Am Blues Rhythm Ideas
Am Blues Rhythm Ideas
This lesson is for Davis and anyone else who’s wanting to know how to play tasty rhythm ideas in the style of BB King or ZZ top–basically minor blues rock-rhythm stuff. I’ve addressed three concepts here, the first two being for those who prefer to play against a backing track, the third without one, but it’s all good either way really.
*A note on this PDF: On example #3, the first and third bars you will see some double stop pull-offs on the A/D strings. The software I use didn’t allow me to add a pull-off to the upper note of each double stop, but we are pulling them off as pairs. Ok, now on to business…
#1: Sliding chord pieces.
Slimming down your rhythm chords makes it much easier to use in creative ways, one of which is sliding. Up and back a whole step is common (and used in this demo.) Also try sliding into your chords from a fret under your destination. Sliding a shape takes a bit more control than sliding a single note, so try using your thumb as a pivot-point, keeping it stationary against the back of the neck. You can also try sliding smaller pieces from your parent chord shapes in string pairs: the E and B string, B and G string, E and G and so on.
#2: Work in a melody.
Once you’re comfortable with the chord snippets try working a melody/lick into the mix. I’ve kept it kind of generic in this lesson (to keep you guys focused! HA!) These licks are coincidentally chord tones, which is nice because they will work over the chords regardless of the key or style of music (more on that someday!)
#3: Using the thumb for rhythm.
This concept strays from the first two, but I think it’s super fun and well worth mentioning. Playing with the thumb takes a bit of work but opens up a whole bunch of options for the solo guitarist who wants to keep his rhythm section behind him, and it will work it’s way into your playing in many other ways as well. Good stuff. In this lesson I’ve made this demo around the A minor pentatonic scale (or A minor blues scale.) This time it’s more of a scale-based creative exercise where anything goes. You are the rhythm and the lead together. You have the keys to the Lamborghini, haha…
A minor pentatonic? What’s that?
Here’s a lesson on the scale I used for example #3 above. Keep in mind that some of the notes I used were not in the scale–that’s how ya make that music! Study hard dudes!
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