Here is something to think about,

Along time ago, if some guy played music like that sitting on the porch of his farm
house, then you can do it too.

Try this,

Use your imagination and think of a time long ago in the past.  Imagine an old red barn
or farm house during a peaceful time 100 years ago.

Think about an old wooden hay wagon at the edge of a corn field. Imagine an old farmer
who works the crops in his field. He was just a hard worker from a long ago simpler
time, someone from the past who could not read or write.

Now, visualize him sitting on the porch of his farm house in a rocking chair after a long
days work. He's holding in his lap an old homemade guitar that he's made out of a used
cigar box and some scraps of wood.
He's just sitting there relaxing, not thinking to hard about what he's doing. He's just
strummin' away a breezy afternoon without a care in the world. He's having fun and
entertaining himself playing music he likes and making sounds that he enjoys. Nothing
fancy about it.

Now picture this part,

Do you think if me and you went back in time and walked up to him and asked him,

"Do you know what a D chord is transposed over the major 9th?"

Do you think he would know what on earth we were talking about?

Would he even know what "music theory" was?

The answer is, No.

OK, so I don't have a DeLorean time machine, I am just making a point here,

If many of the greatest Bluesmen of the last century didn't know complicated music
theory and math, then the truth is you don't need to study or know it either. None of it.
You do Not have to learn any at all. I don't use it, and on this DVD we will not study it.   
In fact, the more music theory and math you try to learn, the farther away your music
gets from "Blues" and the more it sounds like contemporary and European music.

You do not need to learn math or music theory to play great 3 string guitar. 3 string
guitar is fun and simple. With proper instruction on how to create and play that old time
Blues era sound from early America, you will then understand how to make your guitar
make the "sounds" you want and desire to play.

If you have had a bad experience learning how to play guitar in the past, this will not be
the same.
As we progress step by step through this lessons DVD you will start to "unlock" the cigar
box guitar. After you have been taught the correct building blocks, then you will start to
understand the 3 string guitar. That is in fact the name of this DVD.  This DVD is called
"Understanding 3 string guitar."
cigar box guitar
Padron cigar boxes made great guitars, they are made of cedar and
mahogany, that also just so happens to be great tone woods.
Email me
for the latest model list  at
Old Sepia Photo circa 1891
"I live for thee"
Charlie Christian, Muddy Waters and even the great Lightnin' Hopkins,
They all played the cigar box guitar.
I have made these cigar box guitars sometimes months in a row and made nothing else,
just one after another. I have built so many of these over the years that I have lost count.
I have hundreds of photos of these guitars in all types of finishes. There is no room to post
them all, but here is a few samples.
I have made them in dark colors, light woods, 3 and 4 string, with pearl, with black,
chrome...on and on
. These are also great sounding guitars.
cigar box guitar
Maple, Mahogany, White Oak, Cedar and Hickory,

email me
for the current models at
I build guitars in both 3 and 4 string. Email me
Photo c.1890
Understanding 3 string guitar How To Play DVD
26.50 USD
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yes! anywhere in the world same price, 2.15!

Shipping in the USA (8 to 12 days) First Class
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Region "0" NSTC & PAL-DVD
Plays in all Television DVD players in the USA, Europe, United Kingdom, Australia, and Asia
It also plays in most computers with a disc drive, but it is a DVD and can be viewed on all TV's worldwide
Well, thanks for your time, If you want to watch this DVD, it's always available for sale
here. I can mail this DVD anywhere in the world. It was recorded with just a handheld
camcorder. BUT, it is a TRUE DVD and was many weeks of work in recording and
editing, you can watch it on TV. It plays on any TELEVISION worldwide, as well as most
Blu-ray players. It also plays in most computers if you have a disc drive. However, I
went through a lot of effort to make it a real DVD so you could watch it on TV and be
more confortable in your chair or on your sofa.

OK, either this DVD is for you or not, I guess I am done with the explaining. Thanks for
your time and if you have read this far, thank you. This is just real simple and fun to
play music. You can play this kind of music too!
This is an all Delta Blues and cigar box guitar CD disc recorded in honor of the 3 sting guitar.
In these recordings, I wanted to record authentic Delta Blues and Bottleneck slide cigar box
guitar as realistic as possible. The music on this Disc is played mostly on the three string
cigar box guitar. Some of the tracks have 4 string Bottleneck slide cigar box guitar, but all
of the tracks are ONLY recorded with cigar box guitars.

My goal with this album was to take the listener back to the 1880's to 1930's and relive
those Dust Bowl Ballads and Delta Blues Guitar Spirituals played on cigar box guitars. There
is NO SINGING or band and NO regular guitars.

This music is only recorded with Cigar Box Guitars.

Watch this video to hear some of the music,
~Dust Bowl & Delta Blues CD~
$14.35 USD

shipping worldwide $2.15 USD

Yes! anywhere in the world same price, 2.15 shipping!

Shipping in the USA (8 to 12 days) First Class Mail
Overseas & Worldwide (14 to 21 days) Stamped

Questions??? email
For those wondering want type of amp is best to use with a cigar box guitar,
I really mean this, it's the only amp you will ever need.
It sounds almost tube-like and has a distinct "glass like chime" and for the price,
the value cannot be beat. You can buy them for about $80 bucks in just about
any music store.
3 string guitars are very easy to play. It is much easier to learn to how play a cigar box
guitar than it is to learn how to play a regular 6 string guitar.

Delta Blues and early American Folk music that was played on these homemade guitars
was created by people who most often could not read music. Nor did they know any music
theory or what chords and keys were. Many of them could not even read the written word!

The truth is you DO NOT need to know any math, chords, or complicated music structure
to play great sounding 3 string cigar box guitar. If the people who played old time Blues
music did not know music theory or complicated math, than neither do you.

On this DVD I will explain early American music from the 1880's to the 1930's and how to
play it on 3 string guitar. These lessons teach you how to create and play old time Blues
WITHOUT using complicated math.
We are going to learn and study lessons that I have broken down in small easy to learn
step by step building blocks that we will then put together to achieve that heavenly
Old-Time Delta Blues sound.

Watch this video, you will see that vintage Blues is easy to learn and play. Slide guitar is
basically one finger guitar. Watch my fingers, there is not much movement, watch the
entire video, I will teach you how to play this exact type of music.
Nope, I'm not done with my sales pitch yet!  Not even close...
Because cigar box guitars have a naturally vintage tone, they record really well.
There is so much room for creativity when played with old tube amps, different glass
and metal slides, vintage reverbs and overdrives, the possibilities are endless!
It's easy to recreate those haunting old, lost and spooky sounds of a bygone era.
When overdriven at just the right level, cigar box guitars have such a great sound.
Listen to this video.
"Home Sweet Home"
This is the oldest known image of a cigar box instrument.
It was drawn during the Civil War and is of 2 Union Soldiers.
One awesome fellow has a Figora Cigar Box Violin. Edwin Forbes 1864
If you have always wanted to learn to play old school Blues or tried to learn how
to play guitar in the past but you've always failed to get the right sound, it was
most likely the poor instruction that hindered you from learning. All of that useless
math and science theory usually stops most people from learning guitar. That
confusing garble gives everyone headaches. You were not alone.

I remember when I was younger, I was trying to learn from some pro level
"Blues" teacher.  When he talked it sounded like he had a mouthful of marbles. He
spoke clearly, but it was all just a bunch of babble to my ears.

Needless to say I never learned a thing from his lessons.

I was Not the type of person who could grasp, "it's a G chord with this note divided
by the root and added with a minor 7th,...or it's an open F# with a suspended
9th"...and so on.

I remember thinking to myself, "How am I ever going to learn?"

I just wanted to play and enjoy guitar, I didn't want to study rocket engineering!

I found it too hard and frustrating to learn by looking at confusing fingerings or
colored dots or watching fretboard farts by some fast playing music teacher who
was using big words and fancy math.

I needed clear English!
Now flash ahead up to today;
I have been playing guitar for almost 30 years. I have spent many years studying
slide guitar, early Blues and traditional Rock. I also build and sell cigar box guitars
under the name "Red Dog Guitars." The combination of my knowledge on the
structure of how the cigar box guitar is built and the history of the music played on
these unique guitars has given me a higher understanding than most people about
slide and Blues music that is played on a 3 string guitar.

If you want to learn to play great old-time guitar with an authentic sound, the
biggest tip for success I can share is "how to hear and think" in simple terms. Most
of those pro Blues music teachers make it way too complicated than it needs to be.

This DVD is not like the other standard "hard to learn" courses that every one else

On this DVD,

NO math is involved

NO scientific music theory

NO folding and unfolding fretboard maps and wall charts

NO confusing books to balance on your knee as you try to play your guitar

This DVD is different. I will explain how to play guitar in clear everyday English. I
offer correct explanation of the techniques, how to TUNE the guitar to get a truly
authentic and vintage sound, and on your part, you will only need patience and

I also show on this DVD how to set up your guitar. I like mine to sound gritty with
a ruff-edged vintage type sound. I like it when the guitar is kind of scratchy and
sounds like it's struggling to stay in tune. It makes the music sound like an old
recording from the past.

Let's take a step back in time and listen to something vintage, then I can explain
more below.
These photos are calender photos from the early 1950's. The artist has used this
boy in about 6 or 7 similar arrangements with a cigar box violin. It must have
been something he had seen as a child.
There were lots of How to build your own Cigar
Box Amplifiers in magazines in the 50's and 60's.
This looks like a fun project.
Yes, in the 1930's even Mickey got his start on the cigar box guitar!
If you love raw, primitive and authentic Delta Blues, American Folk music or Bottleneck
slide, you will listen to this CD 100's of times. I recorded it with only cigar box guitars.
Listening to this music is like taking a journey into Americas past. Imagine walking through
an old ghost town in the 1880's, the suspense, the mystery, the whispers that you can
barley hear, there is many fantastic songs played in the Ry Cooder Paris Texas style on this

NO regular guitars and NO singing, The music on this CD is only homemade cigar box guitars.

This CD was a labor of love. I wanted to make an album that was as close as possible to the
music played in the 1880's up to the 1930's and only played on cigar box guitar.

It took me about 4 months to record and organize this music. All of the music was recorded
by me in my house with vintage amps and homemade recording gear... and of corse, my
passion to build and play, a room full of cigar box guitars.

A lot of the music was recorded in analog. It is one of the reasons it was so labor intensive.
This project was many hours worth of work in creating, recording and editing.  Recording
music with Lo-Fidelity and vintage recording gear is what gives this music a naturally
authentic tone.

Thanks for taking time to read this and listening to the videos, the album is for sale anytime,
give it a try, you will enjoy it. Thanks again, John
This item checks out for purchase thru Paypal with " Buy It Now."
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Here is a 2 string cigar box guitar made from an old broom stick and a cigar box.
If you look closely you can tell it was really well made, someone put alot of time
into building it.
This excerpt is taken from documentary about the life and times Sam “Lightnin’” Hopkins (1912-1982)
Copyright / Fast Cut Films, in association with Sunset Productions.
I have presented it here for educational and commentary purposes only in relation
to the brief discussion about of the history of the cigar box guitar.
(Copyright Law 107-Limitations on exclusive rights: Fair use section; 40)
All Copyrights for this material are the property of their respective owners.
It's well known Lightnin' Hopkins got his start on the cigar box guitar. If you
would like to hear Lightnin' himself talk about his homemade guitar watch this
short video.
Better than me typing it out, listen to the man himself telling you some of his
history with this wonderful type of guitar.
Hey you...yes YOU!  How many photos do you need to see?
I am always building these Old Timer guitars.
I can see it now, YOU...This guitar.....a I getting anywhere?
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I promise nothing....but FUN!  
Email me for the current models and price list at
I like 3 string guitars, but I also like 4 string guitars too.
The recording possibilities are endless with a cigar box guitar.
Would you like to play one? I can mail a guitar anywhere in the world.
Hey, the post man does the hard work, Let me mail one tomorrow!  
email me
for the current models and prices  at
Awaken your inner McFly and play guitar like it's Nov 5th 1955...
email me before it's too late!
I am always making these blacked out satin guitars. This 50's satin black version
is a Wild Indian 3-string guitar.
Email me for the current models and prices at