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Each of the links below directs you to a specific course or collection of lessons. Lessons are divided into three categories based on skill level. These headings are only suggestions as we are all at different points in our mandolin journey. You may be a solid intermediate player that never paid attention to how you were holding your pick. The How To Hold Your Pick lesson is usually found in the first few pages of any beginner guitar/mandolin book, and those lessons are found in the beginner section here also. On the other hand, you may be a beginner and you already have a goal of learning to play Whiskey Before Breakfast. If you know what it sounds like, you like it, and you want to play it on your mandolin, you should look at that lesson. By playing music that you like, you will have more fun, and spend more time playing, making you a better player. 

Don Julin


If you are brand new to the mandolin, you should look here first. 

Beginner's Corner

Get Rhythm Pt.1

Alan Epstein's Mandolin Vitamins


To get the most out of the intermediate section, you should know a few basic chords and be able to follow along with others in a jam. You should also be able to pick out a few simple melodies. This section includes Fiddle Tunes, Bluegrass, Jigs, Waltzes, Double Stops, Duets, and Exercises that will improve your playing and expand your vocabulary on the mandolin.

What Goes Up Must Come Down

Don's Favorites (fiddle tunes)

Assorted Fun Tunes

EZ Classical Duets (minuets)

Building A Traditional Bluegrass Mandolin Break

Getting To Know The Notes

David Benedict's One Stop Double Stop Shop

David Benedict's Waltz Warehouse

David Benedict's Jivin' On The Jigs


The following lessons range from intermediate/advanced level instructional videos, to virtuoso level performances. Don't be discouraged if these seem difficult and congratulate yourself if they don't. In general, you should be experienced in playing in bands and have a fairly good understanding of music theory to get the most out of this section.

Jordan Ramsey's McReynolds Style Cross-Picking

Chris Henry's Bluegrass Lessons

Tim Connell's Solo Arrangements

David Benedict's Mandolin Mondays

Jazz & Swing Tunes

Don's Original Tunes

Don's Youtube Lessons

Don's Major Scale Workout (Coming Soon)


Techniques and Exercises

Alternate picking, Tremolo, Slides, Hammer-ons, Triplets, Double Stops, Strumming patterns, Scales, and many more topics are covered in this section. These are the techniques and skills that make you sounds wonderful on the mandolin. It takes many years to master these techniques so don't be in a hurry, also don't get discouraged when you find that some of these skills are very difficult and seem quite un-natural at first. Remember that songs are the reason you are playing the mandolin and these established mandolin techniques will help you make your songs more beautiful. 

Check out a few free sample lessons