The Evolution of Modern Blues

Endless energy. Youthful Innocence. Vintage vibes. Winner of the ultra-prestigious Gibson Blues Guitarist of the Year, Artur Menezes, now joins the JamPlay roster of artists and educators. We are excited to announce his course, The Evolution to Modern Blues

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Modern blues guitar includes the traditional, but borrows from other places in the guitar universe. Jazz flavors and rock energy are just a couple of things that Artur Menezes will touch on in this course. We will learn about the 12 bar blues, the pentatonic scales, targeting “modal” notes, as well as exploring chromatic, diminished and altered scale tonalities.

Lessons in this Series:

Lesson 1

Series Introduction

Artur discusses his new course, what you can expect to learn, and what you should know going in.

Length: 6:28 Difficulty: 0.0 Free Sample Lesson
Lesson 2

Harmony & the 12 Bar Blues

Understanding the form of the 12 bar blues is foundational to blues guitar playing. Internalizing where the chords land and understanding the harmony is key to mastering the traditional blues form.

Length: 5:11 Difficulty: 2.0 Member Only
Lesson 3

Fast Change and Minor Blues

We've learned the standard 12 bar form. There are many different feels that fit within that basic form. In this lesson, Artur takes a look at a variation in the 12 bar blues: the slow change and fast change concepts.

Length: 6:32 Difficulty: 2.0 Member Only
Lesson 4

Slow Blues

Although a very common type of blues, don't be fooled by the word "slow" in slow blues. Slow does not mean easy! In fact, it can be a challenging feel to master. Artur gives us his take on the slow blues.

Length: 9:14 Difficulty: 2.0 Member Only
Lesson 5

Shuffle

The shuffle is one of the core feels of blues. In this lesson Artur talks about how to "feel" the shuffle, and gives some ideas of what to play over it.

Length: 3:33 Difficulty: 2.5 Member Only
Lesson 6

Turnarounds

Turnarounds are lines played over the bars 11 and 12. They're commonly played on blues tunes and their function is to conclude the "sentence"(round). Like when you're reading a book and you finish a paragraph or a chapter.

Length: 8:48 Difficulty: 0.0 Member Only
Lesson 7

Minor Pentatonic Scale (Shape 1) + Licks

To improvise over a blues tune, major or minor, the Minor Pentatonic Scale is a foundational component. In this lesson Artur explains the scale, and will teach you the 1st shape and give you 4 licks that will make you sound bluesy!

Length: 12:30 Difficulty: 2.5 Member Only
Lesson 8

Minor Pentatonic Scale (Shape 2) + Licks

Now on to the 2nd shape of the minor pentatonic scale. Get ready for the scale plus 4 in position licks that will make you sound amazing!

Length: 8:00 Difficulty: 2.5 Member Only
Lesson 9

Minor Pentatonic Scale (Shape 3) + Licks

Another scale shape, another 4 licks! This time it's shape 3 of the minor pentatonic scale.

Length: 8:18 Difficulty: 2.5 Member Only
Lesson 10

Minor Pentatonic Scale (Shape 4) + Licks

The 4th shape add yet more flavors to your minor pentatonic scale licks. Again, we learn the shape and learn 4 cool licks to go along with it!

Length: 7:11 Difficulty: 2.5 Member Only
Lesson 11

Minor Pentatonic Scale (Shape 5) + Licks

In this lesson Artur teaches us the last shape of the minor pentatonic scale. And as with the other shapes, Artur will give us 4 licks to go along with shape 5.

Length: 6:33 Difficulty: 2.5 Member Only
Lesson 12

Bends and Vibratos

Bends and Vibrato are some of if not the most important things to consider when you express yourself through guitar. They are what make you sound like you. In this lesson Artur shows us some vibrato and bending techniques you can learn, and in time they will help you develop your own sound!

Length: 9:10 Difficulty: 2.0 Member Only
Lesson 13

Intro Licks - From the Top and From the Five

Have you ever attended to a blues jam session and heard someone yell "Shuffle in D, from the five! 1, 2, 1, 2, 3, 4..."? What is that! In this lesson Artur teaches you those expressions and licks to start shuffle and slow tunes.

Length: 7:58 Difficulty: 2.5 Member Only
Lesson 14

Ending Licks

Finishing strong is very important when playing the blues! In this lesson, Artur explains how a blues tune usually ends and I'll give you some licks for this.

Length: 8:25 Difficulty: 2.5 Member Only
Lesson 15

BB King Style Licks

It's important to copy the masters in order to understand the blues language and with time develop your own phrasing. In this video I'll show some licks from BB King.

Length: 6:04 Difficulty: 3.0 Member Only
Lesson 16

Albert King Style Licks

It's important to listen to and emulate the masters in order to understand blues language and feel. In this lesson, Artur shows us some licks from the legendary bluesman Albert King.

Length: 7:16 Difficulty: 2.5 Member Only
Lesson 17

Stevie Ray Vaughn Style Licks

When we study the blues greats, it's inevitable that their style will seep into our own playing. Just like we can hear Hendrix in Stevie Ray Vaughn's playing, Stevie Ray's playing can find it's way into yours! Here are some Stevie Ray style licks from Artur to get you on your way.

Length: 13:58 Difficulty: 2.5 Member Only
Lesson 18

Chord Substitutions

Using movements and chord substitution are very important to make the song more musical, mature and less boring for the players and for the audience. In this lesson Artur focuses on the "half diminished" chord substitution in a slow blues, major key, using chormaticism to move the chords.

Length: 10:28 Difficulty: 2.5 Member Only
Lesson 19

Soloing with the Chord Substitution

Now Artur shows us an interesting way of improvising using chords and their arpeggios as the basis of the solo. He also shows us some licks based on the half diminished arpeggio.

Length: 11:18 Difficulty: 3.0 Member Only
Lesson 20

Major Pentatonic Over the Blues

Players like BB King and Derek Trucks mastered playing the major scale over a traditional blues progression. In this lesson Artur shows you how to integrate this into your playing.

Length: 10:25 Difficulty: 3.0 Member Only
Lesson 21

Minor Pentatonic Runs

This lesson is all about an easy but important exercise meant to connect all of the minor pentatonic shapes. Artur also gives us some fast pentatonic runs to help with our speed and dexterity.

Length: 6:53 Difficulty: 3.0 Member Only
Lesson 22

Minor Pentatonic Plus the Sharp 4

Instead of thinking modally, Artur is the type of player that likes to think: Minor Pentatonic + Target notes. In this lesson, he shows us some licks using the minor pentatonic, plus the sharp 4.

Length: 7:19 Difficulty: 3.0 Member Only
Lesson 23

Minor Pentatonic Plus the Major 3rd

The minor pentatonic plus the major 3rd is the subject of this lesson. Get ready to add a major flavor to your tonality!

Length: 6:59 Difficulty: 3.0 Member Only
Lesson 24

Minor Pentatonic Plus the Major 6

More flavors to add to your playing - Adding the major 6 to the minor pentatonic scale gives that "dorian" sound!

Length: 5:06 Difficulty: 3.0 Member Only
Lesson 25

Minor Pentatonic Plus the Major 9

Adding the major 9 flavor to your minor pentatonic scale licks will give you a more modern sound. Join Artur as he explores this latest addition.

Length: 4:55 Difficulty: 3.0 Member Only
Lesson 26

Altered Scale Licks Over the Changes

Using the altered scale in just the right spot can start suggesting jazz tonality in your blues playing. In this lesson, Artur shows us the scale and how and where to use it!

Length: 8:27 Difficulty: 3.0 Member Only
Lesson 27

Dominant Diminished Scale Licks

Dominant diminished. Yet another scale that takes you into new territory, tonally speaking. Artur gives us some cool licks to use with this very unique scale.

Length: 8:33 Difficulty: 3.0 Member Only
Lesson 28

Chromatic Licks

Using chromaticism is an easy way to add a more modern approach and tonality. Artur uses chromatic connecting points to show us this concept.

Length: 7:00 Difficulty: 3.0 Member Only
Lesson 29

Minor Blues Licks

The minor blues is a foundational blues style that has it's roots deep in the genre. Artur talks about this feel and shows us some of his favorite minor blues licks.

Length: 7:52 Difficulty: 3.0 Member Only
Lesson 30

Jazzy Swing Blues

The more we move towards jazz tonality, the more sophisticated our blues becomes. In this lesson Artur improvises over a song from his most recent album. Talk about a modern evolution! This is entering full on Jazz territory!

Length: 6:38 Difficulty: 3.5 Member Only
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