Blues Guitar with DJ

DJ Phillips will teach you everything you need to know to become a master of the blues with an emphasis on fast-paced techniques & playing.

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You will learn what exactly makes the blues sound the way it does. DJ will teach you the 12 bar blues with quite a few chord variations and turnaround options. You will also learn the minor pentatonic scale and how to use it for blues lead play. DJ will also teach you a few modern blues songs to help you master the techniques he teaches.

Lessons in this Series:

Lesson 1

Series Introduction

Meet Mr. DJ Phillips & learn what he's going to teach you throughout this series.

Length: 2:30 Difficulty: 0.5 Member Only
Lesson 2

12 Bar Blues

Learn what makes a chord progression a blues progression as well as the basics to the famous 12 bar blues.

Length: 13:18 Difficulty: 1.0 Member Only
Lesson 3

Rhythmic Variations

Time to take the 12 bar blues progression you've learned and add in some rhythmic variations.

Length: 8:48 Difficulty: 1.5 Member Only
Lesson 4

12 Bar Blues Chord Variations

Now that you've learned the 12 bar blues and some rhythmic variations, it's time to throw in some chord variations.

Length: 6:22 Difficulty: 1.5 Member Only
Lesson 5

Minor Pentatonic Scale

Time to take a break from the 12 bar blues and start mastering some lead techniques. This all starts with the minor pentatonic scale.

Length: 8:13 Difficulty: 1.5 Member Only
Lesson 6

Minor Pentatonic Scale Variations

Now that you've learned the minor pentatonic scale, it's time to learn how to move it around.

Length: 11:10 Difficulty: 2.0 Member Only
Lesson 7

SRV - The House Is Rockin'

Learn a handful of new blues techniques while learning to play Stevie Ray Vaughn's "The House Is Rockin'".

Length: 49:58 Difficulty: 3.0 Free Sample Lesson from this Series!
Lesson 8

Funky Blues Rhythm

Now that you've mastered some SRV, DJ is going to show you some funky blues rhythms that use the 9th chords.

Length: 8:44 Difficulty: 1.5 Member Only
Lesson 9

Minor Pentatonic in Open and First Position

DJ begins a discussion of the minor pentatonic scale patterns. He demonstrates the A minor pentatonic scale in first or "open" position.

Length: 12:16 Difficulty: 1.5 Member Only
Lesson 10

Minor Pentatonic in Second Position

Continuing on with the minor pentatonic scale, DJ covers the second position. As with lesson 9, he provides a few exercises and riffs along the way.

Length: 10:11 Difficulty: 1.5 Member Only
Lesson 11

Minor Pentatonic in Fifth Position

Continuing with the A minor pentatonic scale, DJ returns with a lesson on the fifth position pattern.

Length: 7:09 Difficulty: 1.5 Member Only
Lesson 12

Minor Pentatonic in Seventh Position

In this lesson, DJ covers the A minor pentatonic scale in 7th position. He includes licks and riffs to help with skill building.

Length: 8:49 Difficulty: 2.0 Member Only
Lesson 13

Minor Pentatonic in Ninth Position

This lesson covers the 9th position of the A minor pentatonic scale. DJ provides licks, riffs, and a string skipping exercise.

Length: 15:00 Difficulty: 2.0 Member Only
Lesson 14

Moving Positions

Now that DJ has covered all five patterns of the minor pentatonic scale, he explains how to shift from one pattern to the next.

Length: 6:12 Difficulty: 2.0 Member Only
Lesson 15

Major Pentatonic

Now that DJ has covered the minor pentatonic positions, he shifts gears to the major pentatonic scale.

Length: 17:34 Difficulty: 2.0 Member Only
Lesson 16

Moving Across Positions

In this lesson, DJ demonstrates a number of major pentatonic licks that feature position shifts.

Length: 5:15 Difficulty: 2.0 Member Only
Lesson 17

Combining Major and Minor Pentatonics

DJ demonstrates how to combine the major and minor pentatonic scales. He provides a number of combined scale licks for you to learn.

Length: 12:54 Difficulty: 2.5 Member Only
Lesson 18

Solo and Lead Lines

In this lesson, DJ demonstrates how to build an effective guitar solo.

Length: 9:13 Difficulty: 2.0 Member Only
Lesson 19

Rhythm

This lesson details the importance of rhythm within solos and lead lines.

Length: 6:10 Difficulty: 2.0 Member Only
Lesson 20

Improvising

DJ talks about the art of improvising in this lesson. Always begin with a grand entrance and end with a big finish.

Length: 7:59 Difficulty: 2.5 Member Only
Lesson 21

Building Chords on the 6th String

DJ begins a discussion of colorful dominant chord voicings. He demonstrates how to build chords from a root note on the 6th string.

Length: 9:38 Difficulty: 2.0 Member Only
Lesson 22

Building Chords on the 4th and 5th String

Continuing on from lesson 21, DJ explains how to build dominant chords from root notes on the 4th and 5th strings.

Length: 8:26 Difficulty: 2.0 Member Only
Lesson 23

Using Different Voicings

In lesson 23, DJ demonstrates how various chord voicings can be used while playing rhythm or lead over a 12 bar blues progression.

Length: 4:49 Difficulty: 1.5 Member Only
Lesson 24

Mute Raking

With lesson 24, DJ begins a short segment on tricks of the trade. First, he discusses and demonstrates string rakes.

Length: 5:08 Difficulty: 2.5 Member Only
Lesson 25

Organ Licks

DJ explains how B3 organ licks can be played on guitar.

Length: 4:11 Difficulty: 2.0 Member Only
Lesson 26

Volume Swells

In this lesson, DJ talks about volume swells and how they can be used.

Length: 4:37 Difficulty: 3.0 Member Only
Lesson 27

Walking Bass and Upstroke Shuffle

Continuing with his "tricks of the trade" lessons, DJ demonstrates a walking bass line and the upstroke shuffle.

Length: 6:51 Difficulty: 2.5 Member Only
Lesson 28

Slide

In this lesson, DJ discusses and demonstrates the basics of slide technique.

Length: 5:28 Difficulty: 2.0 Member Only
Lesson 29

Wah Pedals

DJ demonstrates some of the subtleties of using a wah pedal in the blues style.

Length: 3:50 Difficulty: 2.0 Member Only
Lesson 30

Harmonics

DJ discusses and demonstrates natural, artificial (harp), and pinch harmonics in the blues style.

Length: 8:37 Difficulty: 2.5 Member Only
Lesson 31

Aspects of Tone

DJ delves into tone in lesson 31. He discusses how and why certain tones are achieved.

Length: 21:41 Difficulty: 1.5 Member Only
Lesson 32

Minor Blues

With lesson 32, DJ introduces the minor form of the 12 bar blues progression.

Length: 4:57 Difficulty: 2.0 Member Only
Lesson 33

Using the Dominant V7 Chord

Building on his minor blues set, DJ discusses how to utilize the dominant V7 chord to spice up the standard progression.

Length: 4:14 Difficulty: 1.5 Member Only
Lesson 34

Minor Turnaround

DJ demonstrates a couple turnaround techniques that can be applied to the 12 bar minor blues progression.

Length: 6:13 Difficulty: 1.5 Member Only
Lesson 35

Minor 7 Voicings

In this lesson, DJ discusses some minor 7 voicings with roots on the 6th, 5th, and 4th strings.

Length: 9:12 Difficulty: 2.0 Member Only
Lesson 36

Minor 6th Voicings

Much like lesson 35, DJ discusses minor 6th chord voicings with roots on the 6th, 5th, and 4th strings.

Length: 8:53 Difficulty: 2.0 Member Only
Lesson 37

Extensions of the V7 Chord

DJ explains how altered extensions such as the b9 and #9 can be added to the V7 chord within the context of a minor blues progression.

Length: 8:35 Difficulty: 2.0 Member Only
Lesson 38

Scale Options

DJ discusses the scale options that can be used over a minor blues progression.

Length: 2:21 Difficulty: 1.5 Member Only
Lesson 39

Minor Scale Positions

In this lesson, DJ builds upon lesson 38 and covers the minor scale positions across the entire fretboard.

Length: 5:11 Difficulty: 2.0 Member Only
Lesson 40

T-Bone Walker

DJ profiles blues guitarist T-Bone Walker in lesson 40.

Length: 31:23 Difficulty: 2.5 Member Only
Lesson 41

T-Bone Shuffle

Profiling T-Bone walker, DJ will demonstrate the T-Bone Shuffle.

Length: 29:26 Difficulty: 2.5 Member Only
Lesson 42

Skills and Concepts of T-Bone Walker

DJ discusses and demonstrates skills acquired from learning T-Bone Walker's material.

Length: 17:42 Difficulty: 2.5 Member Only
Lesson 43

Bo-Diddley

DJ will take a look at Blues guitarist Bo Diddley and teach you the "Bo Diddley beat."

Length: 13:26 Difficulty: 1.5 Member Only
Lesson 44

Blues with DJ: More Bo Diddley

Dj is back yet again with more on the style of Bo Diddley. Here is will dive more into his style of solos as well as an in depth explanation of how the songs are played out. Get comfortable everyone and get you blues fingers ready.

Length: 22:15 Difficulty: 2.0 Member Only
Lesson 45

Implementing Bo Diddley's Style

Dj brings a kicking finish to the style of Bo Diddley by teaching you how to implement his style of playing to your's. With a quick review of what he has taught so far, Dj will play the backing track as you play with him and creat your own Bo Diddley style solo.

Length: 10:59 Difficulty: 2.5 Member Only
Lesson 46

Swing Blues Solo - Phrase #1

DJ returns to his blues guitar series with the introduction of a complete blues solo. Through the next 12 lessons, DJ will provide a phrase-by-phrase breakdown of the solo. By the end of this mini-series, you will have added a few blues licks to your repertoire as well as a full solo with them...

Length: 3:38 Difficulty: 2.5 Member Only
Lesson 47

Swing Blues Solo - Phrase #2

DJ is back with Phrase #2 of the Swing Blues Solo. This lick is designed to outline the IV chord.

Length: 3:10 Difficulty: 2.5 Member Only
Lesson 48

Swing Blues Solo - Phrase #3

DJ is back with another phrase of his swing blues solo. The third phrase of the first solo is also your first turnaround. In this lick, you'll outline the chords that bring us back to the top of the form.

Length: 3:22 Difficulty: 0.0 Member Only
Lesson 49

Swing Blues Solo - Phrase #4

The fourth phrase of your first solo has a lot of pentatonic influence in it. You've also climbed the neck to the upper register to help build your solo.

Length: 2:29 Difficulty: 2.5 Member Only
Lesson 50

Swing Blues Solo - Phrase #5

We're back to the second phrase in the long form blues again. This lick picks up where the last left off and continues to build suspense in the upper register.

Length: 3:11 Difficulty: 2.5 Member Only
Lesson 51

Swing Blues Solo - Phrase #6

DJ is back with the sixth phrase of his Swing Blues Solo. We're now at the second turnaround of the long form. This lick incorporates chromaticism to build tension.

Length: 4:26 Difficulty: 2.5 Member Only
Lesson 52

Swing Blues Solo - Phrase #7

We're back to the top in the 3rd chorus of the blues solo. This lick starts to amp up the solo by adding more bends and a few double stops.

Length: 3:47 Difficulty: 2.5 Member Only
Lesson 53

Swing Blues Solo - Phrase #8

DJ is back with the eighth phrase in the swing blues solo. The second phrase of the 3rd chorus incorporates hammer-ons.

Length: 3:14 Difficulty: 2.5 Member Only
Lesson 54

Swing Blues Solo - Phrase #9

DJ is back with the ninth phrase in the swing blues solo. For the third time, we find ourselves at the turnaround. This lick plays on the idea of a repeating figure followed up by a scale run.

Length: 4:46 Difficulty: 3.0 Member Only
Lesson 55

Swing Blues Solo - Phrase #10

We really start to add some gusto to the solo for our final three phrases. This lick uses open stringed double stops and position shifting to create a long build up towards the solo's climax.

Length: 3:40 Difficulty: 3.0 Member Only
Lesson 56

Swing Blues Solo - Phrase #11

The eleventh phrase of our long form blues solo continues to build on the previous phrase. This time you'll be using a repeated but slightly varied figure along with double stops to create more build-up.

Length: 3:34 Difficulty: 3.0 Member Only
Lesson 57

Swing Blues Solo - Phrase #12

DJ is back with the final phrase of the swing blues solo. This turnaround lick uses quick bends, repeated figures, and a chromatic walk down to twist your ear before finally resolving back to E.

Length: 5:42 Difficulty: 3.0 Member Only
Lesson 58

Straight Blues Solo - Phrase #1

Now that you've completed the first solo of a long form blues, it's time to tackle the second solo. This next blues is played in straight eighths and starts off with some chromatic notes, bending, and a syncopated rhythm.

Length: 3:13 Difficulty: 3.0 Member Only
Lesson 59

Straight Blues Solo - Phrase #2

Dig into the second phrase of our straight blues solo! This one uses double stops, bends, and vibrato to kick the solo into high gear!

Length: 3:10 Difficulty: 3.0 Member Only
Lesson 60

Straight Blues Solo - Phrase #3

The first turnaround in our straight blues solo uses a low walking melody along with a scale run that brings us back up to the top.

Length: 2:53 Difficulty: 3.0 Member Only
Lesson 61

Straight Blues Solo - Phrase #4

As we return to the top for the second round of our long form, we hear a familiar melody. This one is stolen right from the last phrase, only it's been transposed up into a higher register.

Length: 2:36 Difficulty: 3.0 Member Only
Lesson 62

Straight Blues Solo - Phrase #5

We're getting into the meat of this solo and it's time we started rocking! We amp up the energy by using some down picking and scale lines.

Length: 2:59 Difficulty: 3.0 Member Only
Lesson 63

Straight Blues Solo - Phrase #6

We've now reached the second turnaround of our long form blues. This phrase gets a little funky with some position shifting and double stops.

Length: 4:08 Difficulty: 3.0 Member Only
Lesson 64

Straight Blues Solo - Phrase #7

Here, we return to the top and continue the funky feel from the turnaround. This lick features chromatic runs with vibrato and a repeated figure.

Length: 3:41 Difficulty: 3.0 Member Only
Lesson 65

Straight Blues Solo - Phrase #8

The next lick in our long form straight blues is all about syncopation and getting that dirty tone from the amp. Careful rhythmic placement of rests and the use of double stops help us accomplish this.

Length: 1:59 Difficulty: 3.0 Member Only