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Michael Johnson >> Contemporary Blues Guitarists >>


Teacher: Hello class, we have a very cool lesson in the style of Robben Ford! Robben started his career playing many styles like funk, jazz, fusion and later moved to the blues in his career which happened to be his first love. Robben is also a 4 time Grammy Nominee and played with some top musicians like George Harrison, Miles Davis, David Sanborn, Michael McDonald and more! Listen to the lesson sample of what you will learn:

Lesson Sample - Lowband - 900k

Lesson Sample - Highband - 3 Meg

Teacher: Let's start of with the opening riff you hear in the lesson sample:

Part 1 - Intro


Part 1 - Intro

Teacher:
The first riff starts with a C7, playing a chord with a slight hammer-on from a Maj3 to a sus4 note, Here's the jam track:

Looping Jam Track 1 - Lowband

Teacher: The best method for playing this riff is to hole down the 1st finger on the 8th fret - 1st string (C), hold the 4th finger on the 2nd string -11th fret (Bb) and hammer from the 2nd finger to 3rd on the 3rd string. Let's jump to the first rhythm pattern in C:

Part 1 - Rhythm 1


Part 1 - Rhythm 1

Teacher: This rhythm pattern follows the bass line of this section, kind of a walking bass pattern in C (I), then to F (IV) and to a Eb. Here's a jam track for the rhythm:

Looping Jam Track 1b - Lowband

Teacher: This section kind of reminds me of an old blues standard that the Blues Brothers would play. It's altered a bit from the standard I, IV, V. Let's play a few lead licks over the rhythm, our first lick will use the C Minor Pentatonic scale pattern:

Part 1 - Solo 1


Part 1 - Solo 1

Teacher: This lick starts by sliding into the C Min Pentatonic scale pattern using your 1st finger on the 2nd string (B). you then play the 1st string (E) - 11th fret with the 4th finger. Here's the C Minor Pentatonic scale that you are using for most of this lick:

C Minor Pentatonic Scale


Teacher: Now the second time around through the rhythm pattern you alter the lick a little.

Part 1 - Solo 2


Part 1 - Solo 2

Teacher: Notice in the last lick you move higher into the 2nd box pattern of the C Minor Pentatonic scale.

C Minor Pentatonic - Box 1 & 2


Teacher: Let's jump to another rhythm pattern using a funk pattern in E.

Part 2 - Rhythm 1


Part 2 - Rhythm 1

Teacher: This rhythm uses a walking type run as well that follows the bass. You start in E using a rhythmic pattern then move to G, A, C and then D to Eb. The Eb is a transitional note that leads you back to the E (I) of the progression. Here's the jam track:

Looping Jam Track 2 - Lowband

Teacher: The jam track will give you a better idea of the rhythm pattern. Now this section reminds me of something Jeff Beck would play during his "Blow by Blow" and "Wired" era. You can use blues licks over these lines that sound very cool when all the parts are played together. Let's jump to a few of the melodic licks that you can play over this rhythm. You use the E Minor Pentatonic scale pattern for these licks.

Part 2 - Solo 1


Part 2 - Solo 1

Teacher: You actually use the 5th E Minor box pattern, which is just before the main pattern.

E Minor Pentatonic Box 1 & 5


Teacher: Here's another lick:

Part 2 - Solo 2


Part 2 - Solo 2

Teacher: This lick uses the E Minor Pentatonic pattern the runs horizontally across all the box patterns.

E Minor Pentatonic Scale


Teacher: Here are more licks you can play:

Part 2 - Solo 3


Part 2 - Solo 3

Teacher: this is an interesting series of licks, you play each grouping over the G, A, C and D to Eb chord changes. Playing over chords like this can make basic licks like this sound more melodic. The key when playing over the jam track is to remember when to shift over the chord changes. Notice the intervals at the end of the phrase how they play over the D and Eb using a rhythmic pattern. Let's jump to the next section. For this next part you play a standard blues riff using D.

Part 3 - Rhythm 1


Part 3 - Ryhthm 1

Teacher: In this progression you start with D (I), then a walking line to A (V) and then to G (IV). Here's a jam track you can practice over:

Looping Jam Track 3 - Lowband

Teacher: The riff basically follows the bass as well, this lays the rhythm for the solo licks I will give you next in the D Minor Pentatonic.

Part 3 - Solo 1


Part 3 - Solo 1

Teacher: This lick starts in the 2nd box of the D Minor Pentatonic pattern and back to box 1 of D. Here's the next lick:

Part 3 - Solo 2


Part 3 - Solo 2

Teacher: Here's the last lick:

Part 3 - Solo 3



Part 3 - Solo 3

Teacher: Thanks, well this end our lesson. Hope to see you all next week!

Teacher: Bye!

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