2017 International Fingerstyle Guitar Champion Christie Lenée views the guitar as an entire spectrum of musical possibilities. Rooted from the simplicity of seeing the guitar first as a tool for self expression, she says that one of the greatest skills to develop as a musician is to be able to “play what you hear” and speak music as a language. “To feel relaxed, fluid and connected to the instrument is like breathing… and THAT is when the magic happens.”
Christie will share creative insights about the guitar beginning at the art of listening and ear training, fundamentals of holding the instrument, how to play completely relaxed with minimal effort, and how to translate musical expressions through our hands. Other concepts include songwriting and composition approaches, right hand fingerpicking patterns with creative examples, chord progressions and harmonization, a modern approach to understanding music theory, improvisation, opening up the guitar neck and finding new chord voicings, open tunings, using harmonics and low drones, rhythmic guitar slapping, finger tapping and creating memorable guitar riffs.
This is a special workshop designed for guitarists, songwriters and composers of all levels. While it will get into some fairly advanced techniques and allow advanced players to thrive, all musicians including beginners are welcome!
This is a three part workshop.
This workshop will begin with learning guitar techniques that allow relaxation and minimal effort. Many guitarists skip technique and move straight into playing, then often develop sharp pain in the left hand from squeezing the guitar neck harder than needed, or a tense right hand from using more effort than necessary. Through a series of exercises, you will learn how to use the weight of gravity to fret the strings with minimal effort, and classical based fingerstyle techniques that can be applied to new age, pop, rock, classical, jazz, country and fingerstyle guitar. These exercises will be beneficial to anyone from beginner to professional level of guitar playing. It will teach you a series of every day tools to carry with you on your musical journey, from tapping and fingerstyle guitar to creating your own musical compositions.
In this segment you will look at the musical spectrum in block form by a series of steps. This will briefly explain sharps, flats, basic ear training and a brief introduction to music theory. PDF Handouts will be included with a description of the western musical system, plus basics on how to read guitar tablature and chord shapes. From here you will experience a series of alternate tunings from Drop D, to Double Drop D, DADGAD, to Open D and a variety of modifications. A PDF will be included with an elaborate list of tunings to use in your compositional toolbox. Many of these tunings are “non-traditional” and original to specific compositions by guitarist and composer Christie Lenée.
This is where you will have the most fun! Here you will explore left and right hand tapping guitar techniques, harmonization of melodies, percussive guitar thumps, tapping bass lines and slap harmonics. You will learn how to break down what seems to be very advanced into something simple. These ideas will enable you to incorporate new tricks into a musical form while engaging with your creativity. By the end, you should feel there is a wide-open path of new thought to your compositional and musical toolbox.
Christie Lenée is the 2017 Winner of the International Fingerstyle Guitar Competition. Her unique guitar work is often compared to Michael Hedges meets Joni Mitchell and Dave Matthews, delivering profound instrumental compositions with heartfelt, consciously uplifting songs. Christie was the pioneer for a percussive guitar tool called “The Engle” launched in 2013, being the first musician to ever record with it on her instrumental album “Chasing Infinity.” Christie’s most recent album “Stay” includes 3 symphonic instrumental guitar pieces produced by the legendary, Multi-Grammy award winner Will Ackerman (founder of Windham Hill Records). 7 other lyrical pieces are rooted in melodious fingerstyle guitar work, conscious pop vocals and transformative songs.