I feel like trying something totally different from what I usually play. Since I started playing guitar 6 months ago I have just been playing Rock and Metal and I feel like expanding a bit. Trouble is, I have no idea where to go. To be totally honest, I have never heard a blues song in my life. And particular artists or songs to listen?
What is a good beginner song to try in that genre? What sort of techniques are often used? (E.g, lots of legato, bending, vibrato)
Thanks in advance.

EDIT: Whats the difference between Jazz and Blues?
Last edited by GoldfishMoon at Aug 17, 2009,
-Listen to Stevie Ray Vaughan.
-Learn the blues scale and use it to improvise over 12-Bar blues.
Quote by GoldfishMoon
What sort of techniques are often used? (E.g, lots of legato, bending, vibrato)

Most of the point of blues (and the difference between it and jazz) is to avoid this very kind of thinking and play purely by feel. Most blues players just play slow lines in pentatonic scales.

Blues is all about the feel. Don't even concern yourself with technique in the slightest.
Q: Favourite Pink Floyd song?
A: The one where they get wicked high and play Emin and A for an hour.
But if you really wanna know, Vibrato and bending are HUGE in blues. They're great ways to bring expression into your phrasing.
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I have a Pro Junior.
Almost the same thing. Sort of.

But I do love BJ's. Great amps.
Everyone likes BJ's.

To some extent that's true, but if you're just starting playing blues, I'd recommend learning to play some famous blues songs, just to get a feel for it. However, what really helped me was learning em by ear, as opposed to tab. Gets you a really good feel for the songs (with the exception of certain chords and stuff).

The first blues song I learned all the way through was Pride and Joy. It worked great for me, and has so many blues associated-licks, that if you learn to play it, it'll be a huge improvement in your bluesiness.



and if that's too tough to start with




Good luck!
-Saga strat, modded with guitarfetish p/ups
-epiphone abomination (don't know what it's called) with scalloped neck and power rails gfs p/up
-Fender Twin Reverb
-Blues screamer pedal
-Boss Turbo overdrive
Stevie ray vaughn, eric clapton, and gary moore are my favorite blues guitarists, everyone else sounds kind of the same and kind of not my style to me. It's not really technique as much as blues scales and pentatonic scales. If you know those scales and know what key of scales people are playing in songs that your listening to, then you can just play your own licks over them while your listening to develop your "blues" sound. But first you should learn to play some songs from those people i mentioned note for note. just youtube them. slash and ACDC use a lot of blues licks to make a bluesy tinged rock sound.

Jazz is nowhere near blues. It is a lot harder. Like you are years and years away from understanding the theory for it. it's all about modes and fast changes for both scales and chords that make your head hurt to try and reason them out. My favorite jazz guitarist is Wes Montgomry and his song four by six. He's cool cus he was a genious who couldn't even read music. he did it all by ear. only other person I know of who couldn't read music and played by ear was jimi hendrix and jimi is another good blues player I forgot about but he plays rock mostly you'll have to find an album by him called jimi blues to find his really bluesy stuff. it has the songs red house and born under a bad sign. Jazz is epitomized by charlie parker band and coltrane, though. well, I just wrote all this cus I'm putting off doing some application I'm filling out online so I'm going to get back to it. hope this helps.
Really General Overview:
Blues: Major/minor progressions, soloing using minor pentatonic/blues scale/natural minor, bends and vibrato, focused on "feel" and phrasing rather than speed.

Jazz: Generally incorporates usage of more chords (such as 7ths, dominants etc) and is focused more on playing runs and licks around chords and uses passing tones etc.
I'm shocked that nobody mentiones Led Zeppelin, they are know as a hard-blues band.
I listened to Led Zeppelin, Eric Clapton and Jimi Hendrix. There is a new Belgian band that also makes modern blues: The Black Box Revelation

Gravity Blues

High On A Wire

Never Alone/Always Together

You should check these guys out, they're really good!

What I did to get that 'Bluesy playing' is just play a good blues song and jam with it, my alltime favourite is Red House by Jimi Hendrix.
Just listen to some blues, then after you've listened to a fair bit pick something to learn and learn it - you should be able to tell for yourself by listening what techniques are being used.

Here's a few bluesy songs to start with...just listen to them all a good few times before even worrying about playing them, just get a feel for how they work musically.

Need Your Love So Bad - Fleetwood Mac
Black Magic Woman - Fleetwood Mac/Santana
I Can't Quit You Baby - Led Zeppelin
Red House - Jimi Hendrix
Stormy Monday Blues - T-Bone Walker (the man who invented the whole "guitar player as frontman" thing)
The Thrill Is Gone - BB King
Rock Me Baby - BB ing
Hoochie Coochie Man - Muddy Waters
Texas Flood - Stevie Ray Vaughan
Actually called Mark!

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Last edited by steven seagull at Aug 17, 2009,
Robert Johnson
Blind "melon" Jefferson
Willie Dixon
T-bone walker
Delta Blues!!!!!!!

edit: don't forget that chords are VERY important in blues
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Last edited by loinmute at Aug 17, 2009,
Start on stuff like Robert Johnson, Lightning Hopkins and BB King. Will you be playing straight blues or incorporating it into your rock music? If you do mix the blues stuff with rock, start listening to stuff like Stevie Ray Vaughan, Eric Clapton, Angus Young and Joe bonamassa. Playing blues in your rock music gives it more depth.
I'm not overly keen on recommending spending money, but...

Buy "Blues You Can Use" by John Ganapes. Work through it (thoroughly, don't skip stuff), et voila, that's the basics. I've no idea what standard you play at, but I'd guess that unless you're totally amazing for a six month player, it's unlikely to be (overall) too easy or way too hard. Some of the practice pieces are a bit cheesey, but if you put the effort in to seeing what he's on about regarding scales and chord progressions, it doesn't take all that long to start making sense.
Oh, now I've gone and spilled my tea. This really won't do at all.
Start off simple.....

learn the basic shapes of the 5 boxes found in the minor pentatonic scale

Start with A (nice and simple and you will be able to cover a good section of the fret board easily

Download/look on youtube for Backing Track Blues in A

Play the 5 boxes over the backing track (it will all sound awesome)

Over time start messing about with virbrato etc

Emjoy (worked for me)