Rosewood: Southeast Asian, Amazonian, & Honduran

Southeast Asian Rosewood Southeast Asian rosewood is an endangered species. This wood is no longer harvested for guitar manufacture, and is therefore extremely hard to find from legitimate sources. Southeast Asian rosewood has the exotic colors that make Brazilian rosewood so highly sought. It tends toward a reddish cast. Black grain lines offer contrast, but…

Rosewood: Brazilian, Indian, Madagascar & Cocobolo

Rosewood is a common choice of wood for guitars and mandolins. It has been used for backs, sides, tops, and fretboards. But did you know that instruments are built with several different types of rosewood? Seven of the most common are: Brazilian. Indian. Madagascar. Cocobolo. Amazonian. Honduran. Southeast Asian. Does country of origin make any…

You Can Teach Yourself Dobro

Teaching yourself Dobro is easy—especially with this book! You Can Teach Yourself Dobro by Janet Davis offers a logical sequence to learning this unique instrument, starting with the basics and using previous skills as a foundation for new skills. The book is divided into lessons, early lessons covering essential technique and subsequent lessons introducing a…

Pros and Cons of Laminated Woods for Guitarists

Perhaps you already have a particular type of wood in mind for your new guitar. Whether that wood is solid or laminated will make a tremendous difference in the sound that you will hear. Solid wood is exactly what the words imply. Pieces of solid wood are carved into the necessary shape for a guitar….

Pick Punch

Here’s a fun gadget every flatpicking guitarist will love! The Pick Punch lets you make your very own guitar picks out of any suitable plastic. Put those old credit cards and gift cards to use to make one-of-a-kind picks! Using the sturdy Pick Punch is super easy: Feed your plastic into the punch. Punch out…

Why Cowboys Sang

The singing cowboy is by no means a Hollywood invention. History records the fact that cowboys always sang, starting back when cattle trails began. At first, there were no true “cowboy songs.” Most cowboys just sang the good old folk songs that they had grown up with, ranging from mountain fiddle tunes like “Old Dan…

How to Play Minor Chords on a Dobro

The Dobro or resonator guitar has a unique feature that can be a great help or hindrance, depending on how you look at it: It is tuned to an open G chord. This means that if you strum all of the strings you will produce a G major chord instead of some kind of discordant…

8 Reasons to Memorize Scales

Memorize those scales. How many times have beginning musicians heard this advice, no matter what instrument or genre they are playing? Drilling scales may seem boring when you are anxious to learn new songs, but this discipline has its worth. Here are a few reasons to consider memorizing some scales: Improve your coordination. As a…

Sharpen Your Skills—Record Your Music

Looking for an effective way to improve your musical ability in a relatively short period of time? There is a simple tool that can work these wonders for you. This tool is a microphone. There is nothing quite like recording and playback to evaluate your progress. As we run through our songs, we get used…