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Play Blues Guitar 2: Rhythm & Lead Fundamentals

Learn blues guitar rhythm & lead with this Blues Learning Path core course.
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Overview

Welcome to Play Blues Guitar 2: Rhythm & Lead Fundamentals—the second leg of your TrueFire Learning Path journey toward becoming a solid Blues guitar player. This Blues Learning Path core course is presented by 3 top TrueFire educators: Jeff McErlain, Corey Congilio, and Jeff Scheetz. They'll guide your development of the essential skills and get up and running quickly—no reading music, no boring exercises, no tedious theory to struggle through. In fact, you'll play your way through the entire course.

In Play Blues Guitar 1 you learned a couple of songs and licks, along with a handful of blues chords and rhythms. Here in Play Blues Guitar 2, you're going to venture even further down the path with scales, a little soloing, more blues rhythms and more cool blues chords. For example, you'll learn how to move up the neck playing a classic blues tune, and then tackle the two most essential blues scales of all time—the minor pentatonic, and the Blues scale—your keys to soloing and improvising. Barre Chords open up the entire blues songbook and you'll learn two more blues tunes using them. You'll wrap up the course learning a 12/8 progression, featuring the bluesy 9th chord.

The educators demonstrate all of the key examples over jam tracks (where and when applicable) to simulate a real-world application, in a musical context. Key examples are also tabbed and notated for your practice, reference and study purposes. Take as much time as you need to work through each video guitar lesson before moving on to the next lesson. If you want to dig deeper or wider into any of the topics covered in this core course, check out the rest of the courses in the Blues Learning Path where you'll find more examples, techniques and insight from top TrueFire educators. Grab your guitar and let's get started!

About

Learn how to play guitar with free online guitar lessons and interactive video guitar courses at TrueFire, the world's most comprehensive library of guitar video lessons.
PLAY BLUES GUITAR 2 - Rhythm & Lead Fundamentals

01: PLAY BLUES GUITAR 2 - Rhythm & Lead Fundamentals

Welcome to Play Blues Guitar 2: Rhythm & Lead Fundamentals - the second leg of your TrueFire Learning Path journey towards becoming a solid blues guitar player. This Blues Learning Path core course is presented by 3 top TrueFire educators: Jeff McErlain, Corey Congilio, and Jeff Scheetz.

2 min
Basic Blues Riff  - Lesson 1: Demonstration

02: Basic Blues Riff - Lesson 1: Demonstration

Playing this classic blues riff is a great way to get a feel for different kinds of blues playing. You will be slowly building your blues repertoire with blues songs and riffs as you progress, and getting the essential ones under your fingers is really important.

2 min
Practice Session 1 - Playalong: Slow

03: Practice Session 1 - Playalong: Slow

In this Practice Session you will be playing along with the instructor. Take your time and don't rush through it. Practice this as many times as you need to before moving on.

2 min
12 Bar Blues Riff - Lesson 2: Demonstration

04: 12 Bar Blues Riff - Lesson 2: Demonstration

Of course a 12-bar blues progression is always the end result of learning a cool blues rhythm riff! Practice this one at different tempos so you will be ready for anything!

3 min
Practice Session 2 - Playalong: Slow

05: Practice Session 2 - Playalong: Slow

Your instructor will guide you through this Practice Session. Don't move on until you feel like you are locked in with the tempo and are playing it cleanly.

2 min
Practice Session 3 - Playalong: Band

06: Practice Session 3 - Playalong: Band

Let's have some fun! In this Practice Session we jam with the band! Take your time, don't worry about doing it perfectly the first time, just keep going over it until you have it all down smooth. Then you are ready to move on.

2 min
Minor Pentatonic Scale - Lesson 3: Demonstration

07: Minor Pentatonic Scale - Lesson 3: Demonstration

The minor pentatonic scale is one of the most essential blues soloing tools you can have in your toolbox. It is the basis for most blues improvising and usually the first scale most guitarists learn. Having a good grasp on it is imperative. You want to get this scale "in your ear" as well as "under your fingers".

4 min
Practice Session 4 - Playalong: Slow

08: Practice Session 4 - Playalong: Slow

This playalong is at 55 BPM.

2 min
Blues Soloing Basics - Lesson 4: Demonstration

09: Blues Soloing Basics - Lesson 4: Demonstration

Once you know how to play a scale you are ready to learn soloing techniques. Obviously you can't just simply run up and down the scale, so you need to have some options. Once you learn blues bending, slides, vibrato and more - you can start to put together meaningful solos and melodies.

5 min
Minor Pentatonic Lick 1 - Lesson 5: Demonstration

10: Minor Pentatonic Lick 1 - Lesson 5: Demonstration

Blues licks are the cornerstone of any blues guitarists bag. You won't find a good blues player who doesn't have a big stack of licks they can pull out at any time. This blues lesson uses the minor pentatonic scale to create a lick that is a classic blues staple.

3 min
Practice Session 5 - Playalong: Band

11: Practice Session 5 - Playalong: Band

OK, let's bring the band in. Here is where all that practice pays off. In this Practice Session you just have to lock in with the other instruments and make sure you are staying in the groove.

2 min
Minor Pentatonic Lick 2 - Lesson 6: Demonstration

12: Minor Pentatonic Lick 2 - Lesson 6: Demonstration

The more blues licks you know, the better. This one will show you how to take some of the techniques you have worked on and make them a bit more musical.

2 min
Practice Session 6 - Playalong: Band

13: Practice Session 6 - Playalong: Band

Time to jam with the band! This Practice Session is all about feeling the rhythm. Make sure you do this as many times as you need until you have it down. Then you can move on.

2 min
Putting Licks Together - Lesson 7: Demonstration

14: Putting Licks Together - Lesson 7: Demonstration

Tying licks together is how many solos are built. Blues solos can start from just one simple lick. In this lesson you are working on taking a couple of blues licks and starting to build a solo. Work through it slowly at first and then when you are ready, jam it out with the band!

2 min
Practice Session 7 - Playalong: Band

15: Practice Session 7 - Playalong: Band

Playing with a band is what the ultimate goal is. In this Practice Session you get to do just that! Work on syncing up with the other instruments, become one with the band. Play it as many times as you need and make sure you are in the pocket before you move on.

2 min
Minor Blues Scale - Lesson 8: Demonstration

16: Minor Blues Scale - Lesson 8: Demonstration

Adding the flat 5 to our minor pentatonic scale can give us what is called the blues scale. You have heard this sound in a ton of blues songs, and it's used by players from Stevie Ray Vaughan to Eric Clapton to B.B. King. Learn this scale because you WILL be using it often!

2 min
Practice Session 8 - Playalong: Slow

17: Practice Session 8 - Playalong: Slow

For this Practice Session really focus on trying to play exactly with the instructor. You can go over this as many times as you need in order to really get it down.

2 min
Minor Blues Lick - Lesson 9: Demonstration

18: Minor Blues Lick - Lesson 9: Demonstration

A cool way to use the b5 blues scale. Notice the flat 5 sound is something that might sound kind of weird at first, but the more you hear it, the more you start to identify blues with that sound. Practice this one until you get it down solid.

2 min
Practice Session 9 - Playalong: Band

19: Practice Session 9 - Playalong: Band

Let's jam with the band! Stay in time with the groove, and don't forget to relax! Play through this Practice Session as many times as you need to in order to get comfortable with it and then you can move on.

2 min
Major Barre Chords - Lesson 10: Demonstration

20: Major Barre Chords - Lesson 10: Demonstration

Barre Chords are one of the most essential things you will learn as a guitarist. They allow you to play chords up in different places on the neck, move songs to different keys, and put solos and chords in the same positions. Practice these barre chord shapes until you have them down.

7 min
Barre Chord Progression 1 - Lesson 11: Demonstration

21: Barre Chord Progression 1 - Lesson 11: Demonstration

Work on this barre chord progression until you get it down. This chord progression is based off of Hey Joe by Jimi Hendrix. The chord changes follow the same pattern so once you can play the first two you will have it. Just practice it slowly at first and gradually work it up to speed.

2 min
Practice Session 10 - Playalong: Slow

22: Practice Session 10 - Playalong: Slow

The key to moving on is repeating this Practice Session until you really have it down.

2 min
Practice Session 11 - Playalong: Fast

23: Practice Session 11 - Playalong: Fast

This Practice Session is at 65 BPM. Take your time until you are ready to move on.

2 min
Practice Session 12 - Playalong: Band

24: Practice Session 12 - Playalong: Band

In this Practice Session we are going to play with the band! That is the goal, and here we get to put our playing to the test by keeping up with the band. Repeat this Practice Session as many times as you need to until you have it down.

2 min
Root 6 Minor & 7th Barre Chords - Lesson 12: Demonstration

25: Root 6 Minor & 7th Barre Chords - Lesson 12: Demonstration

These are the Root 6 minor and dominant 7th barre chords. You can find these in a ton of songs and chord progressions. Memorize the fingerings and practice slowly moving them to different places on the neck. You will find certain chords sound great together - use this to help you develop your ear as well.

3 min
Root 5 Minor & 7th Barre Chords - Lesson 13: Demonstration

26: Root 5 Minor & 7th Barre Chords - Lesson 13: Demonstration

These are the Root 5 minor and dominant 7th barre chords. You can also find these in a ton of songs and chord progressions, often along with the root 6 barre chords. Memorize the fingerings and practice slowly moving them to different places on the neck.

2 min
Barre Chord Progression 2 - Lesson 14: Demonstration

27: Barre Chord Progression 2 - Lesson 14: Demonstration

This chord progression is based off of the Gary Moore version of "Still Got The Blues". A great song with some cool and unconventional chords. Take your time with the chord changes and pay attention to keeping them clean and getting all the notes to ring out.

3 min
Practice Session 13 - Playalong: Slow

28: Practice Session 13 - Playalong: Slow

Really listen to how the instructor plays in this Practice Session. Don't worry if it takes you a few times, and if you need to go back, that is fine. The important thing is that you want to be able to play through this at this tempo several times without mistakes, and then you are ready to move on.

2 min
Practice Session 14 - Playalong: Band

29: Practice Session 14 - Playalong: Band

Let's have some fun! In this Practice Session we jam with the band! Take your time, don't worry about doing it perfectly the first time, just keep going over it until you have it all down smooth. Then you are ready to move on.

2 min
Movable 9th Chord Shape - Lesson 15: Demonstration

30: Movable 9th Chord Shape - Lesson 15: Demonstration

Ninth chords like C9 and D9 are blues staples. There is no place this is seen more than playing a slow blues. Work through this classic blues chord progression and make sure you get the chord switching down smoothly.

5 min
Practice Session 15 - Playalong: Slow

31: Practice Session 15 - Playalong: Slow

In this Practice Session you should focus on playing in time, playing it cleanly, and getting all of the movements smooth. Play through it as many times as you need before you move on.

2 min
Practice Session 16 - Playalong: Band

32: Practice Session 16 - Playalong: Band

OK, let's bring the band in. Here is where all that practice pays off. In this Practice Session you just have to lock in with the other instruments and make sure you are staying in the groove.

2 min
PLAY BLUES GUITAR 2 - Wrap Up & Next Steps

33: PLAY BLUES GUITAR 2 - Wrap Up & Next Steps

Congratulations on completing this core course in your learning path! When you're ready to advance your skills further, dive into the next core course in your TrueFire learning path. Practice smart. Play hard!

0 min