Howdy, !

Shady Grove in the Style of Doc Watson

Lesson ID: A0110

In this guitar lesson, I’ll teach you how to play the traditional Appalachian folk song “Shady Grove” in the style of Doc Watson. First we’ll go over the chord progression and a strumming pattern that you can play behind your vocals. Then I’ll teach you two variations of the instrumental break — the first instrumental break will mix a nice melody line with strumming and the second instrumental break will sound more like a bluegrass flatpicking guitar solo.

Lesson Overview

Basic Rhythm

Video Start Time Lesson Topic
00:00 min Chord Progression
00:45 min Strumming Pattern
01:18 min Alternating Bass Notes
03:42 min Progression with Vocals
05:18 min Song Structure

Member Content

Log in or register to learn the basic rhythm!

Melodic Rhythm

Video Start Time Lesson Topic
00:00 min Melodic Rhythm Example
00:47 min Measures 1 through 4 – Breakdown
03:49 min Measures 5 through 8 – Breakdown
08:00 min Practice Along with Me
08:39 min Instrumental Breaks and Song Structure

Member Content

Log in or register to learn the melodic rhythm!

Flatpicking Solo

Video Start Time Lesson Topic
00:00 min Flatpicking Solo Example
00:52 min Measures 1 through 4 – Breakdown
03:24 min Measures 5 through 8 – Breakdown
04:52 min Practice the First Half
05:54 min Measures 9 through 12 – Breakdown
07:10 min Measures 13 through 16 – Breakdown
08:53 min Practice the Second Half
09:41 min Practice the Full Flatpicking Solo

Member Content

Log in or register to learn the flatpicking solo!

Backing Track

Member Content

Log in or register to watch the jam along video!

57 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Tim Miller
Tim Miller(@tim)
5 years ago

Such a great lesson Devin. Thanks for the easy to follow tablature and instruction.

Ron
Ron(@ron)
5 years ago

As you can probably tell from my profile picture, this one is right down my alley : ) Very nice arrangement. I can’t wait to learn it this week.

Curtis
Curtis(@curtis)
5 years ago

The picking over the F major part is tricky but I finally got it. Thanks Devin! Nice lesson here.

info
info(@infoyounggloves-co-uk)
5 years ago

Love this song and it’s taught brilliantly.
Thanks so much, one slight request I’d love it played through in total with vocals so I could jam along.
Super work though ?

info
info(@infoyounggloves-co-uk)
5 years ago
Reply to  Devin

That’s excellent. I’ve been a bluegrass fan for 30 years but in the UK it’s hard to find anyone to show you stuff. 

Your site is great ? 

Thanks so much for your reply means a lot ?

olivier.buonanno
olivier.buonanno(@olivier-buonannoorange-fr)
5 years ago

Many thanks for this really great lesson.

Tom
Tom(@tom-tjdavisjrgmail-com)
5 years ago

Great lesson Devin! I’m going to enjoy working on this one. Looking forward to the jam along track.

Mark
Mark (@guest_536)
5 years ago

This one has been fun to work on Devin. I’m taking it to my monthly jam next week. Thanks for the lesson!

kmacdog74
kmacdog74(@kmacdog74yahoo-com)
5 years ago

The first Song that i heard “Doc”(__ years ago) do that really go me, the solo will take me some time, these Chord melody deals get me, but it’s such a great song, and you can’t ask for a better quality learning tool! I mean the way Devin teaches clearly and explains what going on in a piece, the video production is just the best! Thanks D!

Martin
Martin(@martinfan)
5 years ago

Thanks for this lesson and the practice along track. Doc Watson has been a favorite of mine for a very long time. Keep up the great work.

Tom
Tom(@tom-tjdavisjrgmail-com)
5 years ago

Thanks Devin for the jam along track. It’s a great practice aid. Your lessons are the best!

glenn.hudspeth
glenn.hudspeth(@glenn-hudspethgmail-com)
5 years ago

This is a great arrangement of Shady Grove. I’ve been playing it boom-chick-style for a couple of months, and this is exactly what I needed to take it to the next level. I really like the inclusion of the Am chord in measure 7. Most of the sources I have for this song (bluegrass fake book, a couple instruction books) don’t have it (or the F chord), but I think it adds some more color and is an improvement.

Paige
Paige(@paige)
5 years ago

Very nice thanks for the lesson

Jean Romain
Jean Romain (@guest_695)
5 years ago

Bon, je commence !
J’ai mis un chapeau pour que ce soit plus facile !
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G1K1_fbQDkY

jeanromain
jeanromain(@jeanromainbluewin-ch)
5 years ago
Reply to  Devin

Thank’s a lot ! I beginn with flat picking, and hat too !

bruno
bruno(@bscolatigmail-com)
5 years ago

Hi Devin, I joined casually your site, it is great.

bruno
bruno(@bscolatigmail-com)
5 years ago
Reply to  Devin

I have to find a cowboy hat 🙂

bruno
bruno(@bscolatigmail-com)
5 years ago

i like so much the jam track.. it is like a tour de force

Richard
Richard(@richard)
5 years ago

Devin your teaching is incredible , thanks so much . please keep the lessons coming. I would love to meet you sometime.

Noah
Noah(@noah)
5 years ago

Man your jam track is awesome! A little more work and I’ll be up to speed on it. Great lesson!

John
John(@johnmyhandymangmail-com)
5 years ago

second morning as a premium this will be my third favorite added,, so pleased with the features on your site Devin, your follow along screen tab is awesome with the AB looper! been longing to practice these bluegrass folk songs.. the lyrics and tradition/history of these folk tunes really cool..enjoying Doc Watson’s Shady Grove bless his soul .. your breakdowns are simply incredible…easy follow throughs make learning so fun easy!

John
John(@johnmyhandymangmail-com)
5 years ago

fantastic lesson Devin, I enjoyed following along with the tab!

Blackadar3
Blackadar3(@blackadar3icloud-com)
4 years ago

Morning from Alberta, Devin and Company
Just want to let you know how much fun and encouragment you are providing with your detailed and patient video and tab instruction. The various components of the songs (rhythms, lyrics, jam tracks and soloing) gives us seperate attack angles according to our needs and wishes which is really great. Your warm and kind personality rings through with your video presentation making every moment a treat to hang out with you. As Ricky Skaggs called one of his albums “Bluegrass Rules”!
Keep up the exceptional work.

charlesmanuels
charlesmanuels(@charlesmanuelsoutlook-com)
4 years ago

Hi Devin. Thanks for this great lesson. Its definitely going into my favorites for studying. Reminds me of my late father who used to play these kind of songs during my childhood. I guess that’s where my love for country/bluegrass came from. May I ask for more of these to build up my repertoire? Be blessed

John
John(@johnmyhandymangmail-com)
4 years ago

Going through all my saved favorites today and happy to say much easier second time around from weeks ago,, most saved favorites all are much easier but still follow along and scrutinize for your professional tips Devin.. really enjoy here today!

John
John(@johnmyhandymangmail-com)
4 years ago

This is very fun,,going to eventually sing /learn the lyrics..I remember reading why he wrote this,, I’m glad he had a honey before he left us too! cheers Devin!

naskorhan
naskorhan(@naskorhanlive-com)
3 years ago

Doc Watson licks always a favorite lesson to learn.

fransverboom
fransverboom(@fransverboomgmail-com)
3 years ago

Fantastic lesson ! And the jam along video is very helpfull !

cassarta11
cassarta11(@cassarta11gmail-com)
3 years ago

nice one , you get that satisfaction once you get it at the right rhythm .. the monthly payment really worth it

cassarta11
cassarta11(@cassarta11gmail-com)
3 years ago

almost complete .. not so easy to keep it on the run with this hammer .. but we get by !
nice melodie , thanks devin

cassarta11
cassarta11(@cassarta11gmail-com)
3 years ago

i like the idea to get the basic , melodic and flat picking solo.. amazing

kevinmltr
kevinmltr(@kevinmltryahoo-com)
3 years ago

Awesome lesson Devin!! Great,clear breakdown of the lesson..

John
John(@johnmyhandymangmail-com)
3 years ago

I just finger picked this and sang along in my deep frog like Tony Rice voice lol great fun and practice .very cool Doc Watson song.. really enjoyed this!

adamjbrockway
adamjbrockway(@adamjbrockwaygmail-com)
3 years ago

Thanks for all of the great lessons!

Was wondering if you ever do Black Mountain Rag?
Would love to get your take on it.

Thanks again!

frank
frank(@frankfossilcreektrading-com)
3 years ago

Thanks for the help. Great instruction.

Rex
Rex(@rexgmillergmali-com)
2 years ago

Awesome website … has been a bomb to my aging skill set ..

lpakkir
lpakkir(@lpakkirgmail-com)
2 years ago

I am big fan of bluegrass/country… although I hail from Singapore.
Devin is a gift…a trooper…a friend.
I do need to learn banjo version. Thx guy Devin
In the past I always played rock n heavy metal…but I love historical talents.. champions…still reign to date…no takers.
Devin got possibilities…my champion too. Thx bradda

Matt Dylan
Matt Dylan(@xylin6yahoo-com)
2 years ago

What a great lesson! next to Everyday Dirt this is my favorite Doc song (though there are so many to choose from) Are you a fan of Billy Stings or Molly Tuttle? it’s refreshing to see younger players keeping the tradition alive.

Matt Dylan
Matt Dylan(@xylin6yahoo-com)
2 years ago
Reply to  Devin

Thank You for the link to Browns Ferry Blues, I’m adding that to my favorites , Billy is a phenomenal talent.’While I’m Waiting Here’ (from Turmoil & Tinfoil) is my personal favorite , it has a very Glenn Campbell ‘Gentle On My Mind’ feel to it. and count me among those requesting a lesson on Molly Tuttle’s cover of ‘White Freight Liner Blues’ her cross-picking skills are second to none .Thanks again, love this site!

sandro donda
sandro donda(@sandro-donda)
1 year ago

Thanks Davin’s!

sandro donda
sandro donda(@sandro-donda)
1 year ago

great Lesson Devin! you have a very nice voice!

Gregory Peters
Gregory Peters(@greg-p)
1 year ago

Hi – So would you say this version of Shady Grove is in the key of D minor?