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Achievable Fingerstyle Composition

Course Begins Monday, September 19th, 2016 at 8:00pm EST

Starting September 19th, 2016 and live each Monday for the following 8 weeks. Jim Deeming delivers a much-needed live course covering fingerstyle composition... and demystifying this advanced, yet achievable style.

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In this eight week course you will learn how to build your own fingerstyle arrangement of a song from beginning to end. You will learn a step-by-step process for dissecting a song into the key building blocks on which an arrangement is made. Then you'll make it your own by adding all the features available in fingerstyle, laying down a groove, playing the bass, chords and melody all at the same time. From there we will look at ideas and tools you can use to craft a basic song into an interesting arrangement you'll be proud to show off. For the core of the course we'll build on a familiar song but to wrap things up, we'll take a look at composing your own song from the ground up.

Get full access to this live course with a full JamPlay Membership, which includes access to all past live courses and over 5,000 on-demand lessons.

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"Fixing Fingerstyle Flubs"

Even Jim makes mistakes sometimes! In this lesson he takes a fun little lick that gives him trouble and shows how to use a metronome to diagnose and fix the problem.


"Approaching Fingerstyle Arrangements"

Creating fingerstyle guitar arrangements may seem complicated... but it doesn't have to be! In this lesson, Jim breaks down a basic method for approaching a popular melody.

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About our Live Courses

We have upgraded, revamped, and organized in-studio, live weekly workshops broadcasted in 1080p. These focused, task-based workshops include full tablature, interactivity with the instruction, and even homework each week. We are bringing live, educational instruction into the next generation with this platform.

5,000 Lessons

In 2016, we completely re-engineered our recording studio with top of the line gear, including a full suite of 4k cameras complimented by a new audio outfit. The result is beautiful live streams to your computer, in qualities as high as 1080p!

79 Instructors

Each live course is supplemented with full tablature, music notation, and even backing tracks. Our live lessons are focused, planned, and even give you homework options on how to improve and look forward to the following week.

Live Lessons

Our staff fields questions from the audience throughout each section, and opens the "classroom" up for questions throughout each course. You also have the ability to call in live with your own video stream!


Our live platform has been a major focus over the past 18 months, and we are very excited to fully unleash it's capability! Attend any of these courses with a full JamPlay subscription and get the benefit of full interaction with our instructors in a focused, planned course. We even have the ability to field your questions with live video call in!

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Full Course Schedule

View the full course schedule below. And of course, we keep everything, so if you miss a week you can always watch our archive of live courses. Tabs, backing tracks, and a full course PDF are provided for students, along with homework for each week! Interact with other students along with the instructor and get the instruction you need to advance your playing.

Date Topic

Session 1

9/19/16 at 8pm EST Get Access

Fingerstyle Basics You'll Need

We will discuss the basic building blocks of a song and some common terminology to get you started. We'll also review and demonstrate each of the core fingerstyle skills you'll need for the coming weeks. This should get you up to speed!

Session 2

9/26/16 at 8pm EST Get Access

Melody Is Job One

No matter what else you add, melody is what makes a song make sense. We'll start with a sample song and learn how to map it to your guitar. This important step will set the stage for the rest of the arrangement process.

Session 3

10/3/16 at 10pm EST Get Access

Chords Are The Scenery

If the melody is the song's "story", chords are the scenic background as we go along. They are not just part of the structure - they set the tone and "color" of the song. We'll talk about how to find the chords no matter what key the song is in and how to get them put together in a way that makes sense.

Session 4

10/10/16 at 10pm EST Get Access

Putting It All Together

Now you'll put chords and melody together. In fingerstyle, you have the tools to play both at once, but caution, there are challenges ahead! This session will be totally focused on your left hand, making decisions about fingerings, choosing alternative chord positions or possibly even changing to a different key.

Session 5

10/17/16 at 10pm EST Get Access

Get in the Groove

Next we'll focus on the right hand, which is in control of the groove. You've probably heard it said, "Your left hand tells me what you know - your right hand tells me who you are". The soul, the feeling of a song is driven by your right hand fingers and thumb and this is when we'll add "life" to the arrangement.

Session 6

10/24/16 at 10pm EST Get Access

Make It Yours

Fingerstyle lets you put lots of spices in your recipe and this week we'll look at some ways to customize your arrangement. Techniques like walking bass lines, alternate chords, syncopation and more will put the "cool" in your song and make it something you'll want to hear and play over and over again.

Session 7

10/31/16 at 10pm EST Get Access

The Big Picture

An arrangement that's truly a finished product has more than just repeating parts. Now we'll look at crafting intros, endings and other variations you can add to really put the polish on your song.

Session 8

11/7/16 at 10pm EST Get Access

More Than Just Covers

Creating your own cover arrangement is great, but what about composing your own material from the ground up? We'll wrap up this course with a look at the question, "Where do ideas come from?" You may not write an entire song but sometimes making up a bridge to drop in the middle of an arrangement is a tasty way to spice things up. We'll look at examples about how a simple idea can evolve into something bigger, even a whole song. Suddenly you're not repeating someone else's story, you're telling your own!