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Suggest Some 12 Bar Blues Songs That Are Good Practice

Discussion in 'Music to Your Ears' started by castpolymer, Sep 5, 2012.

  1. willie.g

    willie.g TDPRI Member

    Nov 12, 2011
    ZZ Top's Fool For Your Stockings ... ?

  2. PhatBoy

    PhatBoy Tele-Afflicted

    Mar 17, 2003
    OKC, OK
    Allman Bros - One Way Out
    Howlin Wolf - Built For Comfort

  3. rave

    rave Tele-Holic

    Jun 17, 2011
    Los Angeles
    I like

    BB Kings - Its my own fault. Also check youtube for a great Sean Costello version
    BB King - Thrill is gone to practice minor blues
    Magic Sam - All of your Love, a blues progression that does not sound quite like one
    Claptons Version of It Hurts me Too - 8 Bar blues
    Claptons Someday after awhile - has some jazzy chords and a bridge, great leads

    For Jazzy

    Tenor Madness Bb Blues
    Equinox Coltrane

    Good luck

  4. 122 Vega

    122 Vega TDPRI Member

    Oct 28, 2011
    Portland, Oregon
    I've abandoned tab in favor of training my ears to tell my fingers where to go, and this is what I've been playing along with:

    Paul Butterfield Blues Band - First two albums

    Howlin Wolf - All of him

    Nick Gravinites - My Labors

    Muddy Waters - Any

    And lately, Kenny Wayne Shepard - Trouble Is...

  5. gearhead1972

    gearhead1972 Tele-Meister

    Nov 25, 2010
    Carmel NY
    Love this one, notice he plays lead on the root (1) C then plays the chord on the 4 and 5 chords. I love playing to this.

    and another of my favorites

  6. BenM

    BenM Tele-Meister

    May 5, 2010
    Des Moines, IA

  7. trev333

    trev333 Telefied Ad Free Member

    Red House.. play along with Jimi..... let him do the lead of course.....;)

  8. twangjeff

    twangjeff Tele-Afflicted

    Feb 2, 2010
    Houston, TX
    Just depends what you dig...

    Freddie King
    Have You Ever Loved a Woman
    Love Her With a Feeling
    Going Down

    Albert King
    Crosscut Saw
    Don't Throw Your Love on Me So Strong

    Pride and Joy
    Texas Flood

    Albert Collins
    Black Cat Bone
    T Bone Shuffle
    If You Love Me Like You Say

    ZZ Hill
    Down Home Blues
    Someone Else is Steppin In

    Bobby Bland
    I Smell Trouble
    Further On Up the Road
    You've Got Me Where You Want Me

    BB King
    Let the Good Times Roll
    How Blue Can You Get
    The Thrill is Gone
    Everyday I Have the Blues

    Johnny Guitar Watson
    I've Got Eyes
    Gangsta of Love

    Junior Parker
    Mother in Law Blues
    Driving Wheel

    Muddy Waters
    I Feel So Good
    I've Got My Mojo Workin
    She's 19 Years Old

    That's just off the top of my head, I mean there are millions!

  9. czgibson

    czgibson Tele-Afflicted

    Jan 3, 2012
    Once you're comfortable playing 12 bar blues chord changes in one key, make sure you can do it in all keys. Soloing over a blues form in all keys is a must as well.

    Try learning songs that have a specific hook of their own, so that your blues tunes don't end up all sounding the same. This could be a riff or a melody, as in tunes like:

    'Folsom Prison Blues' - Johnny Cash
    'Boom Boom' - John Lee Hooker
    'Johnny B. Goode' - Chuck Berry

    Or it could be a useful set of chord changes that is a bit out of the ordinary, such as:

    'Need Your Love So Bad' - Fleetwood Mac
    'The Thrill Is Gone' - B. B. King
    'Blues For Alice' - Charlie Parker

    'Smokestack Lightning' by Howlin' Wolf is a good one to spend time with too: it has a riff, and it stays on the same chord the whole way through. If you can make that sound interesting, magic will happen.

  10. twintwelve

    twintwelve Tele-Afflicted

    Nov 13, 2010
    Laurel, DE
    Learn some "box shuffles". Songs like "Tore Down", "Snatch it Back and Hold It", "Look Over Yonders Wall". "Checkin Up On My Baby", "Good Morning Little Schoolgirl". Very simple, but many variations..........

  11. Larry F

    Larry F Doctor of Teleocity Vendor Member

    Nov 5, 2006
    Iowa City, IA
    Killing Floor doesn't seem to have been mentioned yet. It is one of the best 12-bar types out there.

  12. elihu

    elihu Poster Extraordinaire

    Dec 24, 2009
    Professor? (raising hand respectfully!)...

    Could it also be said that one commonly used melodic characteristic of the 12 bar blues is modulating to the minor 3rd on the IV chord? Like the sax riff at the beginning of Honky Tonk? (guitar solo does it too at 1:24).

    CP, this is an iconic 12 bar blues that hasn't been mentioned yet-but it's one well worth learning.

  13. Mr_Mer

    Mr_Mer Tele-Holic

    Mar 16, 2010

  14. Larry F

    Larry F Doctor of Teleocity Vendor Member

    Nov 5, 2006
    Iowa City, IA
    Absolutely. This fits into the chord-tone model, as the minor third of the key or scale is the flat seventh of the IV7 chord.

  15. twangjeff

    twangjeff Tele-Afflicted

    Feb 2, 2010
    Houston, TX
    The minor third trick is cool. Something a lot of modern blues guys (Robben Ford, Scott Henderson, et al) do is superimpose melodic minor over chords to hit some alter notes and extensions. This work a lot of different ways.

    So for E blues you would Get GMM over A7

    G A Bb C D E F#
    b7 R b9 #9 11 5 6

    Very neat way to hit all the extensions. The #9 is what blues power is all about after all! You could also do the same thing on the turnaround by playing eith A MM, or CMM over B7.

    CMM would hit all of the altered notes for you...

    C D Eb F G A B
    #9 3 b5 #5 b7 b9

    AMM would hit a few and leave some alone which is coll for a different sound.

    A B C D E F G#
    b7 R b9 3 4 b5 b6

    I like to use MM down a whole step on the turnaround and then go from A Melodic Minor to E Major Pentatonic or E Mixolydian on the I. I like that minor to major cadence. I call it the "I'll Follow the Sun," Cadence. Just like on the Beatles tune.

  16. twangjeff

    twangjeff Tele-Afflicted

    Feb 2, 2010
    Houston, TX
    Sorry for rambling. I just like this approach a lot more than learning 50 different altered arpeggios.

  17. Larry F

    Larry F Doctor of Teleocity Vendor Member

    Nov 5, 2006
    Iowa City, IA
    I like the altered chord idea better than a scale. With altered chords, you know how every note that you play will sound against the chord. You can get more specific emotional content that way. My aversion to the scale approach is that it can sound like running notes up and down, without pausing to emphasize certain ones. I did my share of scales when I was younger, so I can understand the attraction. But if you know your chord spellings and notes on the fingerboard, you can zero in on specific emotional inflections.

    Of course, this is all personal preference. But once you start teaching, the responsibility for your decisions becomes greater.

  18. binkydognose

    binkydognose Tele-Afflicted

    Nov 20, 2009
    Glendale Arizona

  19. RubyRae

    RubyRae Friend of Leo's

    Dec 8, 2009
    If you want to add some flavor with a few subtle key changes:

    Steely Dan - Chain Lightning

  20. DrumBob

    DrumBob -------------------------

    Jul 23, 2009
    Highland Lakes, NJ
    Your mom was definitely hip to have done that for you.

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