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Martin Carthy: British Fingerstyle Guitar

Martin Carthy: British Fingerstyle Guitar (OV 11208)

British Fingerstyle Guitar
Martin Carthy

Stefan Grossman’s Guitar Workshop OV 11208 (Video, USA, 1993)
Stefan Grossman’s Guitar Workshop GW927 (DVD, USA, 2006)

Sleeve Notes

Martin Carthy has forged his own personal and unusual approach to fingerstyle guitar. Musician Magazine recently cited him as one of the 100 Greatest Guitarists of the 20th Century. He has developed his own tunings and right hand techniques to enable him to play British traditional folk music. This body of music is rooted in a vocal tradition of hundreds of years as well as a strong dance culture. It is not bound by any time or bar structure. The guitarist must find ways to explore, reinforce, accent and embellish these melodies.

Martin has successfully done this with the C G C D G A tuning. He plays with a heavy percussive attack reminiscent of a country bluesman and the gritty rhythm of a diatonic accordion player. He has a unique sense of phrasing and a strong emotional and atmospheric feel for his music.

In this video lesson, Martin explains in detail his playing techniques and style for seven of his most popular arrangements.


  1. Old Tom of Oxford
  2. The Heroes of St Valéry
  3. The Siege of Delhi
  4. La Cardeuse
  5. McVeagh
  6. The Harry Lime Theme
  7. Seven Yellow Gypsies