How Understanding The Blues Will Help You Become A Better Blues Guitarist

What Does It Mean To Have The Blues?

Did you ever understood what it means to have the blues? I mean, blues, such an expressive form of music, it influenced the entire evolution of music until today. Think about it. Your parents had the blues when they were going nuts for the Rolling Stones. Or your friend that listens to Black Sabbath and Led Zeppelin all the time. And what about your sister who dances to James Brown? Yep, they all got the blues. But what does it mean to have the blues?

What Is The Blues?

To get a better understanding of this concept, let’s introduce blues music to you this way. When you go to a shopping mall on a buzzy Saturday. So much noise around you, it can drive you insane, but if you focus and listen carefully you can overhear conversations. While you concentrate on a single chat you forget everything and go along in the dialogue. Even though you don’t get the full story, it’s clear that the chat you hear is personal, but it is not private. Blues music works the exact same way. The musicians are expressing a personal and sad feeling and share it through their music. They for sure have the blues to comfort themselves. For the musician or for those who listen and relate, blues music works as a cure. It is basically the medicine for dealing with problems. So when you feel sad or depressed and you hear the blues you will feel a lot better.

Knowing how the blues all started will give you an even better vision on what it means to have the blues. There isn’t an exact day and time when blues music started but we consider the origins of blues music in the late 1800. In the south of America, African slaves who worked on the field vent their feelings through field hollers. The genre of the work songs developed from the African roots and turned into what we call blues. Because there was no evidence of the existence of this new genre, it is unclear when it all started exactly. The music was picked up by those who had ears for it and by 1910 the first recorded blues was published on sheets of paper. The form it had taken is still recognisable on this day: A 12 bar measured pattern, a typical AAB lyrical structure and the use of flattened notes known as the blue notes. It all makes sense why the typical pieces of blues music go about sad feelings if looking back at its history. Blues music was created to express feelings rather than telling a story. Because you have this blues it comforts and brings relief.

How to learn the blues

If you start to wonder that blues music is the base of so much music you hear today, you might consider to study this beautiful style and dive into it wonders so you can share the blues with everyone.

About the author:

Antony Reynaert is a Belgian guitar coach who explains the secrets of blues guitar online as well as locally. On his website Best Blues Guitar Lessons Online there are a lot of articles about how to play blues guitar.


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