scotty moore

The legendary Elvis sideman was a pioneer of rockabilly guitar, and his approach to merging blues and country influenced generations of guitar pickers. Here’s how he did it.

Chops: Intermediate
Theory: Beginner
Lesson Overview:
• Craft simple blues-based phrases that lie within the CAGED system.
• Understand how double-stops are used in rockabilly music.
• Improve your Travis picking.

Click here to download a printable PDF of this lesson's notation.

In 2016 we lost one of the most influential guitarists and unsung heroes the world has ever known. The driving force behind Elvis Presley’s first recordings, Winfield Scott “Scotty” Moore III helped shape the sound of rock ’n’ roll and inspire generations of fans. Born in 1931, Scotty caught his big break in 1954 when he was called to do a session with Elvis at Sam Phillip’s Sun Studio in Memphis. History was made that day when Elvis recorded “That’s All Right,” and for about four years, Scotty provided 6-string magic for such Elvis hits as “Heartbreak Hotel,” “Hound Dog,” and “Jailhouse Rock.”

A huge Chet Atkins fan, Scotty grew up listening to country and jazz. This blend would have a dramatic impact on his sound, as he would mix Travis picking with some ear-twisting note choices based on chords, rather than using an obvious scalar approach.

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