Nick Forster – Country Swing Back-up Guitar

Country Swing Back-up Guitar
Country Swing Back-up Guitar

Country Swing Back-up Guitar
Taught by Nick Forster, with guest fiddle by Tim O’Brien

I see Nick Forster face to face nearly every week in my role as the official E-Town photographer (E-Town is a nationally syndicated radio show hosted and produced by Nick and his wife, Helen). It’s sort of odd seeing a younger Nick on this instructional video. His, alterego, Wendell Merchantile, is Red Knuckles and the Trailblazers hot-shot country-swing guitarist. On this video he shares some of Wendell’s secrets.

The best aspect of this tape is that Nick doesn’t try to do too much. He concentrates on the essence of swing guitar technique – walking bass chordal patterns. He does an excellent job of demystifying what seems to be a complicated playing style. While beginners may have a tough time understanding the music theory involved, even they will quickly grasp the chords. Intermediates and advanced players will also find enough here to sink their teeth into. Some of Nick’s music theory may result in light bulbs coming on in your head as you begin to see some of the connections between scales, chords, and positions on the fretboard.

While this is certainly not the longest instructional video on the planet, it is one of the most useful for anyone who is serious about understanding what makes swing-style country back-up guitar special. List price is $29.92, for more go to

This article originally appeared in VG‘s Feb. ’01 issue. All copyrights are by the author and Vintage Guitar magazine. Unauthorized replication or use is strictly prohibited.

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