December 2013 (Issue No. 252)

AG 252 Cover
 

ISSUE HIGHLIGHTS

Stéphane Wrembel discusses his instrumental blend of Gypsy jazz, rock, and world music; an 80th-birthday tribute to Willie Nelson; how to buy a vintage guitar at bargain prices; flatpicker Tim May on targeting chord tones and practicing strict alternate picking; reviews for the Alvarez-Yairi Masterworks DYMR70SB, Andrew White Freja 1022, and Headway EDM-1 and EDB-2; Kathy Kallick on writing bluegrass songs; a report from Healdsburg Guitar Festival 2013; find new melodic and harmonic pathways on the fingerboard by exploring Bach’s solo-violin music. Plus album reviews, lessons, and more. Includes over 160 minutes of video lessons, demonstrations, and reviews.

Featured Songs

Small Town - John Mellencamp

Bistro Fada - Stéphane Wrembel

Crazy - Willie Nelson

October Harvest - Sean McGowan

Away in a Manger - Traditional, arr. by Doug Young

Deck the Halls - Traditional, arr. by Sean McGowan

In This Issue

IMPRESSIONIST GUITAR
StĂ©phane Wrembel creates a new instrumental blend from Django-style swing, modern jazz, rock, and world music. By Jeffrey Pepper Rodgers.

THE WILLIE WAY
An 80th-birthday tribute to the one-of-a-kind songwriting of Willie Nelson. By Adam Levy.

COLLECTOR QUALITY AT BARGAIN PRICES
You don’t need to win the lottery to afford a vintage guitar. Look past the popular models and eras to find a guitar priced comparably to new instruments. By Walter Carter.

ACOUSTIC CLASSIC
Small Town. Words and music by John Mellencamp.

PRIVATE LESSON
Bluegrass Soloing: Versatile flatpicker Tim May on targeting chord tones and practicing strict alternate picking. By Scott Nygaard.

NEW GEAR
Alvarez-Yairi Masterworks DYMR70SB: A slope-shoulder dreadnought that’s traditional, but not old-fashioned. By Adam Levy.

Andrew White Freja 1022: Jumbo acoustic-electric from the luthier’s new Korean-made line is smart, modern, and sonically versatile. By Adam Perlmutter.
Headway EDM-1 and EDB-2: Two tiny acoustic preamps deliver transparency and flexibility. By Doug Young. 

IN THE STORES

PLAYER SPOTLIGHT
Pharis and Jason Romero: Old-time duo creates beautiful instruments, timeless songs, and sublime harmonies. By Paul Kotapish.

SONGCRAFT
Writing Bluegrass Songs: How Kathy Kallick writes songs that fit with—and extend—the tradition. By Jeffrey Pepper Rodgers.

THE BASICS
Carter-Style Embellishments: Add flourishes like hammer-ons, pull-offs, and subtle melodic variations to melodic bass lines. By David Surette.

HOLIDAY SHOPPING GUIDE

SHOPTALK
Healdsburg Guitar Festival 2013: A report from North America’s premier custom-guitar festival. By Teja Gerken.
PLAYLIST

WEEKLY WORKOUT
Single-Note Bach: Find new melodic and harmonic pathways on the fingerboard by exploring Bach’s solo-violin music. By Scott Nygaard.

WOODSHED
Open-String Chords: Add open strings to familiar chord voicings to create lush sounds and motion within chords. By Sean McGowan.

GREAT ACOUSTICS
1981 D’Aquisto Flattop. By Peter Ilowite.