How to play slide guitar like the world's greatest players

Figure 5. Sonny Landreth

(Image credit: Marco Van Rooijen)

It’s not easy to find radical new ways to play slide, but Sonny Landreth figured out that what was going on behind the slide was just as important as the stuff in front of it.

Landreth plays in open E tuning and wears his slide on his 4th finger, which enables him to use the bottleneck and simultaneously fret notes behind it. 

You’ll need to follow suit for this example, as there are some fretted notes added behind the slide, as indicated in the tab by the “1” (for 1st finger) next to the relevant note. 

Landreth frequently uses two fingers simultaneously behind the slide, but we’ve opted to keep it simple here, since this is a rather tricky technique to perform. Once you’ve gotten the hang of the technique, try playing some of your own musical ideas using more than a single digit behind the slide.

(Image credit: Future)

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Jimmy Brown

Over the past 30 years, Jimmy Brown has built a reputation as one of the world's finest music educators, through his work as a transcriber and Senior Music Editor for Guitar World magazine and Lessons Editor for its sister publication, Guitar Player. In addition to these roles, Jimmy is also a busy working musician, performing regularly in the greater New York City area. Jimmy earned a Bachelor of Music degree in Jazz Studies and Performance and Music Management from William Paterson University in 1989. He is also an experienced private guitar teacher and an accomplished writer.