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British Blues Rock - Friday - Week 1

First Wave

Our first lick is a classic blues-based rock phrase that pays homage to the Chuck Berry influence on early British blues-rockers. Highly appropriate for this time of year, this is a "back to school" line that points to the blues and swing roots of rock `n' roll. Our lick is in D and can be played over a D major or D7 chord. It is situated in the 10th position "blues box" and makes use of several familiar stylistic features. Note the raked articulation which begins the lick and the unison slurred riff which propels the phrase along with a syncopated gait. The lick concludes with a series of double stops in parallel thirds, another strong allusion to the Berry style. Also noteworthy is the bluesy use of the minor third, F, and the minor seventh, C, in the phrase. This lick was played on an arch-top electric guitar plugged into a Vox AC-30 combo amplifier. This setup was common in the early days of the British Invasion. George Harrison (Gretsch Country Gentleman) of the Beatles and both Keith Richard (Harmony Meteor) and Brian Jones (Gretsch Anniversary) of the Rolling Stones used similar equipment. The mating of woody American hollow bodies with the throaty mid range of Vox amps imparted a unique timbre to the borrowed and mutated blues-rock licks of the British Invasion.

Learn this lick and practice with this jam track
Skill Level: guitar pick onguitar pick onguitar pick offguitar pick off
Key: D


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