Summary, Episode 7:
Interview with Master Guitarist Mike Dowling, Master of American Roots, Bottleneck Blues, Ragtime and More…
Mike Dowling plays bottleneck blues guitar, fingerstyle, vintage swing, ragtime, and more with grace wit and dexterity.
Mike digs deep into the musical bag of American roots guitar, favoring the melodic Piedmont style of acoustic blues masters like Mississippi John Hurt and slide great Tampa Red.
He played guitar in Vassar’s Clements first touring band and can be heard on his Grammy-nominated “Nashville Jam”. Clements called him simply, “One of the finest guitarists there is, anywhere.”
In this episode of the Fingerstyle Guitar Hangout Podcast, Mike Dowling and I chat about:
- 2:15 Kicking off music camp with a lost guitar thanks to the airlines…
- 3:27 What guitars Mike brings on tour (including his “Mike Dowling” National signature model resonator)
- 3:56 What Mike learned by taking a luthier Course.
- 5:22 What is a resonator guitar?
- 6:33 How he gets built in reverb with “sympathetic vibration.”
- 7:55 Mike demos his bottlneck playing.
- 12:28 Mike talks about how he started guitar at age 12 after piano lessons 1 year…up to his debut as a pro.
- 16:05 Getting invited & discovered by Vasar Clements.
- 18:17 What it was like to study jazz with the jazz guitar great George Barnes.
- 19:06 A little about George Barnes’ archtop guitar – with no F Holes.
- 24:36 Mike demos “10th comping” on guitar and his unique chord method called “rhythm by code.”
- 33:48 Mike’s rythmic exercises – offbeat syncopations.
- 44:55 His newest accidental altered tuning.
- 49:10 Mike’s advice to guitarists.
- 58:15 Where can you study with Mike?
- 1:05:11 Listen to the delicious title track from Mike’s CD “Swamp Dog Blues.”
- You can find Mike Downling’s Website at https://www.mikedowling.com