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Country Guitar Lesson: Two-Note Harmonizing


One of the most important musical elements that contributes to the aesthetic of traditional country guitar playing is the use of two-note harmonizations. These two-note harmonizations, often called double-stops, can be heard in almost every classic country recording ever produced.


In this online guitar lesson, ArtistWorks electric country guitar instructor and one of Nashville’s most sought-after session musicians, Guthrie Trapp, teaches how to begin appropriately incorporating two-note harmonies and double-stops into your playing in the context of a country shuffle in C major. He illustrates how double-stops not only complement and enrich melodies but also assist in outlining the song’s chord changes and can create beautiful voice-leading lines.


LEARN MORE: Want to learn how to play country guitar from a master musician like Guthrie Trapp? Try some free online guitar lessons now!


“Incorporating double-stops into your soloing might feel a little bit intimidating at first,” Guthrie explains. “But, these double-stops all come directly from our fundamental chord shapes. As we work through the solo on this shuffle, we’ll see how these chords are all mapped out on the fretboard.”


What is a double-stop?

In simplest terms, a double-stop is the act of playing two notes simultaneously on a stringed instrument. In fact, this technique can be used on instruments ranging from guitar to bass, mandolin, banjo, violin, viola, cello, and beyond.


In country music and country guitar playing, double-stops are omnipresent. However, the intervals of the two-note pairings that are most commonly heard are major and minor thirds and major and minor sixths. When crafting your own solos and melodies in the country style, focus on incorporating double-stops that feature those intervals in particular.


“Focusing on your chord shapes as you improvise will really change everything for you,” explains Guthrie. “Because I learned my chord shapes and mapped them out on the fretboard early on, I’m able to outline the chord changes of the song and bring in double-stops, arpeggios, and more seamlessly into my solos.”


To learn more about double-stops and how to incorporate them into your licks and improvisations, dive into this online guitar lesson from Guthrie Trapp:


Two-Note Harmonizing with Guthrie Trapp:




Have you always wanted to learn how to play country guitar? Through our comprehensive guitar lessons online and Video Exchange Learning platform here at ArtistWorks, you can learn from internationally renowned players, like Guthrie Trapp, and get personal feedback on your playing.


Guthrie’s course starts with the basics and teaches everything from beginner guitar to advanced performance techniques, classic country tunes, improvisation methods, and beyond. So, whether you’re a beginner, intermediate, or advanced player, all levels are welcome and all students will grow and improve their skills as guitarists and musicians.


Sample some free music lessons here and see what makes ArtistWorks courses some of the best online music lessons around!



Guthrie also has two guitar courses that are now available at our sister company, TrueFire:


“Roots Recharge: A Genre-Bending Masterclass in Artistic Soloing”

“In The Jam with Guthrie Trapp”


These courses are both great supplements to his curriculum at ArtistWorks. Click the links above to learn more!



Guitar Lesson: Opening Up the Neck Using Triads with Guthrie Trapp

Bluegrass Guitar Lesson: The 3 Shape Method with Bryan Sutton

The Top 4 Techniques for Country Guitar Soloing




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