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Before The Blues - Early American Fingerstyle Guitar

Raised in Phoenix, Arizona, Dom Flemon’s involvement with music began by playing percussion in his high school band. After picking up the guitar and harmonica as a teenager, he began to play in local coffee houses and became a regular performer on the Arizona folk music scene. He took a brief break from playing music in order to pursue slam poetry and performed in two national poetry slams in 2002 and 2003. Aside from exploring slam poetry, he spent his early adulthood listening to records and discovering a love of folk music, blues, jazz, jug band music, country music and ‘50s rock ‘n’ roll. Dom became interested in folk musicians such as Phil Ochs, Dave Van Ronk, and Mike Seeger, as well as musicians such as Mississippi John Hurt, Howlin’ Wolf, Hank Williams, Chuck Berry and Carl Perkins. After stepping away from the slam poetry scene, he rekindled his interest in music, this time focusing on the old-time blues music of the pre-WWII era.

A multi-instrumentalist, Dom plays banjo, guitar, harmonica, fife, bones, bass drum, snare drum, and quills, in addition to singing. As a founding member of the Carolina Chocolate Drops, an African-American string band, Dom was able to explore his interest in bringing traditional music to new audiences. The band won a GRAMMY for its 2011 album Genuine Negro Jig and was nominated for its next album, Leaving Eden, in 2012. Dom says he would like to use the traditional forms of music he has heard and immersed himself in over the years to create new soundscapes that generate interest in old-time folk music. Focusing very much on creating music that is rooted in history but taking a contemporary approach, Dom hopes to reexamine what traditional music can become.

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    Hard Copy   $29.95  Item Number:  GW859

    Before The Blues - Early American Fingerstyle Guitar

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    "This DVD is an instructional tool for people who are interesting in finding different ways to approach American vernacular guitar. I have found in my studies of early country blues guitar that many of the styles of fingerpicking and strumming used by the early songsters incorporated parts of the banjo techniques used in old-time music. As the guitar became popular in the black communities of the South, there was a time when the two instruments freely interchanged ideas.

    I spent long hours practicing and learning the styles from various players in the South. Others approaches to fingerpicking were learnt from the 1920s recordings of musicians such as Jimmie Rodgers and Papa Charlie Jackson. They used a syncopated style to 'dress up' what would otherwise be simple chord progressions. 

    I hope this lesson will show a guitar approach that is perfect for accompanying a song and selling a performance. While the mechanics of the lesson may seem rudimentary, I believe you will be surprised at the way you can apply these techniques to your own style." - Dom Flemons

    A detailed tab/music booklet is included as a PDF file on the DVD. Each tune is taught phrase by phrase and played slowly on a split-screen. As well, a Bonus Audio section features the original recordings of the tunes taught.

    Titles include: My Little Lady, Keep On Truckin', Oh Babe Ain't No Lies, Steel Pony Blues, James Alley Blues, Fishin' Blues, I'm Not Jealous and Your Baby Ain't Sweet Like Mine 

    110 minutes - Level 2 - Detailed tab/music PDF file on the DVD

    Video Sample

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