Blues Guitar for Beginners

Blues Guitar for Beginners - Where to Start

Blues guitar for beginners is one of the most common topics in "Internet guitar" today. Why? It's simple - blues guitar is fast becoming one of the most preferred styles for beginning guitarists to learn. There is no shortage of instructional materials available in both print and video format, but for beginners it can be intimidating to know where to head for instruction. Let’s take a quick look at what is necessary for the beginning blues guitarist to learn.

Most guitarists begin by learning chords - three or more notes played simultaneously - and blues guitarists are no exception. Believe it or note, you can learn to play literally hundreds of songs with just three basic chords, though you probably want to learn more so you can learn to play the songs in different keys. Still, you can easily start with just a handful of chords.


Once you have learned a few chords and have learned some tunes, it’s worth your time to learn some basic scales. Even a beginning-level blues guitarist can master a basic blues scale in a very short time.


Once you’ve gotten a few chords under your belt, you want to learn a few tunes from beginning to end so that you can actually start to play with others or play along with your favorite artists. You’ll be surprised how many of your favorite songs consist of just a handful of chords (seriously - often just three), so it’s not a huge stretch to add some repertoire after you’ve been playing for a short time.


Even if you're just a beginning blus guitarist, it's worthwhile to get some basic blues guitar licks under your fingers. If you don't know what a "lick" is (most beginners don't, so it's okay), it's a short, memorized musical phrase that you can use as part of a solo or fill. Players learn licks several different ways - you can learn them from fellow guitarists, from dedicated licks lessons, or from transcribing solos from recordings (which is how most players learned licks in the past). 

Private Lessons

If you're a beginning blues guitarist, you should seriously consider taking private lessons. While there's nothing wrong with using YouTube or other video lessons (there are some really good ones out there), it's hard to beat lessons with a private instructor who can give you immediate feedback on your tone, technique, and feel. Playing along with another player is also vitally important for your development as a musician, and an instructor is a great way to progress in this way.

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