Today we will take a look at how to play a common blues riff that you can incorporate into your playing right away. The cool thing about blues licks and riffs is that you are not limited to just using them when playing blues style music.
Blues guitar, which has its origins in the honky tonks, shotgun houses, and weathered front porches of the Mississippi Delta, went on to have a profound impact on many other styles of music.
Some of the most well known guitarists of our time, including Jimi Hendrix, Eric Clapton, Jimmy Page and Stevie Ray Vaughan (to name a few), all admit to being heavily influenced in the early days by the blues masters.
Chuck Berry took blues licks and riffs back in the fifties, and applied them to the electric guitar, practically inventing his own unique style of guitar playing.
As a result, many blues oriented guitar chops have made their way into modern music, and have become so ingrained in multiple genres such as rock, country, gospel and more – that their Delta roots have become elusive.
Here is a simple blues lick that you can learn right now. Take a look:
This riff is based out of the A minor pentatonic, or "A blues" scale in the 5th fret position.
Start by playing the 2nd and 3rd string at the 5th fret, by barring those two notes with the 1st finger.
Then, while those two notes are still sustaining, do a hammer-on with the 2nd finger to the note on the 6th fret of the 3rd string, while continuing to let the notes sustain.
Next, with the 3rd finger, play the note on the 7th fret of the 4th string.
Then, while the 3rd finger is in position from the previous step, simply "roll" it over to barre the two notes on the 7th fret of the 2nd and 3rd strings.
Finally, wrap up the riff by repeating the first part of it, including the hammer-on.
There are a ton of variations you can do by using this riff as the "core", and expanding on it.
This riff can be played as part of a lead progression, and also used rhythmically, in this case, over an A chord.
You can easily transfer this riff to other keys by simply sliding it up or down the neck and applying it to the desired key. The fingering is exactly the same.
Play around with this riff and experiment with some of your own variations. You will quickly find that you can use it for many songs in a variety of genres.
Shown below another realatively easy electric guitar song to play. You Really Got Me by The Kinks.
Instructor John McCarthy provides a solid foundation in blues.
Since, most people have a weakness for guitar, they prefer the use of guitar riffs in every song. The use of guitar riffs in blues songs attracts them
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If you are reading this article then you are proably intrested in learning blues guitar. There is nothing like being able to strum some cool Blues guitar riffs.