Intro to Blues


“The blues are the roots; everything else is the fruits”

-Willie Dixon.

Other than jazz, blues is the only true American music form. 

With it’s simple chord progressions and modified scales the blues have strongly influenced almost all popular music.

The origins of the the blues are closely related to Afro-American spirituals and have their roots in the southern United States. When the blues first took hold musicians who chose to play them over gospel or church music would take the chance of being ostracised. Even though gospel and blues music used similar techniques: call-and-response, blue notes and slide guitars, blues was considered to be the devil’s music. Although blues started in the fields of the rural south; within a few years many southern blacks moved north to Chicago in search of better jobs. Some of the more creative bluesmen like Muddy Waters and Howlin Wolf had moved to Chicago and added electric guitars and drums to their bands so that they could be heard over the crowd noise when playing in the juke joints and clubs. This electrifying of the guitar was the start of blues music as we know it today.

Click the guitar lessons link above for more blues guitar lessons.