Years ago, I had the idea of writing a book about the history of the blues guitar.
For many reasons, I never turned the idea into reality, but it’s something I may do one day.
The concept was to teach blues guitar through the ages…
…Where we would trace the history of it while teaching fun examples.
It was going to go right from the delta roots all the way to the blues influence on modern pop.
Yeah, I strongly believe that most music that we hear today would not be remotely the same without the blues from way back when.
I was going to highlight how brilliant fingerpickers like Robert Johnson made these really low-fi but very powerful recordings, Blind Blake blew everyone away, and then how others such as Lightning Hopkins and Muddy Waters came along, and how Chuck Berry and rock’n’roll took the blues to a different level.
Then there were the likes of B.B. King who got Lucille (his guitar) and played these soulful, weeping licks that just oozed the blues but in a different manner.
Later, the blues became apparent in non-blues styles, the glam of T.Rex (listen to Hot Love), the punk-rock of The Ramones (punk was mostly the I-IV-V chords which are the primary chords of the blues), and even pop music.
Its influence is everywhere, and I love to play all these different blues sounds on my guitar and go back in time as I do.
I used to jam the blues with students a lot and that was always a fun highlight for me (and the students) for years.
These days though, I choose not to teach quite as much in person, so I tend to play a little more solo fingerstyle blues to get my full blues fix.
…And to be honest, playing the blues on guitar, where the bass and the melody are present, is a tonne of fun.
When you get it, you have this tight chugging bass line driving the rhythm along…
Plus, you have the soulful, and sometimes sweet, other times angular, melodies.
That’s the great thing about the blues, it can be uplifting and jovial, or it can be lonesome, and mournful.
I reckon that’s why it’s so powerful, it covers every emotion.
I mean, how can one style sound so bleak one minute but uplifting the next with just a few tweaks to the rhythm, tempo, key, and a scale note or two.
As you can see, this is something I’m passionate about, and today I recorded a brand-new blues piece for the Dan Thorpe Acoustic Academy.
It contains two 12-bar blues arrangements.
One made for a super simple beginner level and the other for the early intermediate level.
Both require no chords (“Is that possible?” you may wonder. Yep, I’ll talk about this more soon) and…
Both contain multiple 1-minute melodies (I’ll definitely talk more about this soon too).
I also teach you how to choose which one is suitable for you and will give you a solid action plan for applying the lessons throughout the whole of March.
One thing I should say is, even if you don’t listen to blues, it’s a tonne of fun to play on guitar. Around 80% of my private students over the years never really listen to blues at home, but absolutely love playing it on guitar.
All in all, this is a super exciting lesson which will be released on the 1st of March.
To get it, you will need to make sure you join the Dan Thorpe Acoustic Academy before then…
Find out more about the Dan Thorpe Acoustic Academy
Enjoy the blues!
P.S. This post was originally taken from Dan Thorpe’s private email list. To get blog posts like this sent to you which are full of great tips to make fingerpicking, strumming, and learning guitar more enjoyable (especially if you are over 40) join Dan’s list. It’s 100% free, HERE.
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