret, onto an open D string and I'm ready to go the D chord.

Taking it back from the G ...

I'm now going to lead into my G chord again. Simply play my open E string, the sixth string, F sharp bringing me back into my G chord.

The whole thing played through looking at my left hand.

All right, guys, let's have a look at a little lick that I play at the end. A little bit of a bluegrass ending for you.

Ok the run consists of a G note on the bass, followed by an open A. We're now going to hammer onto the A sharp, and then hammer onto the B which is on the second fret of our A string. Followed by our open D string, hammering onto the E note, which is on the second fret of the D string. And then finally an open G string which is our third string. Finish it off with the chord.

And away we go.

Ok, the important thing with this is not to try and start off to fast. Spend a little bit of time working on your alternate bass on each chord, and put your chord progression together with your alternate bass. If you are not too flash on just playing the G, C and D chord, I suggest you just spend some time going through those changes first then add your alternate bass, and then add your runs. At the end, of course we got our bluegrass lick, so you can practice that separately, finally put the whole thing together.

Good luck with it. I know you'll have a ball.

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