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12 Bar Riff Variations and Approach chords

The Blues Guitar Lessons

More spices for your blues store, get them rhythm parts all tasty!

As well as there being many different chord sequence variations, there are also many different ways of playing the good ol' "chunka chunka" riff! This lesson is going to take you through many of the cool variations you can apply to any of the different chord sequences to add interest and to stop you getting bored if you are jamming with someone who takes and extra long solo!!

It's important to experiment with each one, don't hurry through them all, better to have a few variations you can play really well than loads that sound a bit pants. You should be familiar with the concept as it was used way back in the Beginners Course, might be worth revisiting if you don't remember!

Watch The Video Lesson


Backing Track

Here is the Blues in Bb Backing track for you to practice with! You'll probably want to use the chart below to make sure you are getting the correct variations - we're using a "Long V" but otherwise it's standard.

Blues Rhythm Track 4 by justinguitar

You can download the 13 track set of mp3's for this series for £5 (approx $8) (Blues Rhythm Guitar Mp3) - they are also included on the Blues Rhythm Guitar DVD for £15 (approx $25) of this series which comes 3 bonus lessons (44 minutes worth!) and a pdf booklet.


12 Bar Blues in D


So many ways to explore this idea... the best is just to take it one at a time and explore it until you feel comfortable and then more on to the next. Summary of the concepts looked at:

• Little Finger variations
• Sliding into chords on + after 4
• Open string / muted links (to help you make the changes fast enough)
• The Open chord note add thing on + after 4
• Using barre to play the 7th rather than reaching far with your little finger!


BLUES DVDs CDs and eBooks Available



Lesson ID: BL-204