Hot answers tagged

61

There are a ton of easy and great-sounding substitutions, and you can use them in the turnaround or anywhere else you want. Here are a few of the most common: ii-V sub: Substitute ii for IV, so that you have a ii-V turnaround. For example, if you're playing in the key of C, the V chord is G7 and the ii chord is Dm7. So instead of C-F-G7, play C-Dm7-G7. ...


19

Here are quite a few standard substitutions take from page 36 of the free PDF you can download here: http://www.jazzbooks.com/mm5/download/FQBK-handbook.pdf


19

I think there's an element of pragmatism to this. Some people are out for what they can get, but they also have an eye on what they could lose. Let's say you wrote Stack Exchange Blues, you're collecting royalties from it, and you hear my song Downvotes Got Me Cryin', which you believe steals enough to perhaps warrant a law suit. Well, you're going to have ...


14

There seems to be a general confusion here. Everything you can play or imagine is possible. Theory is a means to describe music, but music is by no way bound to any theory whatsoever. Major scales are typically not a good way to describe (or play) Blues. Better suited are scales that are aptly named "blues scales" (see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/...


12

That blues note is nebulous. It can be, and is, anywhere between a minor 3 and a major 3. Listen to blues players, and you'll hear it bent fully from min. to maj., or just hinted at with a tiny flick from minor upwards. The listener probably completes the bend in his mind's ear. It sometimes gets played as a straight major that gets wobbled down to minor and ...


11

Time. It is far better to hit the wrong note at the right time than the right note at the wrong time.


10

You confusion is coming from mixing "common practice" harmony theory with pop music. Both of the songs you linked are in the key of D. We know this because the D chord and melody notes clearly have tonic function, meaning they are used as a harmonic "home base", and the other chords played are designed to create a tension that resolves to D. If this was a ...


9

A bass player can easily be the timekeeper for a jazz combo without drums. I'm a bit confused by your question, specifically-- Is it fairly easy to replace substantial portions with improvised walking-bass style lines and still retain the percussive properties of the bass sound? The properties of the timbre are going to be up to your bassist, but on ...


9

The Hammond organ is what is called an analog additive synthesizer (see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Additive_synthesis) and it works by adding together sine waves that are multiples of the base frequency. A sine wave alone sounds like a whistle or a dull flute, but the more you add up the more interesting the sound can get. The Hammond organ features ...


9

Tim is correct that it's about the 3rd, 5th, and 7th, but I don't agree that in the blues they are flattened by exactly one semi-tone. That is an approximation when writing down the notes or when playing them on a piano, but on any instrument on which in-between notes can be played, these notes will be intonated differently. Especially the 3rd and the 7th ...


9

What you probably mean by minor and major blues scales are the two following scales (with root C): C Eb F Gb G Bb (minor blues) C D Eb E G A (major blues) These are just the minor and major pentatonic scales with one note added. The minor pentatonic scale gets a b5 (Gb), and the major pentatonic scale gets a b3 (Eb), both to make those pentatonic scales ...


8

The three chords you have identified are known as the Tonic (I), Subdominant (IV), and Dominant chords of the traditional major scale. By in large for over 300 years the IV and V chords have been used extensively in western music to reinforce the tonality of the tonic. This is accomplished by the resolution of tension created by dissonance. The V to I ...


8

A lot of blues numbers are built around the 12-bar sequence. This is, in its simplest form, I I I I IV IV I I V IV I V. Put this in, say, C,and the chord sequence is four bars of C, two bars of F, two bars of C, one of G, one of F, one of C, and the turnaround chord of G. Each of these sounds more bluesy with the added b7. So the first C7 chord will contain ...


8

That notation (1 b3 4 b5 5 b7) is used to relate a scale to the major (ionian) scale. It shows which scale degrees should be flattened or sharpened (and by how much) relative to the major scale. So, you should start with E major scale, not E minor or E phrygian (natural notes from E to E: E F G A B C D). E major scale is of course 1=E 2=F# 3=G# 4=A 5=B 6=C# ...


8

12 bar blue sequences - poffle.com shows at least a dozen. The blues sequence doesn't have to be 12 bars long, it's just that this is the commonest. 8 and 16 are other well used ones. Basically putting 7ths onto each chord will help to bluesify a sequence. Or 9ths, which sound more jazzy. A lot of varieties use 'passing' chords such as diminished to get from ...


8

The archetypal bluesy sound comes from bending and inflecting the notes within certain ranges. When soloing, I personally play the blues scale on guitar as a pseudo-pentatonic something like this (C tonic): C a 'window' around Eb, covering the range down to D and up to E. F, bending up a little (maybe not as far as Gb) G Bb, with scope to bend up a little (...


8

Minor pent works well over major chords, but not vice versa. Add the 'blue' note to both maj. and min. pents for a little spice. Try the full major scale notes on major songs. Try the full minor scales (3 of them!) on minor songs. Use the Mixolydian mode for major songs. Use the Dorian mode for minor songs. Use the Lydian mode for major songs. On major songs ...


7

This question comes across as a shopping recommendation, but since we don't do those on Music.se I'm going to stop short of recommending specific books. Blues is a broad genre of music -- for example the Chicago Blues of Howlin' Wolf is quite different from the Delta Blues of Leadbelly or the Texas Blues of Stevie Ray Vaughan. We don't know which of those ...


7

A chromatic scale is a scale starting at the root note where every note on the scale is a semi-tone apart. On a piano if you were to start at one note and hit every key up to the octave, you'd have a chromatic scale. Example: C Chromatic: C C# D D# E F F# G G# A A# B C D Chromatic D D# E F F# G G# A A# B C C# D E Chromatic E F F# G G# A A# B C C# D D# E ...


7

Listening to some Ali Farka Toure in order to have something fresh in my head to comment. First, I'd say that the 12-bar progression we're all familiar with is absent, replaced with repeating measures that are more a part of funk, although the blues history videos seem to tie to John Lee Hooker. You don't get the familiar shuffle, either, and I'm actually ...


7

Are you asking how to learn blues guitar or how to explain to people that you want to learn blues guitar? Your question seems to be asking the latter, but your title suggests the former. When most people lump guitar playing into classical and rock; or classical, rock, and folk; they are not really making a distinction between the musical styles as much as ...


7

The number one thing you should worry about is developing your ear. That's probably 70% - 80% of a professional musician. So... Transcribe songs you like (and some you don't) and practice them, especially the parts that give you a hard time. Use a metronome for songs that are too fast. Play them slow and gradually increase speed.


7

Just to add to these answers, a blues walking bass line tends to me much more repetitive and pattern oriented. They're much more likely to play the same major pentatonic pattern over the progression throughout the whole tune. For Jazz, the lines tend to be more improvisational, different every time around and moving more with the music rather than having a ...


7

Blues is a language, with grammar and vocabulary. The difference between learning to play the blues and learning to play a blues is the same as the difference between learning to speak a language and learning just some words or phrases in that language. In the vocabulary instead of words you are using scales and chords. In the grammar instead of order of ...


6

There's a very good YouTube based instructor named Justin Sandercoe. He has a huge collection of lessons and resources available including many that are focused on the blues. All of his material is free, though there is some available for purchase.


6

Since the comments ask for a more complete answer from me, I'm going to give it a shot. Most people I know call this technique double stops. In the case of Soul Man, the double stops are mostly based on a 6th interval, starting with a (sorta) outline of an E7: |-----4----2-2----7---9---11---12-| |---------------------------------| |---2/4--4/2-2--/7---/...



Only top voted, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible