Video: Warm-Up Lessons With a Fingerpicking Legend

"I'm listening to Tommy, whatever he says." So Joe Shadid tells us in his latest video above, and for good reason.

Many Reverb visitors will already know Tommy Emmanuel. The fleet-fingered fingerpicking legend has graced our site a fair few times before. He's taught us four beginner steps to fingerpicking, how to use G6 tuning, how to play Elizabeth Cotten's "Freight Train," and on a couple of occasions, he's sold gear in his official Reverb shop to raise money for guitar-playing veterans.

In previous installments of our warm-up series, Joe has asked a variety of players to show him the techniques they use to stay sharp and at-the-ready for gigs and recording sessions. Cory Wong, Orianthi, Mateus Asato, Ariel Posen—all these guitarists approach their instruments in completely different ways, and have plenty to teach players at every skill level.

As Joe continues his quest to learn from the best, Emmanuel was an inspired choice for his next teacher. While others have shared brilliant ways to employ run scales or practice specific patterns, Emmanuel puts songs first. "It's about your body and soul and your connection with the music and with the guitar and all that—it's so much deeper than just warming up," Emmanuel says. But that's not to say his warm-ups are bereft of technique.

Utilizing a trusted thumb pick—Joe decided to buy a heavy Dunlop Thumbpick—Joe follows along to Tommy's routine for a full week. What could you learn by doing the same?

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