Making Music Accessible

Making Music Accessible

Products by A Day’s Work The products produced by A Day’s Work are created by a very gifted and highly intelligent man, N.Raymond Day. These products are special because they are the considerate, loving adaptions and tools needed to provide physically challenged people an opportunity to enjoy musical instrument playing to the fullest. I met Ray and his wife Barb this summer, and they brought me many of their products to preview. Once he showed me the ingenuity behind what he made, I was hooked. For instance, this instrument holder…

Bluegrass Basics: Vocal Harmonies

Bluegrass Basics: Vocal Harmonies

Bluegrass music is characterized by two things: stringed acoustic instruments and incredible vocal harmonies. Within these vocal harmonies you will commonly hear what is called the “high, lonesome sound.” Being able to bring both aspects of the vocals that Bluegrass is known for together is essential if you want to play, and sing, true Bluegrass music.   Bluegrass basics: Vocal harmonies   The basic structure of a Bluegrass harmony is three parts: the lead vocal melody, the tenor and the baritone. Each one will be singing along at the same…

Bluegrass Basics: Runs and Licks

Bluegrass Basics: Runs and Licks

NOTE: I’m focusing more on the ‘G run’ as it is so important to bluegrass, but i’ll touch on another at the end…   Bluegrass music is a genre with set ways of playing it. From the traditional instruments, to the boom – chuck rhythm to the focus of this article: the G run. This very important run is one that you must learn if you want to be a Bluegrass guitarist. It is as essential as the boom – chuck in creating the sound that Bluegrass is known for,…

12 bar blues lesson

12 bar blues lesson

The most popular form of the blues is the 12 bar blues. This basic structure has been used to write countless songs. If you master the 12 bar blues style you can expect to find yourself able to play blues classics such as:     St. Louis Blues Hound Dog Corrina, Corrina Stormy Monday Easy Rider     And countless others.   12 Bar blues lesson   The 12 bar blues pattern is one which follows the pattern of having three lines per verse, with the first line being repeated….

Bluegrass Music Timeline

Bluegrass Music Timeline

Bluegrass, Newgrass and Country Music   Bluegrass music, a close cousin of country music, is a fun, rhythmic and highly danceable music that has been picking up some serious momentum over the last half a decade or so.   While bluegrass music has always been popular it is experiencing a revival and becoming much more a part of the mainstream than ever before. Bluegrass purists may scoff at calling bands like Mumford and Sons and Trampled by Turtles “bluegrass” but there is no doubt these bands and many others have…

Bluegrass instruments: Acoustic Guitar

Bluegrass instruments: Acoustic Guitar

Bluegrass music is best known as a traditional acoustic music style. One of the most easily recognized instruments in bluegrass music to the record buying public is the acoustic guitar. This icon of world music, perhaps one of the most important instruments in music history, is played by bluegrass musicians from every era of the genre.   We’ll look at what an acoustic guitar in bluegrass is, the common varieties and what makes them sound the way they do.   Bluegrass instruments: Acoustic Guitar   The features of traditional acoustic…

Home Made Instruments: The Musical Saw

Home Made Instruments: The Musical Saw

All kinds of household items have been used to create music. The one that you should be the most careful with, some would argue, is the musical saw. Sometimes known as the singing saw, this instrument is literally a wood cutting hand saw that is played with a bow and that can sing like any starlet you have heard – just without words!   Homemade Instruments: The Musical Saw   There are few instruments that are as simple as the musical saw that create music as stirring as it. One…

Bluegrass musician bios: Earl Scruggs

Bluegrass musician bios: Earl Scruggs

Earl Scruggs if famous for playing the banjo and creating a large part of the sound that came to be known as Bluegrass music. His distinct style came to be known as ‘Scruggs Style,’ which was a stylized three-finger playing style. He was born January 6, 1924 and shared his love of the banjo and Bluegrass music with the world until he died on March 28, 2012.   Bluegrass musician bios: Earl Scruggs   Scruggs was born in North Carolina in a small community known as Flint Hill. His father,…

Bluegrass musician bios: Bela Fleck

Bluegrass musician bios: Bela Fleck

Bela Fleck has one of those names that sounds like he was born somewhere else, but he was born July 10, 1958 right in New York City. Over the years he has established himself as the most innovative and technically gifted banjo players in the world. Few can touch his mix of Bluegrass, jazz, classical and folk – the musical styles he absorbed while living in one of the World’s most diverse cities.   Bluegrass musician bios: Bela Fleck   Bela was born Bela Anton Leos Fleck. His name came…

Bluegrass Musician Bios: Bill Monroe

Bluegrass Musician Bios: Bill Monroe

Not too many people are credited with crafting their own musical style, but Bill Monroe is one of those people. He was born on September 13, 1911 and died September 9, 1996 with a musical legacy all his own. Bill Monroe had one of the biggest hands in creating bluegrass music, and is often called The Father of Bluegrass.   Bluegrass Musician Bios: Bill Monroe   Bill didn’t start out as a bluegrass musician, mostly because he hadn’t invented it yet. It all starts in Kentucky on his father’s farm…