How to Play Blue Jean Blues by ZZ Top (Guitar Lesson)


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Dennis Hodges

Blue Jean Blues

Dennis Hodges teaches you how to play this classic song from ZZ Top. If you are a Billy Gibbons fan or just a fan of tasty, slow blues playing in general, check out this lesson!

Taught by Dennis Hodges in Rock Songs With Dennis Hodges seriesLength: 60:04Difficulty: 3.0 of 5


Video Subtitles / Captions


Member Comments about this Lesson

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DeltablueDeltablue replied on October 3rd, 2016

I love the slow blues, it's got so much emotion and feeling. This is where "less is more" comes into play imo. Improvise all over this and make it your own.

TonySlashTTonySlashT replied on September 12th, 2016

No way would I bother to try and learn note for note, but lots of juicy blues riffs to add to the repertoire. An amazing lesson, thanks a million to the teacher.

FlynnedFlynned replied on December 30th, 2015

Just beautiful Loving getting into this. Thank you.

bam711711bam711711 replied on October 2nd, 2014

GREAT JOB thanks please more like this

SodaPopSodaPop replied on March 22nd, 2014

i could really see this song getting me back into my electric!

lp69lp69 replied on March 14th, 2014

Is there something new in the lesson ? Why does it show as recent ?

dennis.hodgesdennis.hodges replied on March 14th, 2014

for some reason it was taken down briefly and reposted. nothing new, sorry!

Garry WGarry W replied on March 21st, 2014

Glad it was, missed it first time around and just noticed it here on my home page

melodiusthunkmelodiusthunk replied on March 14th, 2014

Great Job, Dennis, transcribing the smoke n' mirrors of this slow blues favorite.

scannersscanners replied on September 17th, 2013

Standard tuning?

dennis.hodgesdennis.hodges replied on September 25th, 2013

yes

rich4rich4 replied on September 7th, 2013

Great playing on the minor blues.

sbondsrnsbondsrn replied on August 8th, 2013

Hey Dennis, Thanks for this lesson. I'm working on it and hope to learn the entire thing completely over the next few weeks. Your teach method is easy to follow. I know Blues may not be your thing, but you seem to have a knack and are good at it. Have you thought about doing more slow blues lessons? Maybe something from The Original Fleetwood Mac such as "A Fool No More" or "First Train Home." Or maybe something from Bloomfield, Kooper and Stills Super Session album? Anyway, thanks for this one.

johnnyrockitjohnnyrockit replied on July 12th, 2013

Rev Hodges does it again sweeeeeet music I gotta a lot of work to do! Thanks Dennis one of my old favorites

woodybangwoodybang replied on July 1st, 2013

Well, according to your sheet music they did write it. The fact that Healey was blind and could play this note for note is amazing.

dennis.hodgesdennis.hodges replied on July 1st, 2013

he did cover it on his first album in '88, but like any great player, he actually didn't do it note-for-note, he played it like himself. I believe I mention somewhere in the lesson that while learning it exactly is great practice, it's much more appropriate to take little bits that grab you and use them yourself while improvising. Blues solos are very different than rock/pop solos; playing the "original" solo actually defeats the whole purpose. All that said, transcribing and learning this like I did was actually one of the most challenging feats I've ever tried, and I'm glad I got to do it.

woodybangwoodybang replied on July 1st, 2013

Did they write this song? I'm more familiar with the Jeff Healey version

Rock Songs With Dennis Hodges

Found in our Beginner Lesson Sets

Dennis Hodges is known on JamPlay as a "Metal" guitar instructor but in this series he'll teach you classic songs from bands such as ZZ Top.



Lesson 1

Jesus Just Left Chicago

Here is a lesson on a very popular song from ZZ Top's Tres Hombres, which was released in 1973. Dennis Hodges teaches you all the parts, so get ready for some good ol' fashioned blues rock!

Length: 33:00 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 2

Blue Jean Blues

Dennis Hodges teaches you how to play this classic song from ZZ Top. If you are a Billy Gibbons fan or just a fan of tasty, slow blues playing in general, check out this lesson!

Length: 60:04 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 3

Corrine, Corrina

Learn this early rock 'n' roll classic from Big Joe Turner. Dennis Hodges teaches all of the guitar parts as well as the saxophone solo adapted for guitar.

Length: 31:00 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 4

Locomotive Breath

Learn the guitar parts to Jethro Tull's "Locomotive Breath" as well as a guitar arrangement of the flute solo.

Length: 56:00 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 5

Yesterday

Dennis Hodges covers the acoustic Beatles classic "Yesterday."

Length: 20:25 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only

About Dennis Hodges View Full Biography For better or worse, Dennis Hodges cannot stop playing music, and (he hopes) will never stop playing music.

Growing up in Flint, Michigan, Dennis had a tremendous passion for drawing. He couldn't stop copying moves from bands he saw on MTV, though, and it didn't help that his parents filled the house with Santana, Stevie Ray, and Allman Bros. (on real records, no less!) so it wasn't long till he got his first guitar. It was junk. Within a few weeks his parents traded in a poor acoustic for a less junky 3/4-size electric.

Dennis started lessons right away at the age of 8. He still remembers hating it for awhile, and not taking it seriously until he was 12. He is thankful his parents forced him to practice early on and kept paying for lessons, even though rational thinking should have stopped them after a year.

Around this time drawing became less important, and guitar consumed all his attention. After 6 years of lessons he parted ways with his teacher and, after trying out two others with no results, decided to continue alone. His nerdistic tendencies paid off, as he put in hours working on picking and left hand exercises and learned as many Randy Rhoads and Kirk Hammett solos as he could.

Luckily, there were playing opportunities at school talent shows and church. Dennis was playing bass at his church when he was 13, helping to hone his performance skills in a group setting.

In high school, Dennis joined the marching band on sousaphone for all 4 years. It was as awesome as you could expect. He was also fortunate enough to be in several different metal bands, still play at church, and get the incredible opportunity to play guitar for many local community theaters. This kept his sight-reading in shape and gave him an appreciation for different styles of music (and paid pretty well, from a high schooler's perspective).

In 2001, Dennis came to Bexley, Ohio to study guitar at Capital University with Stan Smith. His studies emphasized jazz and classical guitar. Here his metal past merged with a deeper understanding of the instrument and music in general, and the basis for most of his teaching style was set in motion.

Dennis now plays guitar for Upper Arlington Lutheran Church every Sunday, for St. Christopher in Grandview, Ohio, with the youth group, and also plays for touring Broadway shows that stop in Columbus. Occasionally, he plays weddings and private parties, and he is starting a new cover band with some friends, called Dr. Awkward. He is blessed to have his understanding and supportive wife Kate, and is glad to be at JamPlay!

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