Playing the blues

Playing the blues

Postby James-T » Mon Apr 06, 2015 8:32 pm

I was watching a video a few months back looking for inspiration. It was 10 tips on being a better guitar player.

It wan't what I was expecting. Suggestions like:

Don't be an asshole. Get along with folks. Playing in a band after all is a team sport.
Exercise and eat healthily food, get lots of sleep. Sounds pretty basic.

But the one that got me was play the blues - even if you are shredding heavy metal. Because most of what we do in modern guitar playing has its roots in the blues.

I've been studying slow blues stuff on again off again since then. How to start a solo, what notes to target, how to manage the turn around. Really basic stuff, but its got great spill over.

Here's a clip of late. Sort of what I learned, and the best part of the blues and how it relates to Dead stuff I think at least is dynamics.

And hey it's a chance to show off my great Canadian guitar eh?

Just something to throw out there and see if it resonates with anyone.

Peace,

James

James-T
Senior Member
 
Posts: 584
Joined: Thu Oct 18, 2012 11:57 pm

Re: Playing the blues

Postby PaulJay » Mon Apr 06, 2015 8:55 pm

Time to go down to the crossroads young man. :cheers:
User avatar
PaulJay
Skeleton
Skeleton
 
Posts: 342
Joined: Fri Apr 08, 2011 10:40 pm

Re: Playing the blues

Postby James-T » Tue Apr 07, 2015 8:06 pm

Thanks! :smile:

Peace,

James

James-T
Senior Member
 
Posts: 584
Joined: Thu Oct 18, 2012 11:57 pm

Re: Playing the blues

Postby eric » Tue Apr 07, 2015 8:41 pm

Cool man.. I'm picking up what you're putting down..

Whenever I feel a bit lost, stagnant, meh, or whatever, in terms of the the progression of my playing abilities (which is just about everyday), I revisit the basic blues stuff.. I'm sure it goes without saying, but I really feel that a strong foundation in the blues is the key for being able to rip it up in the 'Jam Genre'.
eric
Phil
Phil
 
Posts: 323
Joined: Wed Sep 15, 2010 7:00 am
Location: CT / RI

Re: Playing the blues

Postby PaulJay » Thu Apr 09, 2015 3:37 pm

It's evident that The Warlocks and then the early Grateful Dead's music was heavily influenced by the blues. It's to bad that blues players of today seem to stay in their comfort zone and tend not to go off into improvisational jamming.
Last edited by PaulJay on Thu Apr 09, 2015 7:20 pm, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
PaulJay
Skeleton
Skeleton
 
Posts: 342
Joined: Fri Apr 08, 2011 10:40 pm

Re: Playing the blues

Postby Searing75 » Thu Apr 09, 2015 4:29 pm

I play a good deal of blues tunes. Dig it.
All's well that sounds well.
User avatar
Searing75
Senior Member
 
Posts: 722
Joined: Wed Sep 25, 2013 6:09 am
Location: Western NY

Re: Playing the blues

Postby TI4-1009 » Thu Apr 09, 2015 4:42 pm

PaulJay wrote:It's evident that The Warlocks and then the early Grateful Dead's music was heavily influenced by the blues. It's to bad that blues players of today seem to stay in their comfort zone and tend not to go off into improvisational jammig.


Yup, PigPen was a blues guy and his dad was an R&B/blues DJ. In the Warlocks formative year(s) they were really a blues band with some pop and R&R thrown in. That's the roots of the Dead.
"Do not write so that you can be understood, write so that you cannot be misunderstood." -Epictetus

First show: 8/16/69 (Woodstock)
Last show: 3/19/95 (Unbroken Chain breakout)
Member of the Four-Decade Club
Charter Member, President & CEO of OAD (Order of the Ancient Deadheads)
User avatar
TI4-1009
Senior Member
 
Posts: 2024
Joined: Fri Aug 20, 2010 6:27 am
Location: Upstate NY- Toodaloo

Re: Playing the blues

Postby Lephty » Thu Apr 09, 2015 9:47 pm

Yeah I feel like one of my faults as a player tends to be over-playing, never coming up for air. Listening to some blues can help cure that (Miles Davis too). There's also a certain sense of drama, or swagger, or mustard, or whatever you want to call it, to good blues playing. Big dramatic licks, and very expressive--emphasizing certain notes by digging in harder, lots of bends, slides & vibrato. In that respect you can hear a LOT of blues in Garcia's style.
http://www.highcountryguitar.com recently re-vamped and updated.
Ideal practice tools for improvisation...backing tracks, lessons on modes, CAGED, etc.
Lephty
Ice Cream!
Ice Cream!
 
Posts: 114
Joined: Sat Apr 28, 2012 10:35 am
Location: Boulder, CO

Re: Playing the blues

Postby James-T » Thu Apr 09, 2015 10:26 pm

Coming up for air, wow. That's a great way of looking at it. What I like about John Kadelic's playin is he really lays off. His hand even leaves the neck between licks on the odd occasion. I used to think it was carpal tunnel or something. Pretty sure it's just technique.

I'm so guilty about leaving space in my solos. Garcia was a master. I remember listening to the Eleven on live dead for a year before i realized that he layed off for about a minute before he even starting his solo. Probally having a smoke.

Peace,

James
James-T
Senior Member
 
Posts: 584
Joined: Thu Oct 18, 2012 11:57 pm

Re: Playing the blues

Postby Searing75 » Fri Apr 10, 2015 3:52 am

The blues scale can be used as the foundation for all major and minor scales. It's a very simple pattern and offers great movements sonically! You can't do The Dead without knowing it.
All's well that sounds well.
User avatar
Searing75
Senior Member
 
Posts: 722
Joined: Wed Sep 25, 2013 6:09 am
Location: Western NY

Re: Playing the blues

Postby hippieguy1954 » Fri Apr 10, 2015 4:01 am

Ya can't escape the blues that's for sure. It naturally seeps into your soul with it's attractive selection of deep soul ripping melodies and expressions and combinations that are endless.
Phrasing is so important and fun too. Sometimes, "It's not the notes you play, it's the notes you don't play" - Miles Davis
Jim

First show: 1973
Last show: 1994
User avatar
hippieguy1954
Senior Member
 
Posts: 1988
Joined: Thu Mar 24, 2011 1:29 pm
Location: Upstate, NY

Re: Playing the blues

Postby Lephty » Fri Apr 10, 2015 6:40 am

I actually kind of mean "coming up for air" almost literally. I was taught to think like a horn player--a horn player HAS to take a breath once in a while, forcing him to phrase in such a way that allows for it. Definitely something us guitarists can learn from.
http://www.highcountryguitar.com recently re-vamped and updated.
Ideal practice tools for improvisation...backing tracks, lessons on modes, CAGED, etc.
Lephty
Ice Cream!
Ice Cream!
 
Posts: 114
Joined: Sat Apr 28, 2012 10:35 am
Location: Boulder, CO

Re: Playing the blues

Postby Franklin » Thu Jul 16, 2015 12:52 pm

Most great guitar players can play the Blues well, it's where even shredders add some "taste" or feeling to their solos. Paul Gilbert for example specifically cites the Blues for his inspiration and his ability to play slowly. I know an old trick for auditioning people (esp guitarists) is to play slow Blues, the slower the better. If they can hang with it, they have good technique and timing.
Franklin
Vince
Vince
 
Posts: 7
Joined: Tue Jun 17, 2008 11:51 am

Re: Playing the blues

Postby aiq » Fri Jul 17, 2015 12:23 pm

I was taking some jazz lessons a few years back and the teacher said play a little blues in each practice session.
User avatar
aiq
Senior Member
 
Posts: 547
Joined: Sun Sep 27, 2009 6:52 am
Location: Gulf Coast.


Return to The Think Tank

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests