In this fingerstyle guitar lesson we're learning a slightly simplified version of the classic fingerpicking song Freight Train.
Freight Train was written by Elizabeth Cotten in the early 20th century and is very often taught to people who are new to fingerstyle guitar. The song has a constant bass line running throughout with a strong, yet simple, melody line playing simultaneously. This makes it a great starting point for learning how to play more complicated fingerstyle songs.
Let's start learning how to play Freight Train!
- Key - C major
- Tuning - standard
- Tempo - moderate
- Difficulty - beginner - intermediate
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Freight Train Guitar Lesson
The key thing to remember as you're learning this song is that you're always alternating between your thumb playing the bass note of the chords and your first finger playing the G string. The melody line is then played with your 2nd and 3rd fingers. This runs throughout the whole piece.
Want to learn more fingerpicking songs of a similar difficulty?
Want to learn some fun fingerstyle arrangements of famous songs?: Can't Help Falling In Love (Elvis Presley), Take Me Home, Country Roads (John Denver), Don't Look Back In Anger (Oasis), Ticket to Ride (The Beatles), Have You Ever Seen The Rain (Creedence Clearwater Revival).
Alternatively you can browse the whole song catalogue: Song Lesson Library
Let me know what you thought of the lesson in the comments section below. Say what you found hard/easy, what level you're at and what your fingerpicking goals are.