The road to 'Freight Train' Joe Robinson techniques

Hello enthusiasts of fingerstyle and …

Because it was suggested this morning that videos of the process would be a nice idea, I am posting this a little earlier than I had actually planned last day`s ,and while on the first day I started I thought I would post a video of steps 1 to 4 in my LL and then go all in for De Freight train now I change my mind …again like every day during this project. :roll_eyes:

And now I hope that everyone feels free to follow me in one or twenty other ways and post their steps 1, 2, 3,4 or 20+ here and later of this song ( :sweat_smile: :partying_face: :sunglasses: ) or other helpful practice steps to improve this sty so that we can learn from each other or be happy to see that you are not the only one who finds this terribly difficult to learn. :sweat_smile:

Don’t be put off by the beginning of Joe’s video…don’t be scared like me …he only shows what he can do and not what he wants to teach us directly in the video :sweat_smile:

Freight Train seems light years away to me now and I only watched it once so as not to be discouraged and just take it step by step… I practiced 3 times a day for about fifteen minutes the first week and ,

Step 1: wash after 1 day good when I started the morning on day 2, I felt like the king (of my house, but I am the only man in the house)

Step 2 : There is a little variation in the lesson and the PDF (1 or two times the rol per chord) but both are easy to learn and because the Rolling chords are very difficult (especially if you don’t know it yet or are just learning it) if you have to mute the top strings and are focused on that so I started with ‘block’ picking (all in one ) of the bottom strings and that too went very well after 1 day (I almost felt like king and queen in one because it went so easily to step 3 in just 2 days, but then I woke up) … while I also practiced the rolling chords as a warm-up before I started with step 3 and it quickly went quite well, but it turns out that step 3 really became the real work for me…

The posted video is a good average of where I am now after 10 days of hard practice… sometimes it goes completely well, sometimes a nasty string buzz because my hand is too close to the strings and sometimes not enough palm mute, a bit like in this video. …But I am already very satisfied and am already secretly dreaming of step 4 (I’ve listened to that a 2 times a day for 7(?) days now so it’s stuck in my head ) which I will start next week…

… now my video first and I hope you will be encouraged by this ,For me, as I learned and expected, just wanting to record this video was a huge step forward because I am so consciously aware of all the mistakes I make and that speeds up my process enormously…
Have fun and keep smiling :sunglasses: :sweat_smile:

Next post is the lesson where you can find further information About Joe Robinson`s lesson and



Easy Fingerstyle Lesson


Discussion and let us know your comments about Joe Robinson’s Club on February 8, 2024.

I believe it is so complete, but feel free to add more

Greetings, Rogier



Love it Rogier!! That is quite an achievement for such a short time.
The mistakes you do here and there probably sounds worse in youre own head. I found it to be a pleassure to listen too… this style of playing is so difficult, and so cool!
it is real hard to get a decent rythm going just on the upper strings. Not to mention when you have to pick rest of the strings too, in time….
i am Impressed Rogier!

Looking forward to the next one.


Hi Rogier - good going, sounding great! I’m also working towards Freight Train with Joe.
I’m finding the palm mute a struggle, I do a little finger picking already, nothing fancy but it works for simple patterns. Changing to palm muting alters the angle of my fingers and really throws me. Also I’m finding that I have to get my thumb behind the neck on my open chords (where I normally poke the thumb up to mute low E as needed). I need the extra room that playing with the thumb behind the neck gives me for the various embellishments needed.
This is a slow train :slight_smile:

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Good job Rogier, especially after that short time! sounds great! :smiley: :clap:
I want to learn this too but I haven’t started on it yet (got sidetracked with the blues course)
Thanks for sharing your progress, and the links too :sunflower:
And also it was a good reminder for me :grin:


Nice work, the regular practice is definitely paying off. Not a bad idea to have a “work in progress” video to be able to see how far you’ve got in the future.

I attended the session with Joe also. This track is on my to-do list at the moment. With the other things I’m currently working on I’d be slicing my practice time quite thinly if I picked it up now but soon. For now, House of the Rising Sun is my track that I’m using to learn finger picking.


This is sounding really good, Rogier. I went and so far watched the first 20ish minutes of the JR video, and you’re right on track with him. The ending sounds really cool as well. Have fun learning the rest of the practice piece on your road to Freight Train!

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great progress @roger_holland!

You’re getting there! Some parts will be slower but it will always be forward.

And it’s to all when I say that skills gained with this kind of practice make the next song a bit easier and so on! Make it a habit and it becomes second nature! After a while you’ll have certain patterns going on autopilot but first you’ll have to go through this phase where you program every movement, action, pick,… in a a sequence of blocks; raking those blocks in asequence of their own.

Getting there!


Ahhh Rogier, that was very tasty. Some pretty smooth playing there which I really enjoyed but you’re at it again with your 40 second teasers and leaving your audience wanting more.

I’m looking forward to the whole song.


As someone who hasn’t tried fingerstyle yet, all I can say is that it sounds great. Nevertheless, please take this compliment with due pride :smiley:

That’s what the repeat button is for :smile:


Sounding good Rogier. Looks like you’ve started something that will have a very satisfying end result. I look forward to following your progress.
Well done.

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Hi Rogier, this already sounds very good…it’s beyond my competence’s level to say anything else than this. I’m very happy you posted as you’re getting good feedback from others and great advice from Lieven which I’m sure will be very helpful for you.
Keep on rocking and rolling!


Exactly :joy: @SgtColon


Great job Rogier. Great milestone on that difficult, but rewarding road to Freigh Train.

In his complete course, Joe Robinson puts this song after 3 modules of pratice (Thumb Patterns, Finger Patterns & Fingerstyle Blues Progressions), so it’s definitely a great milestone to be working on this song now :slight_smile:

Keep it up ! I’ll join you on this road in a few months hihi!

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Sounding really good, Rogier. Great progress after only such a short time :clap::clap::clap:!
Thanks for recording this ‘appetizer’. I’m looking forward to hear more :star_struck:.


Good evening my friend. I hit the play button as soon as you posted it but with work getting in the way I never got the chance to comment straight away. Although, it gave me a chance to listen again before commenting so you’re getting a more rounded feedback. I thought that sounded great, you’ve made fantastic progress. I think that you’re at the stage where you don’t need to watch your picking hand as it definitely knows what strings to pick, you showed that towards the end. I think you’re at the stage now where you can just let loose and play it with feeling which shows how far you’ve come. Dude you can play guitar, you’ve just been hiding it from us, I’m so happy that you’re sharing more videos with us. And I know you have a singing voice, I’ve heard you serenading Brian, I’m hoping you’ll serenade us all at some point. Your technique looked good to me. I did have one question on my mind, I know you have the acoustic guitar and wondering why you chose the electric over it for this piece? Hope your having a good weekend. Greetings. James


Roger Roger Rogier. Is Freight Train a song? Sounds like you’re on your way there with alternating bass. Alternating constant bass is really hard!

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Greetings indeed Roger!
I admire you dedication and sticking to a good plan on how to go about this. It sounded great to me and you did a good job!

All the best as you continue on mate!


Hello nice people with your very nice comments and tips :smiley: :sunglasses:… where I normally thank everyone as quickly as possible and provide explanations and so , I will let this thread be a little less busy from my side because I will (probably) still be posting many videos in the future :crossed_fingers: … thank you very much for the encouragement that I certainly need it in the long road to something like this below …O my goodness it will be long long road to play this song that way @Socio and that’s why I choose the electric :roll_eyes:… O no I’m not going to lie about it :grin: … I was planning to I can use the acoustic for this (just found that song as @jkahn JK made me doubt :face_with_raised_eyebrow: :grin:), but that is more difficult for me because the strings are too thick I have on there (12 now I try 10 )… new ones have been ordered and then I alternate between electric and acoustic and will then try more often not to look at my fingers but from the Dm to the C things often go wrong when I have to pluck the bottom E string with my ring finger… and I have a tendency to look up strangely when I’m not looking at one of my hands or just down… but you have I agree that I have to unlearn it and I hardly need it most times I practice this…
O and the thumb with the Dm I also often had to lookout for :grimacing: but also better today…

It remains bizarre how well recording and actually posting helps to make progress :sunglasses:

And to everyone who will take much longer than where I am now in this short time keep on going … this was the easy part but only if you have been playing Justin’s fingerstyle arrangements for quite some time …
Perhaps it would be nice to say that this 3rd exercise is going much better today due to the pressure of recording and can now be used as a warm-up for part 4 from Monday and I can do it without looking at my hands … although I sometimes still miss the E string with my ring finger…

Thank you thank you all :sunglasses: :hatching_chick: