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Thread: James Hill: Duets for One

  1. #1

    Default James Hill: Duets for One

    I bought this book and began working on the first song "Freight Train". It took me about two weeks until I could play it through and only now, a few weeks later, am I able to make it sound decent. I skipped over the second song "I saw the light" because I have no desire to learn or play that one. I'm just about able to struggle through "Georgia on My Mind" after a couple of weeks but it sure is pretty for when my speed picks up and I get better.

    This seems to be a hard book but many of the songs are beautiful arrangements and seem worth the time.

    I'd like to hear about the experiences of others who have tried this book.
    Kamaka (S) Gold Label, Bonanza (C) Cherry Oreo, Pono (T) mahogany, KoAloha (T), Kala (B) Cedar top/Acacia laminate.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2016
    Woodstock NY USA


    I have been working on and off agin on I Saw the Light for 10 months now. The stretch is a killer for me. I should play it on a concert. Tried it last night on my concert resonator. Sounds cool. But I never make it all the way thru.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2017


    I've had it since it was first released, but haven't done much with it. I find this style of playing more difficult than intricate fingerpicking. Occasionally I work a little on Georgia and Don't Get Around Much Anymore. I hope I eventually get better with this style, I really like it.
    "Got a whole lot of nothing, and I watch it like a hawk." - Louis Prima, 'I'm Living in a Great Big Way'

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Stone Harbor, NJ


    I looked forward to this book when it came out several years ago. For me, it is very difficult, probably above my skills. Definitely not for beginners. If this is your skill level, it's a great resource.

    In order of age:

    Martin C-1K Concert, C Re-entrant Tuning 4/2014
    Pono MTD-CR Tenor C Linear Tuning 6/21/2016
    Ko'olau Model 100 Tenor C Linear Tuning 7/27/2018
    Kamaka HF-2 Koa Concert C Linear 6/26/2019
    Cocobolo Concert #433 C Re-Entrant 2/3/2020
    Martin S1 Soprano, C Re-entrant Tuning 3/19/2020

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Gloucester, UK


    I absolutely love this book - challenged me to learn an entirely new technique and rely on my thumb. Fantastic.

    Georgia on my mind is probably my favourite of the four or five I've learned so far - sounds incredible tuned down to Bb as well.

    The stretch on I saw the light was tough for me at first. So I played it on a baritone for a couple of weeks then went back to my tenor. Boom, seemed a whole lot easier then!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2017


    Beautiful playing prb I thought i’d nailed that tune until I heard your version. This is a fantastic book. I’ve worked through most of the arrangements and have loved it. After the Rain is my current fave - such a great song!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Honolulu, HI


    Quote Originally Posted by BBegall View Post
    I skipped over the second song "I saw the light" because I have no desire to learn or play that one.
    Would this be the Ace of Bass "I Saw the Light?"

    Edit: Disregard. I found out that it's the Hank Williams song which, okay, sounded good. Not as fun, though. ;-)
    Last edited by Just Russ; 07-12-2019 at 06:51 AM.

  8. #8


    Thank you, this look really interesting. I just ordered a copy to take on a trip this coming week.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2017
    Corvallis, Oregon


    That was really well done, Penny. I thoroughly enjoyed it!!
    Jan D
    KoAloha KCM-00
    KoAloha Opio KCO-10
    Thormahlen Yew-kulele
    Kala KA-SLNG
    Flight TUS35

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Tampa Bay, FL


    that was very nicely done.
    You can't call yourself an intermediate player anymore....
    you're playing is way superior to all but about 3 or 4 players around here, who have been playing for decades.

    Doh, I just saw your last post. yes, she is very good!
    Last edited by Nickie; 07-13-2019 at 04:20 AM. Reason: Being a dummy
    "Those who bring sunshine and laughter to the lives of others cannot keep it from themselves".

    Music washes from the soul, the dust of everyday living.

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