51 Western Swing Licks Guitar Lessons by Dan Smith

Western Swing music, with its infectious rhythm and unique blend of country, jazz, and blues, has left an indelible mark on the world of guitar playing. For enthusiasts eager to delve into this captivating genre, "51 Western Swing Licks" by Dan Smith offers an invaluable opportunity to master the essential techniques and stylings that define Western Swing guitar. Through meticulously crafted note-for-note lessons, Dan Smith guides learners through a diverse array of licks, each designed to enhance their understanding and proficiency in Western Swing guitar playing.

Mastering Western Swing Techniques


Mastering vibrato is crucial for infusing notes with expressiveness and character. By learning to control the speed and depth of vibrato, players can imbue their melodies with the distinctive twang and warmth characteristic of Western Swing.

Alternate Picking

Alternate picking is essential for achieving speed and precision in executing intricate Western Swing phrases. This technique ensures fluidity and clarity in playing rapid-fire sequences, allowing guitarists to navigate complex passages with ease.

Double Stop Bends

The art of double stop bends adds richness and dimension to Western Swing licks. By bending two strings simultaneously, players can create harmonically rich sounds reminiscent of pedal steel guitar, a hallmark of the genre.

Unison Bends

Unison bends are integral to capturing the soulful nuances of Western Swing guitar playing. By bending one note to match the pitch of another, guitarists can achieve a vocal-like quality, adding depth and emotion to their solos.

Palm Muting

Mastery of palm muting is essential for shaping the dynamic range of Western Swing licks. By lightly resting the picking hand on the strings, players can achieve a percussive, muted effect, adding rhythmic punch and definition to their playing.

Benefits of Learning These Techniques

Understanding and mastering these techniques offer several benefits to aspiring Western Swing guitarists. Firstly, they provide the foundation for authentic and expressive performances, allowing players to capture the signature sound and feel of the genre. Moreover, proficiency in these techniques enhances versatility, enabling guitarists to adapt to a wide range of musical contexts and improvisational challenges. Additionally, mastering these techniques fosters creativity, empowering players to develop their unique voice and style within the rich tradition of Western Swing music.

The Importance of Performance Demonstrations

In addition to detailed instruction, "51 Western Swing Licks" features captivating performances by Dan Smith himself. These demonstrations offer invaluable insights into applying the techniques in a musical context, allowing learners to observe firsthand how each lick contributes to the overall sound and feel of a Western Swing composition. By witnessing these techniques in action, students can better understand their musical potential and how to integrate them seamlessly into their own playing.


"51 Western Swing Licks" by Dan Smith is a comprehensive and engaging resource for guitarists eager to explore the vibrant world of Western Swing music. Through expertly crafted lessons and dynamic performances, this course equips learners with the essential techniques and insights needed to master the nuances of the genre. Whether you're a seasoned player looking to expand your musical horizons or a beginner eager to dive into the rich tradition of Western Swing, these lessons offer a rewarding journey towards musical proficiency and artistic expression.

Techniques Used in "51 Western Swing Licks"

  • Vibrato
  • Alternate Picking
  • Double Stop Bends
  • Unison Bends
  • Palm Muting

About The Tutor

Tutor Profile

Dan Smith

Hailing from Manchester in the UK and studying at the University of Salford, Dan may be best known as the Guitarist and Lap Steel player in Europe’s #1 western swing band The Swing Commanders. In this outfit alone he plays up and down the country every week racking up around...

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