Want To Learn To Play Blues Guitar? Know Blues Music History First
Before you spend some time learning how to play blues guitar, it is worth to know a brief history of such first. By doing so, it will help you to have a much better connection with the piece you’re creating from your guitar.
Some of the blues artists have found success in setting a name for themselves either by creating songs or performing new styles that made a long lasting influence on subsequent generations of blues artists. As a matter of fact, these early success that they have made set the important characteristics that has now been known as blues music.
You may not believe it, blues music is a cyclical music that forms musical lyric, pattern or even chord progression and then repeated throughout the song. As for the basic structure and form, it’s commonly thought to be a reflection of call and response format of African music that is initially introduced by slaves and several other field workers.
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The early examples of blues forms weren’t standardized whether you believe it or not. From chord progressions, patterns and forms as well were all left to individual performer to decide. However as time pass by, some forms emerged as favorites among artists. There are performers who have garnered enough popularity to be very influential within ranks of blues musicians. And for this reason, throughout the period of 1920s to 1930s, the 12 bar blues has spread widely across the music industry.
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Some other chord progressions of course are still deemed as blues including the 8 and 16 bar forms. Normally, early blues musicians are utilizing odd numbered bars similar to 9 or 11 bar structures but not as standardized forms. But instead, the odd measured forms were used basically as improvisational manner as the music or lyrics dictated.
Dominant chords itself are major characteristic of blues music as it is used extensively. Most of the time, blues melodies are distinguished by the use of blues notes the flattened third, fifth as well as seventh of diatonic major scale of keys. In fact, the combination of the harmonic structures and the major chords too plus the minor scale notes as melodic and ornamentations are creating iconic and distinctive sounds of the blues. There are some occasions that blues notes are bent or slid into, instrumentally or vocally and specific rhythm or phrasing of this movement, which sets a distinctive individuals aspect of the blues style.
The real purpose of blues notes is to create artistic expression and create interesting variations that’s away from the standard scale degrees and not to mention, to have a dramatic flourishes at the important parts of the song.