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Mandolin Players

Pick mandolin-family instruments as well as guitar? Share tips, tunes, and techniques in the mandolin group.

Members: 153
Latest Activity: Nov 13

Discussion Forum

new to the game 6 Replies

Started by Ron. Last reply by Robert Williamson Nov 13.

New mando player 4 Replies

Started by Jason Derrick. Last reply by Robert Williamson Nov 8.

Why do so many pros play the old Gibson A's? 5 Replies

Started by Janice Hamilton. Last reply by Jim Yates Apr 15.

Comment Wall


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Comment by Robert Williamson on November 8, 2015 at 7:50am


Is it normal that strings are in contact with top edge of tailpiece plate?

Comment by Robert Williamson on November 8, 2015 at 6:13am

Hee-hee I just noticed your pix, under 40 it is! ;)

Comment by Robert Williamson on November 8, 2015 at 6:10am

Jim, can believe you never heard Maggie Mae.. you must be either over 75 or under 40 :)

the top 3 non-bluegrass mandolin tunes, according to Guitar Player magazine are..

Battle of Evermore, Led Zepplin

Maggie Mae, Rod Stewart

and surprisingly...

Losing My Religion, R.E.M..

There are videos of all 10 here

Comment by Robert Williamson on November 8, 2015 at 6:04am

Found some vids on chop.. reminded me of reggae.. so i did me some googlin`

Comment by Randy Lee Hano on November 7, 2015 at 10:13pm

Been playing Mando for the past 3 years and have been enjoying it. My first Mando was an entry level Ventura A-Model. I have since moved to an Ovation Mando (USA model) that I found used. Love to play bluegrass even though I am still a novice. Just  getting out there and playing with others has helped on the learning curve. Helps that I played guitar a long time so learn the mando was a technique change. I also have an Electric Mando I use for rock bands that I sub in for.

Comment by Jim Yates on November 7, 2015 at 7:17pm

Sorry, I call it the "bird finger", I guess because it's the finger you use to "flip the bird".  Most folks seem to know what I'm talkin' about.

A chop chord is a chord played on the 2 and 4 beats of a measure, then the left hand fingers release pressure to deaden the strings and make a percussive sound.
I'm afraid I'm not too familiar with mandolin played in the style of od Stewart or Led Zep.  I have done mostly bluegrass, Irish trad, blues and jug band stuff.

Comment by Robert Williamson on November 7, 2015 at 10:44am

bird finger> bluegrass term for 2 (aka middle) ? :)

I don't even know what a bluegrass chop is tho I have seen it mentioend al lot. in last couple days.

Not particularly interested in Bluegrass, it's never been in my wheelhouse. The  original Gloriana group with Cheyanne Kimball  was probably the only country mandolin music I ever liked.  I am more into mandolin music from the likes of Rod Stewart and Led Zeppelin. Perhaps i should check out Irish mandolin.

i find it easier to do 1-3 where they call for 1 2 fingers. eg open g and c chords, can do a lot of sus chords with middle finger then this a normal technique?

7523 using p,r i,m is an incredible strain cramps ville for me

Comment by Jim Yates on November 7, 2015 at 9:28am

I most often make F as 5301 and G as 7523. The F is not a closed chord and to get the bluegrass chop, you must mute the 2nd string with the finger that frets the third string.  I make the F chord with my Pinky, ring and bird fingers, but it might be easier with the ring, bird and index.

I have seen folks who use incomplete, but effective chords F- 2301 and G- 4523.

I first started using this shape when I saw it on a Greenbriar Boys album cover many years ago.


Comment by Robert Williamson on November 7, 2015 at 8:59am

i am getting intense cramps trying to finger closed chords. especially trying to fret 2 middle strings with 2ed finger in chords like 2ed fret F and 4th fret G.

some charts show fingering with 2 middle strings fretted with 2ed finger, other show finger 2 and 3 used.   Right now i find method 1 causes cramps and method 2 causes muffled sounds. guitar techniques do not seem to very transferable here :(


Comment by Robert Williamson on November 6, 2015 at 3:05pm

eeeck must buy more capo!!

need a mandolin one..or..i could take my scroll saw and shorten the Red Plastic D'Addario capo I got free from Strings and Beyond, to fit the Mandolin. Never  going to use the plastic capo otherwise...saw saw saw..



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