Clawhammer Guitar
Michael Stadler

Turn your fingerpicking around ... literally! Apply this galloping old-time banjo sound to your guitar.

We'll work in G modal tuning (low-to-high-pitches) D-G-D-g-c-d, in which the 1st, 5th and 6th strings are each lowered a full-step from standard tuning, and the 2nd string is raised a half-step. It's recommended that you bring or borrow a tuner to make this change efficiently. Recording devices are encouraged. I'll bring handouts, but may run out.

NOTE: It's important that you have picking-hand nails of reasonable length and strength. Nailbiters are discouraged from trying this technique.

We'll learn about tone production using the back of the picking nails. We'll also focus on placing the picking-thumb notes on backbeats and on using plenty of hammer-ons and pull-offs with the fretting hand. We'll apply these techniques to a well-known old time song.

Michael Stadler has taught this workshop to good effect at festivals and music camps for years. He began playing music as a young child and has taught classes and private lessons on a variety of stringed instruments for decades. His clawhammer guitar playing is featured on "Clawhammer Guitar: The Collection" with Steve Baughman, Jody Stecher and Alec Stone Sweet (chosen by Acoustic Guitar magazine as one of its twenty year retrospective of Essential Acoustic Listening recordings).

His "North Country" recording features bandmates Mary Gibbons, Jon Mitguard and Paul Knight as well as Veronica Lustre, Laurie Lewis, Tom Rozum and Jim Mintun.