Skeptical Christmas Fingerstyle Guitar:Plain and Fancy
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Another fingerstyle guitar Christmas book? Does the guitar world really need it?
ABSOLUTELY. The subtitle says it all: Plain and Fancy. Every carol in this book has been arranged at THREE DIFFERENT PLAYING LEVELS.
Why? (1) Because you don’t have the time around the holidays to struggle with arrangements that are too far ABOVE or too far BELOW your playing level. (2) And the shelf life for this music is about 30 days, so it may not be worth taking the time to completely master a particularly difficult arrangement.
LEVEL 1 arrangements are the simplest. You Cousin Bob could do them. Well, let me back up. If Cousin Bob knows his basic chords and if he’s willing to read through a little introductory section called Fingerstyle Guitar 101, then he’ll have the reindeer tapping their toes in no time. (Do they have toes?)
(Actually, let me back up again. If Cousin Bob is looking for reindeer and Santa songs, he won’t find them here. These are traditional Christmas carols, with long and venerable histories, the kind you sang in church when you were growing up, along with several festive ditties for the New Year.)
LEVEL 2 arrangements build on the Level 1’s, with the same basic structure but with fancier, more interesting chords and basslines. The LEVEL 3 arrangements will probably challenge you. I say this because they challenge ME; every time Christmas rolls around, I start off playing the Level 2’s and then see how much progress I can make in resurrecting the Level 3’s.
These arrangements are perfect for church services or for casual playing. The carols have lasted so long because they are truly beautiful pieces of music. Typically I begin working them into my instrumental gigs in early December, and people really see to appreciate them. Especially at my dentist’s office.
Have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.