Devil Got My Woman

Posted by aguitarlesson on 23rd September 2010 in Blues Guitar Lessons

Devil Got My Woman

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Neither Vangauard records nor Skip James had high commercial expectations for Devil Got My Woman, when it was released in 1968.  After all James’s superb debut, Today! sold poorly two years earlier, despite widespread critical praise. Interest in country blues was fading. In fact, by the time Devil Got My Woman made it to record stores, the album had all but disappeared.

What had happened, of course, was the birth of blues rock and the move by many traditional blues players to change their sound to sound more like the music of the times. The market for the blues was strong in the late sixties. Many rock fans, inspired by Paul Butterfields Blues Band, Cream, Led Zeppelin, the Allman Brothers Band, and other groups that built their sound from a solid blues foundation, embraced the blues with a new enthusiasm.

Muddy Waters and Howlin Wolf played rock venues and rock festivals and recorded with rock musicians. Johnny Winter brought whit blues into the rock mainstream. B.B. King had a pop hit with “The Thrill Is Gone”.

About the only bluesmen not reaping the rewards of this new blues craze were the country artist whose music lacked the volume and thumping back beat heard in electric blues. Despite Cream’s remake of his song “I’m So Glad.” Skip James and Devil Got My Woman never really stood a chance of attracting hoards of rock fans in 1968, Skip James played the same kind of style on Devil Got My Woman that he did when he first recorded it for Paramount label back in 1931.

Guitar Lessons for Beginners: Know What You Want to Learn

Posted by aguitarlesson on 22nd May 2010 in Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar


By Bruce Lamb

A guitar is probably the most popular string instrument of today. One common thing about modern teenagers who want are creative, have an artistic setup or just want to be ‘cool’; is that they love guitar as a playing instrument. The guitar has generally six strings and is popularly one of the two broad classifications: acoustic and electric, though it can have much more strings attached to it and can come in various types such as a Hawaiian guitar and it can have many mechanisms such as a double neck guitar etc.

But those are for advanced users! Typically a guitar may look stylish, trendy or cool, but guitar lessons for beginners can be tricky. If you want to learn to play guitar for a living or simply as a hobby and you are serious about it, you need to know that playing guitar is not easy, contrary to what it looks on the screen for the greatest guitar players playing it as a piece of cake.


In case of guitar lessons for beginners, it is important to understand the general construction of a guitar. The guitar has three main parts: the body, the neck and the strings; although number of strings, length of the neck and size of the body tends to vary from guitar to guitar. Strings are attached on the fretboard (a piece of wood on the neck) and some frets run orthogonal to the strings; while each fret produces different sounds. Read the rest of this entry »

Charley Patton the Founder of the Delta Blues- The Legend Lives On

Posted by aguitarlesson on 20th May 2010 in Blues Guitar Lessons

By Bruce Lamb


Though he used to write his name as Charlie Patton, yet popularly called Charley, is considered as the father and proponent of the American Delta Blues genre of music. This style is one of the oldest renditions of blues style of music and hence it made Charley Patton as one of the oldest known figures of American Popular Music. Said to be been born in the year 1887 and have died in 1934, Charlie Patton is still considered one of the most influential figures of American music.

Charley and the Early Years of Delta Blues: The Origin of the Genre

Charlie Patton was born in Hinds County, Mississippi and had passed most of his life in the Mississippi Delta. He did most of his work on Delta Blues style from here and for that reason this style was also known as the Mississippi Delta Blues style of music. Most of that area was covered with extremely fertile land, yet poverty was rampant. The socio-economic condition became the soul of this genre. The cigar box guitar, guitar and harmonica formed the base for this genre’s music.

The Unique style that separated it from other country blues: The Differentiating Factor

Although there was not much of a subsequent rhythmic difference between Charlie Patton’s style and other country blues to have originated at the same time. Most of the areas had the same cultural background, yet Mississippi Delta Blues stood out because of its harmonic structure and theme that talked exhaustively about travelling musicians’ life, sexuality and life the delta.  Women also had a part in this style, but only a few made names for themselves. Read the rest of this entry »

Muddy Waters-The Houchie Coochie Man

Posted by aguitarlesson on 25th April 2010 in Free guitar lessons

By Bruce Lamb

McKinley Morganfield, born on April 4, 1913 and died on April 30, 1983, more popularly known among his fans as Muddy Waters, was a reputed musician of the American blues genre. Muddy Waters was generally acknowledged as “the Father of Chicago blues”.

Muddy Waters debuted on harmonica but by the age of 17 had started playing the guitar at a number of parties where he emulated two very reputed blues artists Robert Johnson and Son House. Qualities for which he got instantly noticed were his rich baritone, his ability to add dark coloration to his tone and his wonderful ability to add a lot of embellishments to the music he played.

The real success phase for Muddy Waters the Original Huochie Coochie Man began with an association with the Chess brothers Phill and Leonard Chess who had formed a music group known as Aristocrat.

In the year 1948, his music on “I Feel Like Going Home” and “I Can’t Be Satisfied” were huge hits and that was the point in time when he began to climb the popularity charts in the clubs. After this, soon, Aristocrat rebranded their name to Chess Records and instantly, Muddy Waters the Original Huochie Coochie Man’s signature tune which happened to be “Rollin’ Stone” became a huge hit among its fans.

By the time September 1953 arrived, Muddy Waters the Original Huochie Coochie Man had started recording in association with one of the more acknowledged blues groups ever in history: This group comprised Elga Edmonds who played on drums, Otis Spann who played on piano, Little Walter Jacobs who played on harmonica; and lastly, Jimmy Rogers who strummed the guitar. Read the rest of this entry »

Robert Johnson The King Of The Delta Blues Singers

Posted by aguitarlesson on 11th April 2010 in Learn to Play Guitar for Beginners

The complete recordings of Robert Johnson ranks as the most essential of all blues cds because it contains the greatest blues ever recorded. Without question Robert Johnson has been the most fascinating and revered artist in the music’s hundred year history. He isn’t just “King of the Delta Blues Singers” the title of the early sixties LPs on which these songs were first reissued. Johnson’s music was originally released as 78′s in the late 1930′s. Robert Johnson is King of the Blues Period.
When American music historians converse. Johnson’s name will be mentioned in the same sentence as the names Louis Armstrong, Jimmie Rodgers, Duke Ellington, Charlie Parker, Woody Guthrie, Hanks Williams, Elvis Presley, Bob Dylan, and twentieth-century music masters whose work has helped define the scope and breadth of these giants ultimately leads to a better understanding of the American music tradition. A good place to start is with Robert Johnson.
  Read the rest of this entry »

Traveling With A Guitar And Luggage What To Pack Can Be Problematic

Posted by aguitarlesson on 7th January 2010 in Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar

By Bruce Lamb

Most airlines are now charging for the first checked bag a minimum of $25.00 and the second $35 and third bag is charged much more so customers are bringing bigger bags more than ever on board with them so these days the overhead compartments are at a premium. It’s a gamble traveling with a guitar and each guitar traveler will have to play there own hand by asking them selves these questions.

1. Q. How many bags including my guitar will I travel with?

A. Do the math two checked bags can cost you now $60 depending on the airline
carry on space is getting harder to get.

2. Q. Will the airline allow my guitar on board in a gig bag and will there be enough

A. The airline my have a policy to allow your guitar on board when you call them up
but it only depends if there is enough room, or how many regular bags are in the
overhead at the time you board. It is entirely up to the crew members on the plane.
They may take your guitar and gate check it which means your guitar goes onto the
pile of luggage below. Most damage to guitars on planes is from being damaged
due to excess weight on top of the guitar pushing the top or bottom of the case in
cracking the back or sound board of the guitar.

3. Q. Will they let me on with my hard shell case a bigger gamble? Read the rest of this entry »

Get The Most Out Of Your Guitar Music Lessons

Posted by aguitarlesson on 15th December 2009 in Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar

By Bruce Lamb

Taking guitar music lessons can cost a lot of money and making sure you are getting your money’s worth is necessary. Learning a new instrument like guitar or taking vocal lessons will benefit you or your child but here are some tips on how to ensure you are getting the most out of your lessons.

Do make sure you are choosing a reputable school or instructor. It’s true with the saying, “You get what you pay for.” If you find individuals advertising their musical expertise teaching their lessons from their home studio, it’s ideal to ask for references. As a business, they should be able to lead you to clients who can give you their experience taking lessons with them. It’s a safe move especially if you have never heard of them before.

Going through the yellow pages or searching online will give you a head start on what lessons or schools have been running for awhile now. They usually have specialized programs and have been in business practically forever. When you talk to them over the phone, they are knowledgeable and helpful. Music schools that have a long standing can usually be costly and their lessons run year long.

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Trying To Make It In Music May Depend On What You Choose as Your Instrument

Posted by aguitarlesson on 16th November 2009 in Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar

By Bruce Lamb

With the diversification of instruments and musical styles, it stands to reason that there are an equally diverse amount of possible gigs. What instrument you play may limit your success. Some of the more basic ones will be covered here but do not limit your horizons by not trying out other avenues that may present themselves. I will mention several types of instruments in the following article. If any are unfamiliar to you, may I suggest a trip to your local library where taped samples of the various styles and sounds may be observed.

The Guitar is now possibly one of the more requested and versatile instruments that can play so many types and styles of music. Most commonly used in restaurants, cocktail lounges, parties, one-man-shows, and any type of show where the guitarist also is required to sing, such as a coffee shop. Sometimes they may have an electronic drummer and possibly bass pedals for rhythm. Happy hour gigs will sometimes use a guitarist, but more commonly it is a keyboard artist.

Playing keyboard is probably one of the most versatile instruments around, since it will fit in to most musical styles and arrangements.

Finding solo gigs such as small parties, cocktail lounges, waiting areas, restaurants, receptions, churches, studio recording, classical, ragtime, jazz, airports, backup for singers is a good place to get started.

Joining or accompanying another musical act or being part of a trio for another group of singers in any style is a joy.

It is not uncommon to have two keyboard artists playing in the same group. While one plays piano, the other may simulate a variety of other woodwinds, brass, flute, stringed instruments or special sound effects. Most times the player will be coordinating the arrangements as the group is playing, all without the use of a musical chart. Keyboard players are the most versatile musicians in the industry, so they have a lot more opportunities to work and are a valuable source of referrals and recommendations for bookings.

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Must Hear Finger Style Guitar Player Mary Flower

Posted by aguitarlesson on 6th November 2009 in Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar, Learn to Play Guitar for Beginners

By Bruce Lamb

I have had the amazing pleasure of taking guitar lessons on finger style guitar blues and ragtime, lap style and Slide Guitar lessons from one of the best teachers out there and her name is Mary Flower. I have also had the pleasure of producing three DVD’s for her in their different styles of guitar mastery.

I first met Mary Flower at the guitar seminars work shop that was run by two other astounding guitar player Woody Mann, and Bob Brozman and I also want to mention Trevor Lawrence who pretty much ran the back end of the workshop and is also a great player.

The three DVD’s I produced for Mary teach three different styles of blues guitar. The first one in on playing blues guitar in the Key of E. The second DVD is playing Ragtime Style of Blues guitar. The third DVD is playing guitar in Dropped D Tuning.

Many blues guitarists feel that the key at E is both the most accessible and expressive key for deep blues sounds. Blues in E is a sound as old as the blues themselves. In this video, Mary shows you how to reach deep into the blues bag by teaching the licks and tricks that have kept this genre interesting and fun.

Going beyond mere role demonstration, she also explores the 12-bar blues structure and offers tips on creating your own arrangements. Starting with the Delta style where the thumb pounds out ifs steady, compelling bass, Mary shows you how to add single notes, up-the-neck bends, moveable chords, and powerful boogie-woogie patterns. Then she walks you through a plethora of blues turnarounds, the figures that add color and spice o your arrangements when you use them as fills between vocal lines.

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Posted by aguitarlesson on 12th October 2009 in Hawaiian Slack Key Guitar

by Bruce Lamb

In order to make a living on a regular basis, you will need to play your guitar well. The better you are at your respective instrument, the more demand there will be for your services, and the more opportunities will present themselves. The better that you can read music, the more bookings will be available to you. This is virtually a mandatory requirement for the higher paying professional gigs.

You should have an extensive song list in the style that you play. If you can sing and the more tunes that you can accompany vocally, the better. If two equal musicians audition for the same gig, the one that can sing the lead in more of them will usually get the booking .If you have this ability to play by ear it will also increase the amount of work you can get.

Make sure that your equipment is set for the appropriate volume levels and is properly tuned. Get to the gig early and get your equipment set up. Go to the gig before you actually have a date to get started and listen to the room. Get a feel for the audience and maybe ask who ever is playing at the gig about there amp settings while they are on a break.

You must always make certain that you are on time and dressed for the gig. Always be polite and remember the more people that like you at the booking, the more chances you will get another by referral. Always try to understand and know what will be expected of you and provide it.

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