Modern Fingerstyle & Tunings
Extended Range Mastery
Artistry and Modern Fingerstyle
Tapping into Creative Fingerstyle
Featuring complete, tactical courses from Yvette Young, Sarah Longfield, Calum Graham, and Amber Russell. Calum Graham lays the groundwork with a look at the fundamentals of modern fingerstyle covering harmonics, percussion, tapping and more. Amber Russell takes these concepts to the next level and shows how to create musically dense compositions. Sarah Longfield shows how she gets the most out of 7 and 8 stringed guitars using musical examples from her repertoire. And lastly, Yvette Young shows how to add sonic texture, melody and harmonic detail with polyphonic compositions on a single guitar.
This is a full, 17+ hour collection featuring 114 step-by-step lessons with full supplemental content.
Filmed with 6 cameras and stream in awesome 4k video quality and downloadable in 1080p.
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Know what to practice after each lesson with guided suggestions, tabs, jamtracks and more.
Know what to practice after each lesson with guided suggestions, tabs, jamtracks and more.
The Eccentric Collection features 114 lessons and 17+ hours of video.
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Taught by Yvette Young
If you are interested in writing or learning music that is melodic, emotionally driven, and harmonically detailed, then this course is for you! Break out of the usual habits and go-to chord shapes you are familiar with, and get inspired by the world of open tunings. Yvette will introduce you to how they can be utilized in writing full-sounding, melodic music, along with dedicated lessons for various techniques and song-writing tips.
Welcome to Yvette Young's series! Join Yvette as she gets creative with open tunings.
While this course will primarily focus on the tuning, DADF#AE, there are a lot of other options out there. In this lesson, Yvette introduces just a handful of those tunings.
Yvette teaches a right hand exercise that doesn't require much thought, but will help build the endurance and muscle memory necessary for fast, controlled fingerpicking.
Now that you're right hand is more limber and controlled, it's time to work on the left hand. This left hand exercise will walk through the D-Scale, working on muscle memory and getting more familiar with fretboard in this tuning.
Learn another passive, muscle memory building exercise that will work on speed and coordination between your thumb and your fingers.
Continuing on with a triplet fingerpicking pattern, Yvette brings in the fretting hand and plays the triplets over a D Major scale.
In this lesson, Yvette takes a look at the two different forms of movement around the fretboard, horizontal and vertical.
Learn a riff from Yvette's song, Shibuya. This riff involves complex shapes with fingerpicking and a moving bass line.
As guitarists, we never have enough fingers. As Yvette demonstrates in this lesson, two-handed tapping is a great way to create a flurry of notes that simply can't be achieved any other way.
Tap pull-offs are a useful tool for expanding and filling out your sound. Join Yvette as she walks through her approach to this technique and teaches a riff that utilizes it.
Building off of what we've learned so far with two-handed tapping, Yvette teaches a new melodic idea in this lesson.
Tap slides are a very useful tool for adding fluidity to your runs. Join Yvette as she shows how to effectively utilize this cool technique.
Coming from a background in classical music, Yvette has mastered the art of practicing. In this lesson she teaches a very useful tool for effective practice. We'll be using this technique throughout the remainder of the course, so pay attention!
In this lesson, Yvette breaks down a staccato tapping riff from her song, Shibuya.
This lesson expands on the tapping techniques Yvette's demonstrated so far in the course by blending them with fingerpicking, to create beautiful, complex melodies.
If you've ever feel stuck coming up with new riffs or melodies, changing the time signature can be a great way to get the creative juices flowing. Join Yvette as she explores this concept.
Yvette teaches a fun riff with a blend of tapping and fingerstyle over an odd, changing meter.
Time to give those fingers a work out! In this lesson, Yvette teaches and demonstrates tap flourshes that require some serious coordination.
In this lesson, Yvette walks through the way she approaches songwriting and utilizing various techniques to create engaging dynamics and texture in your creations.
Tapping on acoustic is typically much harder than on electric. In this lesson, Yvette explains and demonstrates her approach to this technique.
Sometimes you just don't know where to go next in a song. While there's no magic bullet, Yvette shares some tools that have helped her break out of a creative funk.
Singing and playing doesn't have to be as hard as it seems. In this lesson, Yvette demonstrates some tricks to help you master this intimidating skill.
Sit down with Yvette and take a look at her song, Blossom. Drawing upon many of the techniques she's taught in this course, this song utilizes fingerpicking, slides and harmonics in the context of a beautiful, flowing melody, supported by easy harmonies.
Join Yvette as she walks through the song Nautilus. This track is a great exercise in tapping and contains a number of riffs that should be familiar from the series.
This song has made it's way into at least a couple of the lessons in the series, but in this lesson we're going to take a comprehensive look at it and break it into manageable chunks.
Meet Yvette Young
Yvette Young was raised in a classical household full of music, and started piano at age 4 and violin at age 7. She eventually competed in international competitions and quickly toured with 2 different orchestras. Through her classical music experience, she taught herself how to play the acoustic guitar and eventually moved to the world of electric. Yvette became acquainted with Strandberg Guitars through playing their Boden 7-string.
She is currently touring and playing with her band, Covet and has toured both Japan and Europe. In her spare time, Yvette takes care of birds, teaches art, and also produces drawings and paintings.
Yvette takes most of her compositional inspiration from nature, particularly the sea. Her two-handed tapping/finger picked playing style has been described as “reminiscent of playing the piano”, which fits with her classical upbringing.
Taught by Sarah Longfield
The Strandberg-wielding, polyrhythmic tapping technician herself is here to set the record straight and document her unique approach to guitar. A multi-instrumentalist from a young age, Sarah Longfield is now being praised for both her bombastic covers and dazzling original compositions. Her JamPlay exclusive course reveals her advanced techniques, how she creates and records her music and much more.
Sarah gives you a quick rundown of what to expect from her new course.
Sarah shows us a tapping warm up exercise that builds in complexity.
Sarah shows a tapping exercise that centers on a complex rhythmic motif.
Sarah builds on the rhythm from the previous lesson, this time applying it to chords.
Sarah shows how she stashes her pick for tapping so that she is able to switch back and forth at any time.
Sarah teaches a legato tapping exercise in four parts that takes you up and down the neck of the guitar.
Sarah teaches a 2 pattern motif that starts on the 5th fret of the low b string and ascends to the 12th fret of the high e string. Utilizing string skipping extensively, this piece is a little more challening. Sarah breaks it down note for note and at slow speeds.
In this lesson, Sarah teaches the odd-count fingerpicking patterns that are prevalent in her body of work. She details 3 of her favorite patterns and teaches them using a fun chord progression. While challenging, these fingerpicking patterns are integral to the rest of the course.
Mixing drumming rudiments and tapped guitar playing, Sarah shows how to take rhythm playing to new heights. First, she teaches the rhythmic concepts and then how to sync both hands for some real guitar gymnastics. While complex, she breaks everything down to individual components to make learning much simpler.
Drawing on the same techniques discussed in the previous lesson, Sarah takes a look at tapping while playing bass lines and chords simultaneously. This is a 7 string lesson, but it can be adapted to 6 string if you move the shapes around.
In this lesson, Sarah shows advanced tapped arpeggio techniques that are challenging for her to play. These are meant to be used as a warmup as well as technical tapping practice. Be forewarned, these are not for the faint of heart and will take time to get under the fingers.
Sequenced legato tapping runs can be played very quickly, but they tend to sound predictable. So in this lesson, Sarah explains how to use the same concepts from the previous lesson sans the patterns. This is great for expansive solo playing.
Sarah likes to take full advantage of the extended range that 7 and 8 stringed guitars provide. Her compositions regularly feature simultaneous bass line, chords and melody playing on one guitar. In this lesson, she explains how to work systematically to achieve this sound.
A slightly more advanced musical piece, Sarah teaches this excerpt to further solidify polyrhythmic tapping techniques. Learn this fun and challenging solo lick by lick while developing percussive dynamics and tapping chops.
Applying what has been learned so far, Sarah uses an excerpt from her song "Tydes". Using only 2 fingers on each hand, this is a fun and simple way to practice the concepts so far in the course. The concepts in this piece are integral to exploring the fretboard in new ways.
Sarah teaches a 2 pattern motif that starts on the 5th fret of the low b string and ascends to the 12th fret of the high e string. Utilizing string skipping extensively, this piece is a little more challenging. Sarah breaks it down note for note and at slow speeds.
This lesson uses one of Sarah's favorite 5-string minor sweep arpeggios. Using 16th note triplets and tapping, this is fun to play yet challenging. Sarah assumes the student has a basic understanding of sweep picking. If not, there are many great lessons on the topic in the member's area.
In this lesson, Sarah teaches how to clean up sweep picking technique. This will help those who are just starting out all the way up to advanced players. Using 3 to 6 string sweeps, she teaches how to practice using only the strumming hand. Once clean sweeping is achieved, the student learns to incorporate the fretting hand.
Alternate tunings on a 7 or 8 string guitar can dramatically alter the tonal possibilites. In this lesson, Sarah explains how to creatively tune extended range guitars to get beyond overused chord shapes. She also explains her favorite tunings and corresponding chord shapes.
Learn the 16th note intro to Sarah's song "Quiescent." The open C tuning and 110 bpm tempo make this a great way to explore tapping melodies. She teaches how to lead with the tapping hand while filling space with the fretting hand.
Building on the concepts of the last lesson, Sarah shows how to use open tuning chords to full effect. She uses backing tracks, at multiple tempos, to illustrate. She also teaches how to master the chords that have tricky fingerings.
The importance of good finger tone for tapping cannot be overstated. Sarah teaches how to get a pleasant percussive sound without the need to use a compressor. This gives the player much more control over the dynamics of the sound.
Sarah believes that recording one's self is a great way to improve. Recording allows the student to listen back and hear mistakes clearly. She explains the best way to do this and the techniques she recommends all students start with.
Getting stuck and hitting plateaus is part of the process of improving at guitar playing. In this lesson, Sarah explains the mindset needed to overcome obstacles and she reveals her go-to tricks to break out of ruts. This is a can't-miss lesson for any guitar player.
Learn the tapped intro to Sarah's song "First Flight". One of her favorite tapping parts, this one jumps around the fretboard and has a bouncy, fun feel. Quite fast at 140bpm, Sarah breaks it into sections and provides multiple tempos to learn and practice with.
This ambient fingerpicking lick makes use of both multiple simultaneous notes and individual notes to give it a haunting sound. This is useful as an exercise to improve your dexterity with both hands, as well as familiarize yourself with unusual chord changes.
Sarah returns with another ambient fingerpicking piece. This features chords that flow and meld into one another creating an almost other-worldly ambient sound. This exercise will improve your dexterity, accuracy and open up alternate musical realities.
The tense and aggressive feel of this lick stems from the fact that it was born during a period of frustration and intense musical writer's block. Learn the lick that helped Sarah break out of her creative drought.
Sarah Longfield introduces a fast metal lick. This lick is one of her favorites for good reason, it uses all the strings, moves all over the fretboard and offers the flexibility to transition between tapping and picking. Whether you want to use this lick as a ruthless practice tool, or modify it to include in your own music, you won't be disappointed.
Sarah attributes her unique sound to the fact that she is a multi-instrumentalist. Her rhythmic tapping technique was born from her love of piano and the drums. In this lesson, she explains how learning other instruments will expand your guitar playing.
Meet Sarah Longfield
Sarah Longfield learned numerous instruments at a young age, including piano, drums, violin and others. Her parents encouraged her deep fascination with music and gave her to ability to immerse herself in it. She developed a keen interest in extended range guitars and has been playing 7 and 8 stringed guitars since the age of 12.
Sarah took guitar lessons around that age and became obsessed with metal music. She would spend most of her free time learning songs from bands such as Meshuggah, Born of Osiris, All Shall Perish and others. This eventually led to her uploading covers to her YouTube channel and creating a massive following online.
A music and gear nerd, she has written and recorded many compositions. In addition to her band, The Fine Constant, she also releases instrumental compositions under her own name. She uses many excerpts from these compositions in her JamPlay.com master class.
Sarah tours all over the world with bands such as Animals as Leaders, Intervals, and Plini. She continues to grow her following of loyal fans, build partnerships with top instrument manufacturers and is on the cutting edge of modern recording techniques.
Taught by Calum Graham
Award-winning Canadian fingerstyle guitarist Calum Graham aims to transform the average fingerstyle player into an artist. Using a modern approach to fingerstyle guitar, Calum teaches you techniques in the context of his own songs to get you on your way to composing your own beautiful fingerstyle songs.
Award winning, Canadian fingerstyle guitarist Calum Graham introduces his Jamplay Artist Series, which aims to transform the average fingerstyle player into an artist. Using modern techniques such as harmonics, hammer-ons, two handed tapping, rhythmic accents, you'll be well on your way to creating your own fingerstyle guitar compositions in no time!
Using his song "The Nomad" Calum shows us a technique inspired by one of his biggest influences: the great Michael Hedges.
The idea of counterpart in a composition is two different lines moving counter to each other. In this lesson, Calum uses his song "The Nomad" to illustrate the use of this technique.
In this lesson, Calum shows us an energetic technique achieved by slapping the strings with your right hand. Again, this is in the context of his song "The Nomad".
When constructing fingerstyle pieces, one must act as their own bass player. In this lesson, Calum gives an introduction to playing basslines, and shows us multiple ways to play them.
Now that we've learned how to execute a bassline in different ways, it's time to layer another part on top of it! A challenging concept that will further your left and right hand independence.
Calum continues working us through his song "The Nomad". This lesson is all about a two handed tapping sequence in the song, meant to strengthen our hand independence.
Adding variation and nuance to your playing sometimes consists of learning to play melodies different ways. In this lesson, Calum takes a simple melody line and plays it with open strings, then with harmonics.
Truly artistic acoustic arrangements can almost sound as though there is a small orchestra at your fingertips. Calum is a master at this technique and uses this lesson to show you how to achieve this effect.
In this lesson Calum takes a look at he traditional, time honored technique of the call and answer, putting it into a modern sounding fingerstyle passage.
As important as melody and harmony are, the acoustic guitar affords a unique opportunity to emphasize another musical element: rhythm. Calum shows us how to think of our guitar as percussion instrument or even a drum set in this lesson.
As you can probably see, playing in Calum's style requires lots of dexterity and strength in your fingers! Well, it just so happens that he has a great set of exercises to help you gain that strength and dexterity: Yoga for your fingers!
Part of mastering this style on the acoustic guitar is learning how to make your guitar take on the personality of many different instruments. In this lesson, Calum shows how to incorporate different techniques that will make you sound like a one man band!
In this lesson, Calum shows some advanced right hand techniques like rasguedo, string security and string skipping.
Harmonics can be a great tool for adding flavor and uniqueness to your solo guitar pieces. In this lesson, Calum shows us an excerpt from his song "Waiting" to demonstrate the use of pinch harmonics.
A technique that provides an aggressive percussion approach as well as a melodic uniqueness, percussive slap harmonics is a useful tool in your arsenal of artistic acoustic techniques.
Acoustic artistry involves being able to multitask on your instrument. Playing bass parts, counter melodies and melodies at the same time is a common occurrence. In this lesson, Calum gives us a passage to work on that will sharpen our multitasking skills.
Creating internal rhythm is the process of filling some of the space between melodic notes with ghost notes or passing notes to give the passage more of a rhythmic feel. In this lesson Calum uses his song "Three Way Street" as an example of how to create internal rhythm.
In this lesson, Calum shows us the advantage of using open strings. As the example, he uses his song "Phoenix Rising".
To get a little more proficient at two handed tapping, Calum shows us how to practice the major scale using this technique.
The sound of cascading harmonics is very reminiscent of a harp. In this lesson, Calum show a lick that can be used to add that quality to your songs.
Although not as common, up and down picking strokes with the thumb can be used in fingerstyle guitar playing. In this lesson Calum gives us some pointers on how to execute this.
The CAGED concept has helped countless guitarists over the years. In this lesson, Calum gives his take on the concept, and explores its usefulness.
Mixing certain elements together gives us a "guitar stew" of artistic techniques resulting in a complex and beautiful musical situation. Percussive guitar, harmonics and hammer-ons are on the ingredient list in this lesson.
In this lesson Calum gives us his take on the classic technique called Travis Picking. Using his song "Through the Photo Album", he takes us into this very Tommy Emmanuel-esque composition.
Using open strings in your fingerstyle playing is a key technique. Not only does it allow you to achieve a nice sustain, it can also be handy for buying yourself a split second for position changes.
In part two of this lesson on using open strings, Calum shows us how to traverse the length of the neck playing a variation of the C major scale, using as many open strings as we can along the way.
Now that we've used open strings to make our scales sustain more, it's time to add yet another technique - harmonics. In this lesson Calum combines fretted notes, open strings and harmonics to achieve a very harp-like sound on the instrument.
Being able to tune your guitar without an electronic tuner is a great thing to know in a pinch, but also can help train your ear. Calum revisits some popular self tuning methods in this lesson, possibly revealing some perspectives you've never given much thought to!
Meet Calum Graham
At 27 years old, Calum Graham has already accomplished what most artists twice his age could only hope for. In 2014, Calum was named one of the World’s Top 30 Guitarists under 30 by Acoustic Guitar Magazine. His signature playing style has enthralled millions of listeners on YouTube and Spotify which has led to tours across Canada, USA, Germany, France, England, Scotland, Ireland, and China.
Calum plays the Acoustic, Baritone, and Harp Guitar in his live set, and his original melodies are guaranteed to pull at your heartstrings. His music embraces elements of many genres using his own unique fingerstyle technique inspired by the likes of Michael Hedges and Andy Mckee.
Calum began to play the guitar at the age of 13. Five years later in the summer of 2010, Graham attended the Canadian Guitar Festival and entered into the prestigious Canadian Fingerstyle Guitar Competition. Impressed with his original compositions, the judges awarded First Place to Graham, a feat no other teenager has accomplished in the history of the festival. The clip of his winning performance has now generated over 1 million hits on YouTube.
Graham continues to write, teach, and tour extensively with his well established repertoire of original compositions to audiences around the world.
Taught by Amber Russell
Fingerstyle guitarist Amber Russell has had a diverse platform of musical outlets during her almost 20 years of composing music, including piano, bass, vocalist and ukulele. Amber covers altered tunings for fingerstyle guitar, allowing you to tap into your personal creative sound. By doing something unfamiliar and stepping out of the boundaries of what is "safe", you can approach the guitar as if it's your first time playing, without the "reference points" and safety of the "norm". Learn the specifics on multiple harmonic techniques, over-hand tapping/strumming, and how to incorporate percussion into your music using alternate tunings.
Amber Russell introduces us to her fingerstyle course where we will learn different technical elements that will help us tap into our creativity.
Amber jumps right in encouraging us to think differently than we normally do about the guitar. Using a section of her song, 'Obstacles of Inspiration', we start off in DADGAD tuning with some overhand tapping!
Playing fingerstyle requires the ability to play different techniques at the same time. This of course, is not always an easy endeavor! Amber gets us started on this path by having us use overhand tapping and strumming.
Harmonics are a trademark technique when it comes to fingerstyle guitar. In this lesson, Amber not only explores a myriad of harmonic techniques, she shows us a new tuning!
Now we look at more harmonics, using a section of Amber's song - 'Love vs. Logic'
This lesson pays homage to the late Michael Hedges, as we focus on very rhythmic left hand hammer ons and pull offs. This technique will allow us to add other sounds later with our right hand.
Now let's take the hammer ons and pull offs we learned in the previous lesson and take it a step further, by adding false harmonics with our right hand.
Now we look to add another modern fingerstyle technique: Percussion. Amber gets us started with a simple 'kick drum' sound on a section of her song, 'Love vs. Logic'.
In this lesson, Amber uses the guitar in a piano-like manner, layering different parts for the desired effect. Watch and learn as she dissects a portion of her song, 'Falling Out of Love'.
Multitasking is the theme of this lesson! As the left hand plays the melody, the right had adds the bass part, as well as strums the upper strings. But not to worry, Amber breaks it all down and show us how to add each part until we get it up to speed.
We often think of palm muting as a very rock and metal technique. Amber shows us how this technique can be right at home here in the fingerstyle genre.
Having the ability to easily go between palm muting and not palm muting is a great technique to have under your belt. Amber shows us the mute and release technique in this lesson.
Now let's take palm muting a step further. This time we will be muting certain sections and adding a percussive 'pulse' to the riff using the palm of your strumming hand.
This lesson returns us to using some more harmonic techniques. Amber reacquaints us with the use of the strike harmonic, pull off harmonic and the ring finger rake harmonic.
It's time for a new tuning! Amber introduces us to her song - 'Portland Dance' and the DADF#AC# tuning.
To begin 'Portland Dance', it's important to first learn the pulse of the percussion first. Amber walks us through the "kick and snare" pattern that makes this song move.
Now that we have the basic percussion and bassline, it's time to add in melodic and harmonic elements of the song.
Of course everything is about the sounds you make to create a feeling, but sometimes we can use different techniques with the same notes to create yet another, quite different feeling. From slapping harmonics, to strumming it or plucking it, each variation adds to the desired end result.
Using a banjo capo allows you to explore yet another way to be creative on the guitar. Amber shows us how to combine a very different sounding open tuning, along with a banjo capo to create tonalites that are outside our normal scope of sounds on the guitar.
Let's add to the bassline we learned in the previous lesson, a melody that will challenge our normal habits of hand placement on the guitar. With practice, you'll be able to freely move around the 'obstruction' that is the banjo capo in no time!
In this lesson, Amber shares a technique she stumbled upon when experimenting with the banjo capo. When bending a note against the capo, it can be used to mute and accent that note to give it a unique texture.
Why should our other fingers have all the fun! Amber shows us a fun riff, and how to use our thumbs in a creative way to hold the bass notes.
In this lesson, we will be using hammer-ons to play the bassline while keeping a steady pulse to make sure the bass line is in time. This exercise will be great to help you keep a good tempo and feel more comfortable multitasking in this way.
Let's add more percussive elements by snapping the top of the guitar (as we learned in a previous lesson) and striking the lower part of the body. It's up to each of us individually to find that 'sweet spot' on our guitar, that when we strike, it resonates in the best possible way!
Now let's add a little tapping section to break up the verses of this piece. We are going to change our range of movement, and adapt it to the over hand tapping technique.
Amber takes one of the melody sections we learned in the previous lesson, and turns it into a percussion only section. This should be a lot of fun!
Sometimes it's the subtle techniques that can add a lot to the song! Here we follow Amber as she shows us a small tapping section. Pay attention to the length of the notes as well as some of the organization of the notes.
Even though it can sometimes seem harder to play something slow, it's imperative that you learn how to multitask by playing and combining the parts at a very slow tempo. This allows your hands to catch up to your brain, or maybe vice versa!
Now let's take the ring finger rake harmonic technique and add percussion to it. There are so many combinations of techniques to creatively explore!
In our last lesson, Amber shows us how to slide octave shapes while adding percussion and harmonics.
Meet Amber Russell
Amber Russell has had a diverse platform of musical outlets during her almost 20 years of composing music. In her home town of Elkhart Indiana, at age 13 she picked up the guitar after regularly watching her older brother Joe play bass in his band over the years. For the next 6 years she was an active Singer songwriter in her band Geronimo with percussionist Danielle Husky. David Guevara took over as Geronimo's percussionist in 2011. Performing and composing songs with her guitar, harmonica, and ukulele.
In the summer of 2012 she relocated to Los Angeles.She then continued her journey as a singer songwriter with her band Seropolar, with her bandmate Steve Avila for the following 3 years. They practiced and performed in Marina Del Rey/ Venice Beach area regularly. Amber worked part time hosting an artist show case and open mic in Silverlake, during this time she found a profound interest in Fingerstyle guitar.
Her solo acoustic music didn't take off until she relocated to Portland, Oregon. A city calm and collect, yet outrageous and weird enough to find the appropriate audience for her unique and eclectic sound. She currently resides in Portland and is working on a new album that should launch in November of 2019.