Lick of the Day #1

lick 3-29-17

I posted a couple of licks to the Daily Frailer’s group on Facebook yesterday. Then it hit me that this would be a fun feature for the blog.

Today’s lick starts out with a basic frailing pattern with two changes. First we replace the strums with rests. Then we add in a bend release on third string at the second fret.

The way I play this is fairly simple. When I am playing the first quarter note strike on the first string I bend the third string. When the time comes I strike the bend third string and gently release the bend while keeping pressure on the string so that it continues to ring.

The bend – release is a quarter note. So, in spite of the rests and bends the count is: 1 2 & 3 4 &.

The next tricky part is in the third measure. We start with a full chord hammer. That is fairly easy. On the third and fourth beats of the measure we are still holding the C chord, but out middle finger has moved from the fourth string second fret to the third string. We pull off creating two eight notes – and then we hammer back to the fourth string (that’s a phantom hammer). We play the phantom hammer as a quarter note.

The count for the third measure is: 1 & 2 & 3 & 4

I don’t recommend playing this one tentatively. It’s a fast lick, so dive into it and let yourself make a few mistakes. Listen to Earl Scruggs playing songs like Shucking The Corn for inspiration.

Will a little practice this lick can give you a cool bluegrass D-tuner effect without investing in a set of D-Tuners.

Once you can play this lick forget the tab and start looking for ways to use the elements of this lick in new ways.

Lick Ingredients

  • Basic frailing strum
  • Rests
  • Pre-Bend
  • Bend-Release
  • Full Chord Hammer
  • Phantom Hammer
  • Quarter note hammer

Where else can you use one or more of these techniques?

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