Lesson Plan

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Lesson notes

Poor Boy is a basic blues tune that John Fahey adapted from the playing of Bukka White. It is in Open D Tuning and Fahey played this using a lap steel approach. This means his normal dreadnought guitar but on his lap with a steel tone bar, similar to the way he played his Kona Hawaiian guitar, which he usually kept in Open G. This lesson is based on the way he played it on his album The Transfiguration Of Blind Joe Death.

First we take a look at playing it using standard bottleneck technique but then address the lap steel approach as well. You do not need a solid tone bar for this, your bottleneck will do fine, you just have to work on holding it comfortably with your thumb, index, and middle fingers.