Tag Archives: C6 Steel Guitar

Big Sounding Chords for the C6 Neck

There’s nothing like a nice, full, big-sounding chord that is played on the C6 neck:  Combine with sustain from the volume pedal, some reverb, and a touch of vibrato and you’ve got the ingredients for some killer chordal recipes.

Below is a diagram for some big sounding chords on the C6 neck…

C6Chords-BigSound-Root10thString
CLICK ON IMAGE FOR LARGER/PRINTABLE VIEW

These all have their root notes on the 10th string (7th string as well), allowing a player to move up and down the fretboard to change chords within a progression.  I have included the Nashville numbering system for these chords to help a player better understand how these chords relate to each other.

To pick these, I suggest using the thumb for the 10th string, and the index and middle fingers to grab notes on the other strings: better yet, hit the 10th string note first, then use the thumb to pick strings 7-5, and the index and middle fingers for strings 4&3.

Experiment with these chord voicings, and enjoy the benefits of the C6’s frequency range.  These voicings can sound like an organ or keyboard, and can really add some sizzle to a tune!

Happy Halloween!
Happy Halloween!

For more on C6 chord voicings, or how to pick these chords, visit these pages:

Bluesy Chord Voicings for the C6 Neck

Thumb Strum – Chordal Picking Technique

Thumb Strum – Chordal Picking Technique

This is one of my favorite picking techniques, and is wondrous on the C6 neck. Its main function is to use the thumb to quickly strum multiple notes and provide a thicker chordal sound. When done correctly, the group of notes should sound similar to a guitar player strumming a chord with their pick.

This technique is best utilized with a note played on top with the middle finger, or the middle and index fingers. The combination of the thumb and other fingers allows a large chord voicing that can really expand a player’s chord arsenal.

The thumb will begin on the lowest string, and then will pick the group of notes simultaneously by strumming forward. At the same time this done, the other finger(s) will pluck its appropriate note.

Here is a diagram that displays a few chord voicings on the C6 neck with this technique:

ThumbStrumChordPickingTechnique
CLICK ON DIAGRAM FOR LARGER/PRINTABLE VIEW

Further enjoy the benefits of this picking style by letting the thumb’s notes sustain, and using the middle finger and knee levers to add melodic texture for higher notes above this, in the same position. This concept can be a gateway into the world of chord-melodies on the pedal steel!


For more on picking and blocking, visit these pages…

How to Practice Right Hand Blocking on Pedal Steel Guitar

What is Right Hand Blocking on Pedal Steel Guitar?

Picking (or Right Hand Blocking) for Six-String Guitar Players

Bluesy Chord Voicings for the C6 Neck

Everyone loves the sound of a nice, thick, warm-sounding chord voicing…whether they know it or not.  Luckily for us pedal steel players, the C6 neck can provide ample amounts of these chordal sounds.

The C6 neck, with its beefy low end – and intuitive, intervallic layout – is a perfect vehicle for voicing chords that can make ears tingle.  The 10th string rivals a bass guitar’s frequencies…and when combined with some higher end, it can really bring out a chord that sounds like a plethora of keyboard, bass, guitar, and pedal steel.  Not many instruments have the sonic and frequency capabilities of the pedal steel.

image

Below are three different voicings for a Dominant 7 chord, which can be used in many blues, jazz, and rock n’ roll settings.  They are best used interchangeably, and a player can quickly switch between the three to produce nice harmonic variety — the highest notes will provide some listening variety.  They are in the same position, so practicing/switching the grips is the key to playing these.  (Click on the diagrams for a larger image).

Voicing #1

C6-Dom7BluesChordVoicings-1

They are relatively straightforward: all have a constant use of the 10th string to provide our root note (these are for an F chord), and all of them use three fingers.  Not all of these voicings contain the b7th note of the chord, but they imply this type of tonality, and when played in a band or musical setting they are often enough to get this sound across to the listener.

Voicing #2

C6-Dom7BluesChordVoicings-2

If you are playing some blues in the key of F, then moving this position to the 10th fret can provide the IV7 chord, and playing it at the 12th fret can provide the V7 chord.  Experiment with these grips/voicings, between the three positions, for some hip chordal sounds!

Voicing #3

C6-Dom7BluesChordVoicings-3


Click below for more practice tips and ideas…

Practicing Pedal Steel

C6 Neck – F Lydian Scale – 8th String Root Position (Right/Vertical)

Here is a scale diagram for the F Lydian scale on the C6 neck.  The position begins with the root on the 8th string, and moves in a right/vertical direction.

C6-FLydianScale-8thString-RightVertical

This can help in visualizing this particular pocket of the fretboard, and can also help in memorizing the notes of the scale and the fretboard.

You can click on the image (on the attachment page too) to get a better view of the diagram.  Enjoy!

C6 Neck – F Lydian Scale – 8th String Root Position (Vertical)

Here is a scale diagram for the F Lydian scale on the C6 neck.  The position begins with the root on the 8th string, and moves in a vertical direction.

C6-FLydianScale-8thString-Vertical

This can help in visualizing this particular pocket of the fretboard, and can also help in memorizing the notes of the scale and the fretboard.

You can click on the image (on the attachment page too) to get a better view of the diagram.  Enjoy!

C6 Neck – F Lydian Scale – 6th String Root Position (Right/Vertical)

Here is a scale diagram for the F Lydian scale on the C6 neck.  The position begins with the root on the 6th string, and moves in a right/vertical direction.

C6-FLydianScale-6thString-RightVertical

This can help in visualizing this particular pocket of the fretboard, and can also help in memorizing the notes of the scale and the fretboard.

You can click on the image (on the attachment page too) to get a better view of the diagram.  Enjoy!

C6 Neck – F Lydian Scale – 9th String Root Position (Left/Vertical)

Here is a scale diagram for the F Lydian scale on the C6 neck.  The position begins with the root on the 9th string, and moves in a left/vertical direction.

C6-FLydianScale-9thString-LeftVertical

This can help in visualizing this particular pocket of the fretboard, and can also help in memorizing the notes of the scale and the fretboard.

You can click on the image (on the attachment page too) to get a better view of the diagram.  Enjoy!

C6 Neck – F Lydian Scale – 10th String Root Position (Right/Vertical)

Here is a scale diagram for the F Lydian scale on the C6 neck.  The position begins with the root on the 10th string, and moves in a right/vertical direction.

C6-FLydianScale-10thString-RightVertical

This can help in visualizing this particular pocket of the fretboard, and can also help in memorizing the notes of the scale and the fretboard.

You can click on the image (on the attachment page too) to get a better view of the diagram.  Enjoy!

C6 Neck – F Lydian Scale – 10th String Root Position (Vertical)

Here is a scale diagram for the F Lydian scale on the C6 neck.  The position begins with the root on the 10th string, and moves in a vertical direction.

C6-FLydianScale-10thStringVertical

This can help in visualizing this particular pocket of the fretboard, and can also help in memorizing the notes of the scale and the fretboard.

You can click on the image (on the attachment page too) to get a better view of the diagram.  Enjoy!

C6 Neck – F Lydian Scale – 10th String Root Position (Left/Vertical)

Here is a scale diagram for the F Lydian scale on the C6 neck.  The position begins with the root on the 10th string, and moves in a left/vertical direction.

C6-FLydianScale-10thString-LeftVertical

This can help in visualizing this particular pocket of the fretboard, and can also help in memorizing the notes of the scale and the fretboard.

You can click on the image (on the attachment page too) to get a better view of the diagram.  Enjoy!