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These are the liner notes to the 2010 Harvey Reid CD "Capo Voodoo:Solo Guitar." They do not exist anywhere else, and contain a lot of valuable information about how the partial capos were used, and for the first time ever they reveal what guitars were used on each track. The year refers to the recording date, not the date of release.

Read the rave review of this CD in Premier Guitar Magazine.

Hear the individual tracks BUY NOW

Capo
Track
Comments
Year Tuning

0 2 2 2 0 0

1- Suite in F:

For the Duchess- Part 1

(H. Reid)

The first serious piece I ever wrote in the Esus capo configuration, this suite draws from the celtic and baroque music I was listening to in the summer of 1982. I recorded a version on my 2nd LP in 1984 (with a 2nd capo which put it in F- hence the name), and thought I could do it better when I made my Solo Guitar Sketchbook CD. It is played here in E, with a Shubb c7b capo, but the Third Hand Capo is shown because the piece was originally written and recorded with one.. [Fingerpicks] (1984 Taylor 810 cutaway) Buy the Transcription/TAB or Buy All 3 parts for $4.95

1988
Standard tuning

0 2 2 2 0 0

 

1- Suite in F:

For the Duchess- Part 2

(H. Reid)

This part has some very nice moving bass lines, which are typical of the Esus configuration, unlike DADGAD tuning, which it resembles. Scales generally still lie within a 4 fret range, and it is possible to play flowing melodies in the treble with moving bass lines, with an open-tuning-like resonance. I have been hooked on this combination for years. [FIngerpicks] (1984 Taylor 810 cutaway) Buy the Transcription/TAB 1988
Standard tuning

0 2 2 2 0 0

 

1- Suite in F:

For the Duchess- Part 3

(H. Reid)

This is the hardest part of this suite, and one I really can’t do without fingerpicks. It takes of advantage of the harp-like scales that become available in this capo configuration. This suite was written and recorded back when the Third Hand was the only partial capo, so it does not use any notes behind or next to the capo. All 3 parts can be played with any Esus type or universal partial capo. [FIngerpicks] (1984 Taylor 810 cutaway) Buy the Transcription/TAB 1988
Standard tuning

1 1 1 0 1 1

 

4- Für Elise

(L. Beethoven)

I took this note-for-note from a basic piano book, and did not have to change anything to fit the guitar. I located the other published arrangements of this and discovered that they did change some notes. It's nice to play Beethoven right. The E-minus effect is lovely to my ears. Open Eb tuning. [Bare finger] (1984 Taylor 810 cutaway) Buy the Transcription/TAB 1989

Open Eb tuning

Eb Bb Eb G Bb Eb

0 2 2 2 0 0

 

5-Arkansas Traveler

(Trad.)

There are not many people who flatpick fiddle tunes solo, and the capo offers to my ears an additional and vital sustain and resonance. Once again, the scales are all standard tuning, and you’ll also notice it can be played in 2 octaves, which people usually don’t do in DADGAD. It’s nice to hear the medium-gauge strings tuned to full pitch, and it would be hard to flatpick with tone like this with thinner strings or if they were tuned lower. I do a “faux-dulcimer” part toward the end where the melody is played on the treble strings. [Flatpick] (1984 Taylor 810 cutaway) Buy the Transcription/TAB 1992
Standard tuning

1 1 1 1 0 1

 

6- The Albatross

(H. Reid)

I invented the “A-minus” tuning in January 1980, and this remains the only piece I have ever played in it. You tune the guitar to an open Ab chord, then capo to form an Am. Not long afterward I developed the “E-minus” which is similarly based on Open Eb tuning. An earlier recording of this was the first track on my first LP in 1982, and it is back in print on the Kyser partial capo sampler CD.This is a clever way to play minor-key slide by tuning the guitar to a major chord and then using the capo to make the open strings form a minor chord- in this case Am. [FIngerpicks] (1967 Mosrite Dobro round-neck) 1989

Open Ab tuning

Eb Ab Eb Ab C Eb

0 2 2 2 0 0

 

7- Macallan’s Jig

(H. Reid)

Probably the hardest of a dozen or so fingerpicked jigs I have written in Esus over the years. I wrote and recorded it the night before the mastering session for my Fruit on the Vine CD project. Playing fiddle tunes on the guitar has become a kind of macho guitar sport, and I can’t say it often enough that I think the Esus capo (and partial capo in general) is a very important tool for allowing guitarists to get the notes, chords, rhythmic drive, and ringing tone that this music requires. (Though it often ends up in E, not a fiddle key.) You pretty much treat the guitar like a banjo, which is generally fingerpicked in an open tuning. [FIngerpicks] (1984 Taylor 810 cutaway)Buy the Transcription/TAB 1998
Standard tuning-1

2 2 4 4 4* 2

 

8- Norway Suite:

Part 3-

Farewell to Vikedal

(H. Reid)

The first serious guitar piece in the Asus (A suspended) configuration. Oddly enough, I thought of the Asus in about 1981, about an hour before Esus, and never got around to using it in my repertoire until 1998. Because the B string is tuned up a half-step, it is pretty hard to get used to. The capo forms an A chord, but the tuning sharps the 3rd to a 4th, giving a lot of the same haunting drones, modal chords & flowing scales that Esus offers, but a musical 4th higher. [FIngerpicks] (2000 Larrivee C-10 cutaway) 2000

E-A D-G-C-E

B string sharped to C

0 2 2 4 5 4

 

9- Wildwood Flower (Trad.)
This somewhat convoluted 3-capo setup showed up on my first LP "Nothin' But Guitar" in 1982, and was an early attempt to make the guitar into a big dulcimer by imitating Open C tuning. (CGCGCE with a capo 4 is the same as this.) I was using pretty heavy strings and a Herco heavy flatpick, but still got some of the dulcimer vibe and stole some of its melodic technique on the high E string. I also cross-picked the melody in a lower octave, which is not dulcimer-like at all. I don’t think I ever performed this one, and just worked it up for the recording session. Back then I was just playing bars, and this isn't really barroom material. The version shown here uses a Shubb c8b and a modified Woodie's G-Band Model 2. In 1981 I did it with 3 Third Hands. Boy what a sight that was on the fingerboard. [Flatpick] (1975 Gallagher Doc Watson model) 1981
Standard tuning

5 5 7 7 7 5

 

10- The Unknown Soldier (H. Reid)
This is essentially what used to be called an “air,” and I often play it in unison with a fiddler. With the double capo it puts the melody pretty high up, and the overall effect is sort of like a small harp. Some of the scale passages are also played harp-style. I wrote this on the 6-string banjo, and re-recorded it for my Artistry of the 6-String Banjo CD, which is available on iTunes and many other digital download services. I like it on both guitar and banjo. [Bare finger] (1992 Larrivee L5-05) Buy the Transcription/TAB 1993
Standard tuning

0 0 2 2 2 2*

 

11- Johnson’s Blues (H. Reid)
This is a sneaky one, and an unreleased cut I found on an old work tape. If you tune the high E string down to D, then capo the “Half-Open A,” the guitar then sounds an open A chord. But when you put a slide across the top 4 strings it works just like a real open tuning. This piece is a small tribute to bluesman Robert Johnson, who used G and A tunings a lot and often played slide in them. The top 4 strings feel like an open tuning, but the bottom 5 play normally, so you can chord and play bass runs just like standard tuning. It’s a real quick way to get an open tuned Delta blues sound with a slide. (Early 1970's round-neck metal-body Dobro) [FIngerpicks] 1994
E A D G B D (high E string dropped 2 frets)

0 2 2 2 0 0

 

12- Hard Times, Come Again No More (S. Foster)
This is a 2010 re-recording of an arrangement I first released on 12-string in 1994 on the Chestnuts CD. I made another 6-string version in 2006 for the CD that went in the book “Capo Inventions” since so few people play 12-string and so many people know this song. Not to belabor the point, but the melody works great in 2 octaves, and has nice chordal and bass line support, along with the ringing resonance that partial capos are all about. Slow airs and soaring melodies like this work extra well with the capos. [Bare finger/nails] (2004 Dana Bourgeois JOMC cocobolo) Buy the Transcription/TAB 2010
Standard tuning-1

0 0 2 2 2 0

 

13- Slipped Through My Hand (H. Reid)
This piece has a long history– it started as an instrumental when I needed a 12-string piece for my first LP in 1982 and I recorded a version that was pretty much the guitar breaks to a song I had written. I re-recorded it in 1983 with vocals and a viola on my 2nd LP, then re-did this version in 1989 with my new Taylor 12-string, and even releaed a live vocal version from 1985 on a compilation. It’s just standard tuning down 3 frets with the capo forming an A chord. The thing that makes it work is a tricky right-hand thing I do where I play a Scruggs roll with 3 fingers against an alternating bass on the thumb. (1987 Taylor maple jumbo) [FIngerpicks] 1989
Standard tuning-3

7 7 9 9 9 7

 

14- The Lucky Penny (H. Reid)
I have done quite of bit of “faux-frailing” over the years, both on guitar and 6-string banjo. I wrote this piece for the Fruit on the Vine CD and it has been out of print for a while, though quite a number of my other pseudo-frailing pieces are around. It’s unusual in that it is in jig time. I do this right-hand thing with 3 fingerpicks and a bare thumb. You could do this on guitar, but the high notes really pop on the banjo, and I doubt it would work very well on guitar. [FIngerpicks w/ bare thumb] (1987 Deering custom Maple Blossom MB6) 1998
Standard tuning

0 2 2 2 0 0

 

15- Red in the Sky, Blood on the Water (H. Reid)
This is one of my favorite Esus pieces, and I play it often. I wrote it on Thanksgiving Day in about 1993, and though the original version (from Circles CD) and the live version from 1996 are fine, I like the way I play it now, and it sounds a lot richer to my ears than those versions. It pleads again the case that the partial capo should be of interest to classical guitar people. You get the counterpoint, but you also get that warm sustain and ringing drone effect underneath it. [Bare finger/nails] (2004 Dana Bourgeois JOMC cocobolo) Buy the Transcription/TAB 2010
Standard tuning-1

1 1 1 0 1 1

 

16- Sly Damsel Serenade (H. Reid)
This is a younger brother to the Albatross, 29 years younger. You tune to Eb minor, capo to E major, and then play in Em. If you tune to a minor tuning you really miss having major chords, which I can get anywhere I put the slide. [Bare finger/nails] (2000 Chrysalis Damsel) 2009

Open Eb

Eb Bb Eb G Bb Eb

0 2* 2 2 2 2

 

17- Camptown Races/ O Susannah (Foster)
This was remastered from the Steel Drivin’ Man project from 1991. I keep meaning to work up more stuff in this wonderful tuning. You drop the A string 2 frets to G and then capo the top 5 strings. You get a choice of 2 big bass notes under the C chord this way when you play in G position. [Fingerpicks] (1987 Taylor maple jumbo) 1992
Standard tuning-3, with A string dropped 2 more to Eb

0 2 2 2 0 0

 

18- Prelude: From the Minstrel’s Dream (H. Reid)
This is a 1990 re-recording of just the first section of a 23-minute Esus piece of mine called the Minstrel’s Dream. It’s probably my best counterpoint piece ever, and I wanted it to be in this collection, even though it is not hugely different in style and mood from track 2 or track 15. I have tuned down a half-step since about 1985, since I like to sing in Eb and I like the slightly darker sound. [Bare finger/nails] (1990 Taylor 810 custom cutaway) Buy the Transcription/TAB 1990
Standard tuning-1