Monday, March 30, 2015

Acoustic Blues Guitar Tips - Big Bill Broonzy Swing Blues

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Broonzy's own influences included the folk music, spirituals, work songs, ragtime music, hokum and country blues he heard growing up, and the styles of his contemporaries, including Jimmie Rodgers, Blind Blake, Son House, and Blind Lemon Jefferson. Broonzy combined all these influences into his own style of the blues that foreshadowed the post-war Chicago blues sound, later refined and popularized by artists such as Muddy Waters and Willie Dixon.

Although he had been a pioneer of the Chicago blues style and had employed electric instruments as early as 1942, his new, white audiences wanted to hear him playing his earliest songs accompanied only by his own acoustic guitar, since this was considered to be more "authentic". A considerable part of his early ARC/CBS recordings have been reissued in anthology collections by CBS-Sony, and other earlier recordings have been collected on blues reissue labels, as have his later European and Chicago recordings of the 1950s.

The Smithsonian's Folkways Records has also released several albums featuring Big Bill Broonzy. In 1980, he was inducted into the first class of the Blues Hall of Fame along with 20 other of the world's greatest blues legends. In 2007, he was inducted into the first class of the Gennett Records Walk of Fame along with 11 other musical greats including Louis Armstrong, Jelly Roll Morton, Gene Autry,
Lawrence Welk and others.

Broonzy as an acoustic guitar player, inspired Muddy Waters, Memphis Slim, Ray Davies, John Renbourn, Rory Gallagher, and Ben Taylor. In Q Magazine (September 2007) it is reported that Ronnie Wood of The Rolling Stones claims that Bill Broonzy's track, "Guitar Shuffle", is his favorite guitar music. Wood said, "It was one of the first tracks I learnt to play, but even to this day I can't play it exactly right."

During the benediction at the 2009 inauguration ceremony of President Barack Obama, the civil rights leader Rev. Dr. Joseph Lowery paraphrased Broonzy's song "Black, Brown and White Blues". Broonzy recorded over 350 compositions.

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Weeping Willow by Blind Boy Fuller - Guitar Lesson Preview


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Friday, March 27, 2015

Acoustic Blues Guitar Lessons Online - Rev Gary Davis - Learn Blues Guitar Fingerpicking


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Blues Guitar Tips - Rev Gary Davis - Learn Blues Guitar Fingerpicking

The Reverend favored a big body Gibson - great rich, profound bass notes and distinctive treble sound (probably good for slicing through traffic noise as he played on the streets.) He wore finger picks to protect his fingers he said, which amplify the guitar sound naturally but additionally save the fingers becoming sore from performing for many hours, as blues men did in those days.

He wore a big plastic Dunlop-type pick worn high on his thumb, and on is forefinger he wore a steel pick. Amazingly, he picked the strings with just one finger, which scarcely seems feasible with such complicated syncopation. That magic thumb could bounce all round the fret board, not happy with playing just the bass strings.

The thumb might also pull out of regular timing doubling the beat, which demnstrates formidable mastery of the guitar. Another Gary Davis characteristic were his finger pickingruns on single strings. He'd hit one string string in an alternate pattern with thumb and finger in quick succession very fast, while singing!

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Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Acoustic Blues Guitar lesson - Kentucky Blues #2 - Fingerpicking Guitar


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This is the second video in which I look at the mysterious Kentucky Blues by Dennis Little Hat Jones. I add some tab to make it more interesting - enjoy!

Best, Jim

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Acoustic Blues Guitar - Diddie Wah Diddie - Blind Blake Cover


Diddie Wah Diddie Cover

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When beginning to search for the perfect acoustic blues guitar lessons, a lot of people use the omnipresent Google search engine, and Google it, as they say. Increasingly more searches for just about anything you could imagine are made on Youtube - as a matter of fact that it's the second most used search service after Google itself. Like Google, the amount of items returned for a term such as 'blues guitar lessons' is enormous - how do you choose the tuition that's best for you, and how to play acoustic blues in the old way? Youtube guitar videos boast all kinds of techniques and teaching levels, both paid but also free.

Blues guitar tabs are recommended for the most effective guitar lessons. Such tablature doesn't have to be that complicated at all, with just simple indications of finger movements and blues guitar chords. Many blues guitar tabs have too much detail, trying to encapsulate the overall style of authentic blues playing, something that isn't plausible! This directs us to the second characteristic of good acoustic guitar courses - the teacher has to be able to perform the music very well (and any tabs should precisely represent what he is demonstrating.)

Guitar tablature in isolation isn't sufficient to impart that imperceptible hesitation, or the thumb stroke that is a little off the beat when required to complement the words. Sure, the tab can show that one movement has to be be damped with the heel of the hand, but can't indicate that action itself isn't continuous, but varies in sound as the force of the hand on the strings is continually being changed depending on the needs of the music.

Take your time when looking for guitar lessons, whatever the style. The Orientals have a saying 'several engaged in doing nothing but finding the right instructor is very well spent'. This is great advice. You don't need to take so much time for your search, but make your choice with care and ignore the marketing ploys. Don't expect to improve in two weeks, take nice and slow, don't push yourself too hard and above all, enjoy the ride and the music.

The Vital Attributes Of Great Video Guitar Lessons

A search on the internet for guitar tuition in video format can be a time consuming activity, particularly for the new player with hardly any experience. What are some of the features of the most effective courses on offer? As you could imagine, its possible to identify common features that could assist in choosing the right teacher.

Tuition must be Easy To Follow

Even though it just about goes without saying, a course for any subject lmatter should progress in a logical way and be easy to take in. First steps should be properly described, and grow into further tuition. Without a doubt musical notation has it's place, but a student guitarist is really impatient to start learning - he just wants to play something!

This must be the primary step, teaching the fundamental techniques that could be put into practice straight from the start. When it comes down to it, a thorough understanding of the first concepts will give massive benefits later on in the instruction.

Music Notation against Tablature

Normally, guitarists in the classical style were taught to understand musical notation and follow the written notes when playing in public or composing new music. Inevitably, this means a progress that is often perceived as too sluggish in today's busy lifestyle. In the 60s, acoustic blues guru Stephan Grossman amongst others,
created a system of guitar notation that depicted the frets and the six strings of the guitar neck.

This abbreviated 'musical' notation quickly became the norm and represents an efficient tool for learning how to play acoustic guitar, for example. A pattern of 6 strings is shown with numbers from the low bass string (1) to the high E string (6) and a number overlayed over a string shows which fretting finger needs to be positioned above. A straight line to the side of the number indicates that the thumb or finger is used.

Image Presentation - Guitar Tab - The Things That Should Be Displayed On The Video Screen

There are many possibilities around for this subject, but its possible to point out important features of this important aid to guitar tuition. The student should know from the start what the aim of the tuition is. If it is to understand and play an entire song, then that the music should be be played in just the same as the demonstrated tuition shown all the way through the entire lesson.

Before going into detailed tuition, any difficult movements should be discussed and important advice given. A close up of both hands are indispensible, and are best shown individually. The chords and tab may be shown on the video sreen, in this way learners can easily follow the finger movements at the same time.

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Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Acoustic Blues Guitar Lessons - Kentucky Blues - Dennis 'Little Hat' Jones

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We take a look at a catchy little tune here, but from a slightly different perspective. I go through the process I use to learn a new song. This video sketches out the basic chords and an approach to the basic sound. Next video will add some tab and refine the right hand finger tehcniques. 

Enjoy Jim

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Acoustic Blues Guitar Song - Kentucky Blues by George Little Hat Jones


Acoustic Blues Guitar Lessons

Currently working on the tab for this catchy little tune. There are many great covers on the Tube, but not sure that they've got it right ... we'll see.

Very best Jim

Monday, March 2, 2015

Acoustic Blues guitar - Jim Bruce Original - 'Peace'


Acoustic Blues Guitar Lessons

I wrote this piece some years ago (must have been a folky period!). It's called Peace - you need it, you know you do. Go for it!

All the best Jim