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Acoustic Blues Guitar


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Blues Guitar Riffs

This lesson continues on the foundation of the 12-Bar Blues Guitar.  If you don't know what that is, I'd recommend you head over to that lesson first and then come back here.

So more on the 12-Bar Blues.  There's just so much you can do with it, and with each extra trick you add to it, the whole thing just sounds cooler. Now we're going to take the rhythm to a whole new level by using melodic and repetitive riffs during the progression.  This will form a fully structured song or solo commonly used in Acoustic Blues Guitar.

In the key of E and sticking to the standard 12-Bar progression, we're now going to replace the chords with some riffs. Instead of playing the E chord, yo
u'll play a riff in E. Instead of playing the A chord; you'll play a riff in A. You get the idea right?

Simple! Here are our riffs in Tablature format:


Let's look at three common acoustic blues guitar riffs and combine them into the 12-Bar Blues structure, to form a song.

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Blues Guitar Riff
Blues Guitar Riff
Blues Guitar Riff
E =
A =
B7 =
Remember the 12-Bar progression?  If not, check the graphic below the video for a refresher.

We're now going to combine the riffs above, with the 12 bar progression and play the riffs instead of the chords.  This is what it should look and sound like:
Tip:  For additional practice, try alternating between the riffs and chords. Play the chords for the first 12 bars, and then the riffs for the second 12 bars, and then back to the chords and so forth.
12-Bar Blues Progression - Refresher...
12 Bar Blues Structure
Getting all of these riffs mastered, and successfully incorporating them into the 12-Bar structure (with correct tempo), will probably take some time and practice, especially if you're new to blues.

So don't be too quick to jump to further lessons, stay put and practice this section for a day or two until you've got it nailed down.

If you feel you're ready to proceed, have a look at the next lesson...
Proceed from to the next lesson - Blues Guitar Scales
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