Duck Baker is considered to be one of today s finest fingerstyle swing guitarists. In this lesson he teaches the basics of how to put that "swing" in to your playing. This is not a lesson for beginners. Duck presumes that you can already fingerpick using an alternating bass technique in the style of Mississippi John Hurt or Chet Atkins. Duck shows you how to expand this style and take it to a different level so that you can fingerpick swing tunes. Along the way he explains and explores rhythm chords and changes that you will need to incorporate in to your playing. Four well known tunes from the swing repertoire are taught and the arrangements are fully explained phrase by phrase. Each arrangement is then illustrated on a split-screen that clearly shows what each hand is performing. This lesson will help you develop your own individual technique for playing fingerstyle swing guitar. Titles include: Redwing, I Got Rhythm, Bei Mier Bist Du Schoen and Never Swat A Fly. 88-min video / Level 2 / 24 page tab/music booklet
About the Actor
Duck Baker was born Richard R. Baker IV in Washington, DC in 1949 and grew up in Richmond, Virginia. His teenage years were devoted to playing the rock and blues bands before becoming interested in fingerpicking in local coffeehouses. Ragtime pianist Buck Evans was a major influence on Baker's developing interests, which by the time he moved to San Francisco in 1973 included rags, blues, old-time country, Cajun, bluegrass and New Orleans jazz. This variety inspired the title of his first solo record, "There's Something for Everyone in America," in 1976. During the next four years, Baker recorded four more solo records, including one devoted to swing, one to modern jazz and one to Irish and Scottish tunes, and appeared on nine others. He also wrote a book of fiddle tune arrangements and toured incessantly throughout America, Canada, Europe and Australia. He changed address almost as constantly, finally winding up in Europe for most of the '80s. He returned to San Francisco in 1987 and finally to Virginia in 1991. Most of his more recent solo recordings have featured his own compositions, an aspect of his work that has drawn particular praise from other guitarists. If Baker's insistence on studying and performing so many facets of folk and related music, from medieval European carols to avant-garde jazz, have made him somewhat difficult for the press to categorize, he certainly has earned the respect of his peers. A check list of musicians with whom he has been associated professionally (in performance or on records) would include blues man Charlie Musselwhite and Jerry Ricks, bluegrassers Tim O'Brien and Dan Crary, traditionalists Ali Anderson and Brian MacNeil, new music icon John Zron, rock legend J. J. Cale, and jug band king Jim Kweskin. Duck Baker has been a seminal figure and influence in the bringing of Irish traditional music to the guitar. Baker is one of those rare musicians who doesn't draw upon the repertoire of his chosen instrument for musical raw material, but rather finds ideas in the broader musical stream, and shapes them to the sensibilities of the guitar. From the application of that talent comes his acknowledged success at translating Irish fiddle, pipe, and harp music for the guitar. His memorable but not widely distributed 1980 album Kid on the Mountain outlined a stylistic approach that eschews any cosmetic prettiness of tone, and focuses rather upon the possibilities of stark, open harmonies and complex interwoven bass lines. That album first introduced to many guitarists in America viable arrangements of some essential Irish tunes, a few of which include "The Blarney Pilgrim," "Morgan Magan" and "The Duke of Fife's Welcome to Deeside." Though that album is long out of print, many of the landmark arrangements found there have been reissued on various CD collections.