Video tutorial: Union station on bluegrass

Union station demonstrate bluegrass strumming

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Image 2 of 2 Bluegrass with Union Station
The fifth string is muted by your third finger on all of the G major chords, apart from at bar 4 which is on the G7. Pay close attention to the marked accents, without which this part will sound a little dull. If possible, use your thumb for the F# bass note in bar 14.

Union Station gained international recognition following the release of the Coen brothers cult movie O Brother, Where Art Thou?, in which guitarist/mandolin player Dan Tyminski became the singing voice of actor George Clooney.

The band played the parts of The Soggy Bottom Boys in the film, and their version of the folk song Man Of Constant Sorrow became an instant hit. The band have since toured regularly with Alison Krauss.

In this guest lesson, we've tabbed the basic bluegrass strumming style as demonstrated by Tyminski himself. When you go through the tab, don't worry about exactly how many strings you're hitting with each strum. Think of the strings as having three areas: lower, middle and top. These 'areas' then become your drum kit, kick drum (lower), hi-hat (middle) and snare (top). The main accents in most rhythms will appear on the kick and snare, with the hi-hat quietly chugging away to maintain the momentum.

More infomation is available on the Alison Krauss and Union Station website.

Click here for full-sized tab.


Video: union-station-bluegrass-strumming.flv