SOLO FLATPICKING GUITAR—TAUGHT BY ROLLY BROWN—Stefan Grossman Guitar Workshop GW1012. Ninety minutes, $29.95. (Stefan Grossman Workshop, P.O. Box 802, Sparta, NJ 07871, www.guitarvideos.com.)
While readers here may be more interested in playing within the context of a band, this ninety-minute DVD on solo flatpicking guitar techniques is a valuable and well-taught introduction to the fundamentals of flatpicking whether solo or in a band.
Rolly Brown has a strong background in both fingerpicking and flatpicking, but more importantly, he has years of teaching experience, which comes through. He leads the student from basic flatpick techniques through the use of arpeggios, cross-picking, rolls, melodic emphasis, and other topics all toward integrating melody, rhythm, and chord structure to achieve a full sound on solo guitar, distinct to each song.
Stephan Grossman’s Workshop puts out quality products. This is well filmed with excellent sound and comes with PDFs of tab and topics on the DVD. This is not intended to be specifically a bluegrass guitar tutorial, but Brown does go over tunes such as “Coleman’s Reel,” “St. Anne’s Reel,” and “Sweet Sunny South,” which are solidly within the bluegrass jam tradition. Recommended for beginning to intermediate guitar players looking to make their playing cleaner, more efficient, and more inventive.CVS