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Golden Age of Guitar Instrumentals - Thursday - Week 1

The Roots
Today's lick, the third of the roots section, is from the jump blues genre. This genre flourished in the 1940s and greatly influenced the electric blues, boogie-woogie, and early rock-and-roll and R&B music of the 1950s. Jump blues is closely related to swing jazz but is earthier in feel and simpler harmonically. The greatest guitar practioner of jump blues was T-Bone Walker (1910-1975); who, along with Charlie Christian, defined the first era of electric guitar especially for rock and blues guitarists. This lick contains several notable T-Bone elements. It is played in G with a shuffle feel and has a call-and-response riff construction. This lick has aspects of both G minor and G major. You can think of it as G Minor Pentatonic with an added B natural or as a G Mixolydian with a purposeful A sharp in the melody. In the latter case the A sharp acts a leading tone to B. This device of approaching crucial tones from a half step below is prevalent in blues melody. Note the use of parallel thirds slid chromatically at the beginning and end of the phrase. This lick is situated comfortably in the basic "blues box" at the 3rd fret.

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

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