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Author Topic:  Jeff Newman "Up from the Top" DVD
Phil Halton


From:
Holyoke, Massachusetts, USA
Post Posted 26 Aug 2007 1:39 pm     Reply with quote

I'm finishing up my study of Jeff Newman's beginner level "PSG Techniques" DVD, and will be ready in a few weeks to start tackling the next series "Up from the top". Can anyone give me a breakdown of what this course entails? There's not much in the way of description about the course on the Jeffran.com website.

I like his teaching style, and I don't think I can go wrong with his "up from the top" DVD. I'd just like to know in advance what it covers IN DETAIL. I'm also going through the Winnie Winston book as an adjunct to the Newman courses.

I've studied banjo with Bill Keith in numerous lessons over the years and immediately upon opening up this book I see his ingenious and concise approach to studying music from the theoretical to the practical. Bill loves music theory and its application (don't get him started on the circle of fifths unless you've got a couple hours and lots of mental energy to spare).

So, I'll be working through that book as well, but for the main course of study I still feel Newman is the way for me to go for a while. There's so much good material out there for a beginner. Its a challenge in and of itself to stay focused and not get pulled in too many directions as far as study material goes. I think that kind of "study drift" hurts more than it helps. Although, a narrow, well-chosen selection of sources is probably better than relying on a single source of information.

OK, having said all that,, any details on the "up from the top" DVD from Jeff Newman would be appreciated.
thanks listers
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Jim Kennedy


From:
Brentwood California, USA
Post Posted 26 Aug 2007 3:57 pm     Reply with quote

I have the A & B pedals portion of the course. The focus is on teaching harmonized scales and licks that can be used to get you up and running quickly. There are no minor chord scales or progressions. Just straight ahead 1, 4, 5 progressions. The songs presented are "Blues Stay Away Form Me," Storms Never Last'" and Swinging Doors." Jeff's coaching is excelent, with an emphasis on timing, learning basic scales and phrases, and ear training--Learning to recognise when a chord change is coming. The videos give you an opportunity to watch his technique, especially his right hand technique. I would also suggest getting his "The Great Right Hand Book." It was given to me by a fellow steeler. I quickly learned that proper right hand technique is essential to good playing and good tone. I teach guitar, and right hand technique is often overlooked in the guitar world. I suspect the same is true in the steel world. Much emphasis is placed on chord and scale progressions, and the right hand is overlooked. Good luck in your studies.
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Phil Halton


From:
Holyoke, Massachusetts, USA
Post Posted 26 Aug 2007 7:23 pm     Reply with quote

Interesting, the Newman course I'm finishing up (PSG techniques, a 2 hour video) in addition to basic chord positions, also teaches basic major scales both vertical(across the strings) and horizontal(across the frets). It ties it altogether with 1 song in key of C (Fort Worth sung by Ronnie Robinson) a simple I, V, 1 progression with a IV chord in the chorus. Also shows a few G7 scale runs and some alternate scale positions using D lever--that's about it.

As far as the right hand goes--I have to agree. along with this course, I also got the Newman DVD "right hand alpha" which is devoted entirely to the right hand shape, placement, palm blocking and a number of picking pattern exercises that are combined in various ways to cover lots of picking situations.

Do you feel the "up from the top" DVD goes into a bit more depth than what I've described in his PSG Techniques DVD? I'm hoping it does --its a bit expensive and it is the next course in his beginner series.

And yes, Jeff's method is very thorough--I feel like he's looking over my shoulder anticipating the next thing I'm going to do wrong--its kind of spooky, but good.
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Larry R


From:
Navasota, Tx.
Post Posted 26 Aug 2007 7:52 pm     Reply with quote

Phil, I have all of the Up From the Top courses. By far the A&B course sets the ground work for most all of the steel work you will do from now on. What you play from now on will be something you learned from the A&B course. The course also goes into 7th chord scales as well. You will learn 10 major chord phrases and 10 seventh chord phrases, all of which you will hear (or some variation of them) on recordings today. This course is probably one of the most important courses Jeff could have made.
After you finish the A&B course, I would suggest the 7th Chord Connection course. Seventh chords get you to a 4 or 5 chord and back to one. You need to know these applications in order to be effective in your playing. By using these 2 courses you can effectively shave off 5 to 10 yrs of trying to find how to play like the pros.
Knowledge is power. The quicker you can get it and learn it, the better player you'll be and the more fun you will have with it.
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John Sluszny


From:
Brussels, Belgium
Post Posted 27 Aug 2007 11:32 am     Reply with quote

Phil,you can't go wrong with Jeff Newman's stuff !
Jim,"The Great Right Hand Book"?
Is it a former version of "The Right Hand Alpha"?
Thanks.
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Jim Kennedy


From:
Brentwood California, USA
Post Posted 27 Aug 2007 12:50 pm     Reply with quote

I do not know if this is the for runner to the right hand alpha video. It was given to me by a very experienced steeler who said I couldn't go wrong using the Newman material. He gave it to me the day I bought my guitar, about 9 months ago. He told me to get on right hand technique right away and I would be a better player for the effort. Probably the best advice I ever got (as far as playing stee goes). The book is quite extensive in its explanation of right hand technique and why it is so important. Good photos of how to hold your right hand, 7 pages of tabbed exercises to develop right hand dexterity, strength, and speed. The one thing Jeff does not cover in this book is muting, or blocking. However, working on these exercises and reading threads in Forum on blocking has helped me to get a handle on blocking also.
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Rodney Garrison


From:
Montague County , Texas
Post Posted 27 Aug 2007 1:49 pm     Reply with quote

Up From The Top series is a lifetime of study.
IMO-- THE BEST VALUE OUT THERE.
Get the entire series now.
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Larry R


From:
Navasota, Tx.
Post Posted 27 Aug 2007 9:04 pm     Reply with quote

I started with Jeff's material. He teaches palm blocking which I think is what you should learn first. However I have adapted to a style of palm and pick blocking. The pick blocking came naturally to me in an effort to learn speed picking. Jeff claimed he did not know how to pick block but I think he did use it on occasion whether he wanted to admit it or not. Chances are that you will eventually tailor your own style with variations of pick and palm blocking. For the moment, stick with what Jeff teaches you, and the rest will come later.
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John Sluszny


From:
Brussels, Belgium
Post Posted 28 Aug 2007 7:07 am     Reply with quote

Jim Kennedy,thanks for the info !
I'd like to get "The Great Right Hand Book"
but it's not listed among the "Jeffran College"
courses.
Any idea where I could buy it?(publisher,store,etc...)
Thank you again.
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Jim Kennedy


From:
Brentwood California, USA
Post Posted 28 Aug 2007 9:21 am     Reply with quote

John, check your mail box.
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Jim Kennedy


From:
Brentwood California, USA
Post Posted 28 Aug 2007 9:22 am     Reply with quote

John, check your mail box.
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John Sluszny


From:
Brussels, Belgium
Post Posted 30 Aug 2007 8:28 am     Reply with quote

Sorry Jim,nothing ! Confused
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John Sluszny


From:
Brussels, Belgium
Post Posted 31 Aug 2007 11:47 am     Reply with quote

Jim,you've got mail !
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Jim Manley


From:
bremerton Washington, USA
Post Posted 2 Oct 2007 4:02 pm     Reply with quote

I bought the entire up from the top series from billy cooper and i also bought right hand alpha,peavey now ,and pedal steel guitar illustrated from al brisco at steel guitars of canada i believe that both of these shops carries all of Newmans instructionals.
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Blind_Lemon_Pledge


From:
Dallas, TX, USA
Post Posted 5 Oct 2017 8:41 am     Jeff Newman Course Material Reply with quote

Where can I get the Newman stuff? Thanks!
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Bobby D. Jones


From:
West Virginia, USA
Post Posted 5 Oct 2017 10:22 am     Reply with quote

With the passing of Jeff Newman's wife Fran the Jeffran college web site is now in the process of being rebuilt. Jeff and Fran's Grand Daughter has posted she is going to continue the availability of Jeff's material. She has posted on SGF that she is going to take it over and continue the availability of Jeffran's materials and products.

I got some of the Jeff's "Up From the top" series videos with a used steel guitar I bought about 2 years ago. No books or lessons just the videos. A&B Pedal part 1, A&B pedal part 2, F Knee lever 1 and F Knee Lever part 2. I have went through some of the videos and they are some of the best info. I have seen.

The Mel Bay E9th Steel Guitar Chord Chart Poster to me is a HAFT TO HAVE for a beginner. It shows how the chords are formed by lowering and raising of the strings.

For the last 5 years I spent a lot of time with an old band member friend. He passed away in August and I am planning those videos as my winter project now I not busy with looking after him.
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John Goux


From:
California, USA
Post Posted 5 Oct 2017 12:04 pm     Reply with quote

Jeff's Right Hand Alpha is the premiere palm blocking instructional video. Many players here swear by it.
Ironically, as the opening credits play, you can see him pick blocking a lick!
That's a lesson. PSG is not just one unified technique or hand position.
John
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Tom Mossburg


From:
AZ,
Post Posted 8 Oct 2017 12:35 pm     Up Reply with quote

I've got the whole up from the top series. I highly recommend it. You can always go back once you've been through the course and pick up something new you may you may have missed. In my opinion: However you get your right hand technique together, it is the most important part of learning and playing PSG. Newman's stuff is good and a good investment in both time and money. The Up From the Top series is probably the fastest way to become better on PSG for someone who is just starting or even an intermediate. The first course covers the AB pedals. 2nd the D lever or e lowers and the 3rd covers the F pedal or E raises.
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