You Too Can Play House Of The Rising Sun With 1 Finger



One finger is all it's going to take...

You can learn how to play House of the Rising Sun on cigar box guitar with just one finger.

And yeah, you can use that finger if you want.

But here's the deal. The video for this lesson isn't even 10 minutes

In fact, I could've made it shorter than it is. 

Now, playing House of the Rising Sun with one finger is only the first step. 

That's because in this 7 minute video I show you how to:
  • play the song with one finger
  • then play the same chords and also tie in a little bit of the melody
  • then you learn how to play the chords and melody with some alternate fingerings to help you expand your use of the fret board
So let's get started already...

3 Awesome Resources To Learn Blackbird On Cigar Box Guitar


It's one of the greatest songs in history.

Now you can learn to play it on your 3 string cigar box guitar.

Blackbird by Paul McCartney is the kind of song you like to get stuck in your head. 

It's downright beautiful.

In this post I am going to:
  • introduce you to tablature (tab) and how to use it to learn this song
  • where to find tab for this song and how to download it (for free!)
  • teach you how to play Blackbird step by step in a video tutorial
  • help you with a bonus vid at the end (hint: string height can be a challenge on fretted CBGs)
Let's get started with that tablature...

Cheat Your Way Into Playing Cigar Box Guitar

Learn to play "Your Cheatin' Heart" by Hank Williams Sr.


Who's to say that cheaters never win?

This lesson is a fine example of what can be played on a cigar box guitar.

And "Your Cheatin' Heart" by Hank Williams Sr. has the kind of melody that is a clear winner for any CBG player's repertoire. 

What you're going to find here is a video lesson on how to play this country classic.

Give me 10 minutes of your time and I'll get you playing "Your Cheatin' Heart" with a slide on your cigar box guitar.

3 Ways Shane Speal Impresses The Hell Out Of Me


Shane Speal is different things to different people.

But the self-proclaimed King of the Cigar Box Guitar is undeniably this: 

one of the biggest reasons, if not the biggest, most of us are making and playing CBGs.

"Hrrumph! I've been making and playing since blah, blah, blah." someone is muttering right now. 

Good on ya, my friend. But had it not been for Shane starting: 
  • the first known website for cigar box guitars
  • a Yahoo! group devoted to makers and admirers of CBGs
  • and CigarBoxNation.com
then it's likely that many of us wouldn't have felt the ripple effect of his efforts.

That effect led so many people to grab a stick and a box and make a cigar box guitar of their own.

I didn't know who Shane Speal was until I was working for C.B. Gitty Crafter Supply for at least a year.

Had it not been for Shane's work, C.B. Gitty likely wouldn't exist, nor the market that supports the business.

This isn't some love-fest post about Shane. In fact, Shane does some things in ways that I never would.

But the clincher here is that, unlike Shane, I'm not trying to support a family while creating a niche and spear-heading the entire cigar box guitar movement. 

Shane is doing that. 

And has been for over 20 years.

What I am going to show you now, other than what's been already listed here are,

The 3 reasons why Shane Speal impresses the hell out of me.

The Quickest & Easiest Way to Play Hank Williams

The cigar box guitar doesn't have to play the blues, but I'm So Lonesome I Could Cry by Hank Williams Sr. may qualify as being sad enough.

Good ol' traditional country, with all due respect to the pop-star country sellouts of today, has some truly heart-wrenching lyrics and melodies.

Hank Williams Sr. knew how to get his point across without writing and singing about pickup trucks, girls in short shorts, and [insert name brand booze here].

Although two out of three of those aren't bad in my book...

What you'll find here is a video on how to play Hank's crooning classic I'm So Lonesome I Could Cry on your 3 string cigar box guitar and clearly my appreciation for this country music icon (and I don't really listen to country).

What's the best size cigar box for a guitar? The answer will surprise you

Glenn Watt holding cigar boxes

So you want to build a cigar box guitar but you don’t know how big the box is supposed to be?

You can’t help but notice that acoustic guitars are huge compared to cigar boxes and most of the electrics you’ve seen look to be twice the size of any cigar box you can get your hands on.

So how can you know what size cigar box to use?

What’s too thin? What’s too short? What’s not wide enough?

Well, there aren’t any hard or fast rules to making CBGs, which is part of their charm.

You can use as big or as small a box as you’d like. No matter what, you can make yourself a fully playable and totally kick-ass cigar box guitar and nearly any size box is suitable.

Here's what you're going to find below that supports that fun fact:


  • what the function of the box is
  • how the dimensions of a box can help you determine what kind of guitar you make
  • how the length of the box can affect the overall size of the cigar box guitar