Magazine article Acoustic Guitar

Let the Guitar Do the Talkin'

Magazine article Acoustic Guitar

Let the Guitar Do the Talkin'

Article excerpt

It's one thing to play blazingly fast Travis picking, and quite another to sing at the same time, as Joe Robinson does on "Let the Guitar Do the Talkin'," a song in which the narrator apparently captivates a concertgoer through his six-string work. (See album review on page 90.) Though this transcription is based on the album version, it's very similar to what Robinson played when he stopped by AG's offices in April of last year to film a video for our Sessions series, which you can find at acousticguitar.com/sessions.

Robinson plays "Let the Guitar Do the Talkin'" with a thumbpick and fingers. While you could play the song with straight fingerpicking, using the guitarist's preferred approach will allow you to more easily handle the speedier flourishes, like the single-note runs in bars 7-10 and 92-95, while lending a certain oomph to the bass notes.

The bulk of the song is based on Travis picking, the technique named after the country guitarist Merle Travis and adapted by players such as Chet Atkins and Tommy Emmanuel, among many others. …

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