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Turnaround Practice (Guitar Lesson)


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Hawkeye Herman

Turnaround Practice

Hawkeye provides some tips regarding how to integrate turnarounds into the context of the 12 bar blues form.

Taught by Hawkeye Herman in Blues Guitar with Hawkeye seriesLength: 3:58Difficulty: 2.0 of 5
Chapter 1: (03:57) Blues Turnaround Practice In this lesson, Hawkeye applies material taught in previous lessons to a 12 bar blues progression in the key of E. Before you dive into the current lesson, take some time to review lessons 1-9.

Hawkeye has covered the following subjects in this series:

1. Basic 12 Bar Blues Harmony
2. Strumming Patterns in the Blues Style
3. The Blues Shuffle
4. A Common Turnaround (High Version)
5. Rhythmic Variations on the High Turnaround.
6. Low Version of the Turnaround and Its Rhythmic Variations.

Practicing Turnarounds

When practicing turnarounds, practice them within the context of the standard 12 bar form. Play a different turnaround variation each time through the form. Remember that blues music is all about spontaneity and playing in the moment. Hawkeye demonstrates how this can be accomplished in the key of E.

Hawkeye's Performance

Note: A complete transcription of the exercise taught in this lesson can be found in the "Supplemental Content" section.

Often, a turnaround lick is used as an introduction to a 12 bar blues tune. Hawkeye chooses to use a version of the high turnaround as a two bar introduction. Then, he proceeds to play several choruses of the twelve bar form. A "chorus" is one pass through the form. "Chorus" is a term that is used most often in the blues and jazz genres. For example, a musician may say, "play a solo for four choruses." This means that you will improvise over four repetitions of the form.

Pay very close attention to each turnaround that Hawkeye uses. Practice the turnarounds he plays in addition to your own turnarounds. Remember to practice this exercise in all 12 keys!

Video Subtitles / Captions





Supplemental Learning Material

Select

Member Comments about this Lesson

Discussions with our instructors are just one of the many benefits of becoming a member of JamPlay.


martintrinimartintrini replied on January 25th, 2017

Feeling the groove

eddiejeddiej replied on April 4th, 2015

Hawkeye, really good stuff,having a grand old time learning the blues from you,thank you very much...eddiej

tk_playstk_plays replied on March 16th, 2014

Hi Hawkeye, I watched a couple of your free blues lessons in YouTube and decided to subscribe to JamPlay to see more. I was pleasantly surprised of the volume and quality of your tuition. Your lessons are pretty much the sole reason I subscribe to JamPlay :) I am following your blues program and enjoying every lesson. Your enthusiasm is very infectious. I learn so much new stuff about the things I thought I already knew :D That's why I'm taking your advice and following the lessons in order. I have a ton of books and dvd's on learning the blues, but your JamPlay lessons are the first ones that seem to fit my style of learning. It's exciting to learn new stuff with you! Thank you!

aiaiaiiiaiaiaiii replied on February 2nd, 2014

Hi Hawkeye, Im following your lessons with a lot of please. You're a great teacher! I just wanted to ask you something a bit off subject, maybe you can help! Besides the blues that Im learning in the moment, I would also really like to learn to play gypsy jazz. Can you give a word out to Jamplay that they are missing a gypsy jazz teacher? I'm sure other people would be fairly interested. And why aren't there any black teachers ?:) Just curious ... Thank you for your answer! Ariane

Hawkeye.HermanHawkeye.Herman replied on February 2nd, 2014

Thanks so much for your kind words about my lesson series and for your questions, Ariane, Very much appreciated. I'm sorry I did not meet you at my concert performance in Geneva for the Blues Assoc. of Geneve (www.bagblues.ch) in Oct. of 2012. At that time I also performed in concert and in schools in nearby Sierre. I was in Geneva for a week, and Sierre for 4 days for the Sierre Blues Club. If you love blues music, I suggest you contact my good friend Christophe Losberger, president of the Blues Association of Geneve .... [email protected] ... and say, "Hello!" from Hawkeye, and join the organization so that you'll be kept aware of blues happening in Geneve, and please tell Christophe that Hawkeye would love to return to Geneve :-) ... I very much enjoy 'gypsy jazz' going all the way back to Django, and I suggest that you send a message with your request to the admin. here at JamPlay with your request. Look at the 'contact link at the top of most of the JP pages and send a message to them with your request, or send an email to [email protected] with your request. ($ubscriber$/$tudents exercise more 'power' than instructors in terms of what lessons are on the site.) If you look at the list of instructors you will see that there is at least one Black instructor here at JP. (Race is not a criteria for instructors ... availability and willingness to participate are, amongst skill/ability and experience, are the criteria. Not race!) I'm so glad that you're enjoying my lesson series. May I suggest you view some of the many blues songs that I have posted on youtube ... try to play along with me, it's good practice, and try to 'steal' my ideas/licks/riffs ;-): http://www.youtube.com/user/HawkeyeH ... and please be sure to check out/explore my web site for more free guitar lessons and blues history information: http://www.HawkeyeHerman.com ... I hope you continue to enjoy these lessons. Thanks again for your kind comments and queationa and for 'traveling' with me on the 'blues highway' here at JamPlay.com. (I hope to see you in Geneve ... someday ... sooner than later.;-)

aiaiaiiiaiaiaiii replied on February 4th, 2014

Thanks for all this precious information! I live in Berlin now so unfortunately I cant join the blues group of Geneva. But your lessons will do just fine for now! Best regards, Ariane

Hawkeye.HermanHawkeye.Herman replied on February 4th, 2014

Thanks for the message, Ariane. Since you're now in Berlin, perhaps you might enjoy attending the largest free blues festival in the world, in Eutin ... I hope to be in Eutin, in 2014 ... please take a moment to send an email greeting to my good friend Helge "Nick" Nickel, ([email protected]) whom I just spent enjoyable time with in Memphis, TN last week ... please let him know that you are an online student of mine, that you are enjoying my lessons, and that you'd, perhaps, like to see me perform and teach in N. Germany ... Eutin is closer to you in Berlin than Geneve ;-) ... and please say "Hello, NIck!" from Hawkeye. Blues Baltica/International Bluesfest Eutin www.bluesfest-eutin.de Helge Nickel Eutin, Germany www.kreativkonkret.de www.bluesfest-eutin.de [email protected] (event mgmt./Memphis '09) Kreative Konkret Blues Baltica/International Bluesfest Eutin www.bluesfest-eutin.de Thanks!!!

willyabrupwillyabrup replied on September 19th, 2013

Hawkeye - you the man!!!! Thanks for being on JamPlay and thanks for teachin us the blues. I love your style.

Hawkeye.HermanHawkeye.Herman replied on September 19th, 2013

You're most welcome, Duncan. Thanks for the comments and for 'traveling' with me on the 'blues highway' here at JamPlay. There are more free lessons at my web site: http://hawkeyeherman.com/guitar-lessons.htm .... articles I've written on blues history and the many iconic blues artists I met and learned from: http://hawkeyeherman.com/articles.htm ... and don't forget to view some of my blues songs on video and you'll see how I use the many techniques I teach here online when I'm performing in concerts and at festivals, try to play along with me, and try to 'steal' my licks/riffs/ideas: http://www.youtube.com/user/HawkeyeH ... I hope you continue to enjoy these lessons. Thanks again for your kind words.

arturovegaarturovega replied on March 13th, 2012

Wow, this is the best lesson so far. You're sound so melodic as you explain the turnaround while playing the guitar. You're almost making a blues song out of it. Its very inspiring =)

Hawkeye.HermanHawkeye.Herman replied on March 13th, 2012

Thanks so much for the kind words. It is a blues song ... if you make it one. That's what's it's all about. I hope you continue to enjoy these lessons

garyfdgaryfd replied on September 21st, 2011

Hi Hawkeye - finally making some progress with the blues - thanks to you. However, I have problem concerning my left hand pinky which was damaged a bit some years ago and points inwards somewhat from the top joint! So, looking at Lesson 5 Blues Shuffle In G for example, I find it impossible to go from 3/5 to3/7 (unable to span/hold the distance if you get what I'm on about. Apart from a bionic new pinky, do you have any thoughts how I might get around this. A bit awkard to say the least. cheers GaryFD

Hawkeye.HermanHawkeye.Herman replied on September 22nd, 2011

Greetings, Gary. Thanks so much for the kind words about these lessons. Very much appreciated. I understand you problem ... if your pinky doesn't 'work' for you playing a shuffle up the neck ... all I can do is recommend you use a capo to play a shuffle rhythm up the neck ... one needs the pinky to make that stretch when playing a shuffle rhythm. Otherwise ... corrective surgery would be in order ... sorry to say. I hope you continue to enjoy these lessons. I hope you continue to enjoy these lessons.

garyfdgaryfd replied on September 24th, 2011

Thanks Hawkeye - I have discussed surgery with my GP and will give it some more thought - in the meatime the capo seems a reasonable compromise - why didn't I think of that! In my initial contacts with you, you mentioned you might visit Australia in 2012 - any thing further on this. There is a major blues/folk festival held each year in a place called Byron Bay - maybe this is where you could be headed. Thanks again and I'll press on with the lessons - internet buffering is a bit of a pain, but tolerable - cheers

Hawkeye.HermanHawkeye.Herman replied on September 24th, 2011

Hi, Gary. SHort of surgery .... a capo is a good idea. There's interest in bringing me to Australia to perform and teach workshops. I know about the Byron Bay event ... if you take a moment to find their web site online, you might send the event producers a short email recommending they have me at the event ... you can refer them to my web site ... www.HawkeyeHerman.com ... if you care to. If an event receives such requests from the 'knowledgeable' public, like you, they have a tendency to 'listen' to the request/referral ... as they want to please their festival attendees. If you could drop them a quick email request/referral, that would be very cool ... and much appreciated. I hope you continue to enjoy these lessons.

chris ryanchris ryan replied on August 7th, 2011

Hi Hawkeye - just had to say how much I appreciate your clear, well thought out blues lessons, I am leaning loads. This music really has a [good] effect on people - even a lowland Scot like myself in Edinburgh, Scotland. Thank you kindly.

greenboogiegreenboogie replied on August 23rd, 2011

I am finally back to go back over and refresh myself.So here we go.Thanks.

Hawkeye.HermanHawkeye.Herman replied on August 23rd, 2011

Welcome back. Take your time and enjoy the process of learning/practicing/playing the blues. I know you will. ;-) Keep up the good work.

Hawkeye.HermanHawkeye.Herman replied on August 7th, 2011

Thnaks so much for the kind words, Chris. Very much appreciated. The blues is/are universal ... I have students here at JamPlay who are in Beijing, Bangkok, Beirut, Boston, Paris, Brussels, Melbourne, London, all over the planet ... and we're all traveling on the 'blues highway' together. I hope you continue to enjoy these lessons. Again, thanks so much for takin gthe time to let me know that learning blues guitar is bringing you joy and satisfaction. ;-)

franky efranky e replied on April 13th, 2011

Hawkeye, you're a brilliant teacher! I just started your lessons about a month ago and am enjoying every minute. At first, I was going to start my phase 2 with bluegrass lessons, but stumbled onto your lessons instead...and now I am addicted to the blues! Thank you!!! Keep on keepin' on!!!

Hawkeye.HermanHawkeye.Herman replied on April 13th, 2011

Thanks so much for the kind comments and for enjoying these lessons, Franky. I hope the information I share with you here at JamPlay.com keeps you happily playing, exploring, and enjoying the blues ... for the rest of your life! Again, thanks so much.

spfoley45spfoley45 replied on March 1st, 2011

Best teacher on here. Am learning a ton.

Hawkeye.HermanHawkeye.Herman replied on March 1st, 2011

Thanks so much, Steve. I'm happy to hear that these lessons are serving you well. You can see how I use many of the blues guitar techniques I teach when I'm performing by watching my videos: http://www.youtube.com/profile?user=HawkeyeH&view=videos ... I hope you continue to enjoy these lessons and traveling with me on the 'blues highway' here at JamPlay.com. Thanks again.

gricon67gricon67 replied on February 1st, 2011

Hawkeye, is there anything wrong or taboo in using a capo when playing the blues shuffle in other keys other the E. I have been practicing without a capo, but I noticed that you didnt mention anything about it. I just wonder if that is frowned upon by other blues musicians

Hawkeye.HermanHawkeye.Herman replied on February 7th, 2011

Please look at this lesson: http://www.jamplay.com/members/guitar/phase2/hawkeye-herman-38/lesson114.html ... there's nothing 'taboo' about using a capo ... however, I don't recommend it because when using the capo you are limiting the length of the fingerboard / access to notes that are behind the capo. It's up to you ... watch the lesson I recommended and decide for yourself. ;-) Thanks so much for enjoying these lessons.

cwthompson99cwthompson99 replied on January 19th, 2011

Hawkeye, your enthusiasm is contagious. I had a smile on my face the whole time I was playing along with you in this lesson.

Hawkeye.HermanHawkeye.Herman replied on January 19th, 2011

Thanks so much for enjoying these lessons, Craig. I love playing blues guitar and sharing what I know with others ... I'm glad my enthusiasm is ... contagious. ;-)

greenboogiegreenboogie replied on December 23rd, 2010

I BE SITTING IN WITH THE FATHEAD DAVIS BLUES/SOUL/R&B BAND TONIGHT STARTING @7:00 PM @GREATSCOTT RESTARANT @1020,OHIO,PIKE,AMELIA,OHIO,GREATER CINCINNATI REGION. I WILL BE BACK ON HERE LATER. I ACCEPTED HIS INVITATION I RECEIVED IN MY I-LIKE TUNES ACCOUNT, AFTER I MAILED HIM ABOUT 6 MONTHS AGO ABOUT WORKING WITH HIS BAND IN THE FUTURE, SO LATER TONIGHT I WILL BE BACK ON HERE. HAPPY HOLIDAYS !!!

Hawkeye.HermanHawkeye.Herman replied on December 24th, 2010

Happy Holidays!

greenboogiegreenboogie replied on December 23rd, 2010

OH I FORGOT TO SAY ABOUT HISTORY IN THE MUSIC THE OTHER RELIGIONS THAT CAME IN THROUGH THE BRITISH BLUES/HARD ROCK TRANSFORMATION THAT STARTED IN THE LATE 1960'S, THE DIFFERENT RELIGION THAT WAS PASSED INTO HARD ROCK DURING THAT TRANSITION OVER IN LONDON ENGLAND, THE GODFATHERS OF METAL, THE LYRICS WITH THAT OTHER RELIGION WAS IN CLASSICAL MUSIC OVER IN OTHER COUNTRIES , ESPECIALLY ENGLAND, IT WAS BROUGHT INTO BLUES AND A HARD ROCK TRANSFORMATION AT THAT TIME. UNFORTUNATELY I AM AN INSTRUMENTLIST, BUT MY RELIGION IS CHRISTION AND UNFORTUNATELY I HAVE TAKEN TIME TO STUDY ABOUT THERE RELIGION AND UNLIKE ALOT OF OTHER CHRISTIONS , I NEVER MISJUDGED OZZY'S LYRICS AND HIS RELIGION THAT CAME IN THROUGH THEM , BECAUSE THEY WEREN'T TRYING TO CONVERT ANY OTHER RELIGION WITH THERE LYRICS IN HIS SONGS, THOSE LYRICS WERE ABOUT THE THINGS OF HIS EXPERIENCE IN HIS LIFE, AND HE CAME FROM A FAMILY OF THAT RELIGION. I HOPE I AM UNDERSTOOD HERE BECAUSE FOR YEARS I HAVE BEEN STUDYING ABOUT THIS BECAUSE THERE ARE AND WAS SO MANY MISJUDJEMENTS AND MISUNDERSTANDINGS ABOUT HIS LYRICS AND THE THINGS HE SANG ABOUT. THE BEATS THE PATTERNS, THE 12 BAR BLUES CHORDS WERE USED , AND TONNI IOMMIE THE LEAD GUITARIST WAS A VAVID BLUES LISTENER AND PLAYER, JUST LIKE JIMI HENDRIX WAS IN OUR COUNTRY.

greenboogiegreenboogie replied on December 23rd, 2010

I'M GONNA TAKE A BREAK AND GO CHECK MY E-MAIL AND MESSAGES MUSIC VIDEO SHARING, DISCUSSIONS YOU NAME IT WHEN IT COMES TO MUSIC AND FIRST OF ALL I'M HEADING TO YOUR WEB SITE . I'LL BE BACK.

Hawkeye.HermanHawkeye.Herman replied on December 23rd, 2010

My web site has a ton of material ... free guitar lessons, articles I've written about blues history and memoirs about blues icons I met and learned from, an ever-growing photo gallery, and much more. ;-)

greenboogiegreenboogie replied on December 23rd, 2010

YES HE IS THE BEST TEACHER I HAVE FOUND I CONSIDER AS A GOD SEND AND I HAVE BEEN RECOMENDING HIM TO ALOT OF PEOPLE THAT SAY THEY NEVER HEARD OF HIM.

Hawkeye.HermanHawkeye.Herman replied on December 23rd, 2010

You can pass along the link and password for a free week at JamPlay.com to your friends, if you wish. Fine with me.

Hawkeye.HermanHawkeye.Herman replied on December 23rd, 2010

Thanks, Jeff. Very much appreciated.

greenboogiegreenboogie replied on December 23rd, 2010

THROWING IN THAT EXTRA NOTE THAT SHOULDN'T REALLY BE THERE IS A BAD HABIT FOR ME I HAVE BEEN DOING FOR A LONG TIME.

greenboogiegreenboogie replied on December 23rd, 2010

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

greenboogiegreenboogie replied on December 23rd, 2010

SOME HOW I MISSED THIS SO I'M BACK HERE TO PICK UP WHERE I MISSED.

nash24nash24 replied on October 5th, 2010

Best teacher ever!!!! I'm loving this!!

Hawkeye.HermanHawkeye.Herman replied on October 5th, 2010

Thanks so much for the kind comments, tonya. Follow along with me on the 'blues highway' and your rewards will be a lifetime of playing and enjoying blues music. Thanks again.

vhernvhern replied on September 4th, 2010

Hawkeye, your love for the music is infectious. I belive that my current skill level in playing the blues over 3 years off and on is now matched right about here (lesson #10). However, I was limited to playing in the key of E, so already I've climbed a notch by learning the different keys. I'm really looking forward to learning to play lead blues. I'll stay in touch. Virgil in New Hampshire (US).

Hawkeye.HermanHawkeye.Herman replied on September 7th, 2010

Thanks so much for the kind message, Virgil. Very much appreciated. I"ve given a lot of thought and planning to the content and order of these lessons ... I hope you follow these lessons in the order they are presented and that you continue to progress and enjoy learning and playing blues guitar ... forever ;-) Thanks again.

synesthesia67synesthesia67 replied on August 14th, 2010

thanx a million, hawkeye!! it's Evan from "step it up and go!" ..and,...from bimart in ashland..lovin it so far!!

Hawkeye.HermanHawkeye.Herman replied on August 15th, 2010

Hey Evan, Good to see ya here checkin' it all out. There's a ton of great guitar information here at jamplay.com ... get the most out of it while you can. ;=) Cheers, Hawkeye

cedrictaipeicedrictaipei replied on November 10th, 2009

Is there a fan club page for Hawkeye Herman ? Thanks to Jamplay and thanks to you, I improved more in a month than in two years learning by myself. Your lessons are not only accessible for beginners, but more important they are FUN to follow ! This makes a big difference. Thank you ! By the way there is a Blues Society, here in Taiwan, led by Chicago blues player DC Rapier and we teamed up for the Blues Bash N°6, this weekend, have a look ! http://www.bsot.org

Hawkeye.HermanHawkeye.Herman replied on November 10th, 2009

Thanks so much for enjoying these lessons and for your kind comments. Very much appreciated. I hope you visit my web site and check out the free 'guitar lessons' page, the 'original articles' page, and maybe the photo gallery. Also, if you want to see how I use the many techniques I teach here at jamplay.com when I'm performing in concert and at festivals, check this out: http://www.bsot.org I'm very active in the Blues FoUndation (the international 'head' group for all blues societies, a former member of the board of directors) and I was aware that there's a blues society in Taiwan. That's cool ... maybe someday I can come there to perform and teach??? I hope so. Again, thanks so much for traveling with me on the 'blues highway' here at jamplay.com. I'm so glad to hear that you're improving rapidly as a result of my lessons. Cheers and Best Wishes, Hawkeye

chesterkelseychesterkelsey replied on September 29th, 2009

Hi Hawkeye,Just had to say how much I am enjoying your lessons.Like a lot of other people I learnt a bit a few years ago then put the guitar away when I did not seem to be getting anywhere.It was only recently when my wife threatened to put the guitar on ebay that I decided to give it another go.Luckily I found Jamplay and have not looked back.I did the basic course with Steve Eulberg and then began following your lessons and my playing has improved so much that I am starting to sound like someone else although trying to sing the blues in an English accent is less than convincing.A lot of people seem to want to jump around with the lessons but as you say even you are still learning so why not take your time and get as good as you can.Thanks again and good luck to everybody.

Hawkeye.HermanHawkeye.Herman replied on September 29th, 2009

Thanks so much for the kind comments, Michael. Very much appreciated. So glad you're enjoying these lessons and the progress you're making. Follow the lessons plan/order and you'll continue to gain more blues guitar skills and understanding. Don't let your 'Brit accent' keep you from singing the blues ... if Mick Jagger, Joe Cocker, Steve Winwood, John Mayall, and so many other Brits can take up and sing the blues, so can you :-) I hope you continue to travel with me on the 'blues highway' here at jamplay.com

sendbahtsendbaht replied on August 28th, 2009

Hawkeye, as you read my profile i'm living in Thailand. I'm retired and spending hours on the guitar now thanks to you. I ride my bicycle everyday and make up Blues songs as I ride too. Thanks again Hawkeye!!!!! Don Ps 1 lesson at a time.

Hawkeye.HermanHawkeye.Herman replied on August 28th, 2009

sendbaht, Thanks so much for the message. I'm happy to hear that you're enjoying these lessons ... and your retirement. No, don't try to play the guitar while riding your bicycle ... but sing your heart out. It's good for the soul/spirit. Yes, write your own blues songs and express yourself through music. That's what the blues is about. I hope you continue to progress on the guitar and enjoy the process of learning. Thanks so much for being here at jamplay.com.

sendbahtsendbaht replied on August 28th, 2009

That is singing blues songs while riding my bicycle not playing the guitar.:))

justusfranzjustusfranz replied on August 22nd, 2009

Hawkeye, thank you soo much for your lessons. I´m new here in jam play, just because I wanted to learn the blues. Now I found what I needed! Although I´m far away from you ( Germany) , I have the feeling that you teaching me right in front of me. Thank you, I will work an lesson 10 and after that follow you in the lessons. I hope you understood my englisch, sorry for that. Greetings from old Europe.

Hawkeye.HermanHawkeye.Herman replied on August 22nd, 2009

Greetings and Gooten Tahg, Kai. Thanks for enjoying my guitar lessons. Your English is much better than my German, I can assure you. Please don't skip around in these lessons if you can help it ... I've given a lot of thought to the order and content of these lessons ... in order to give you a strong foundation in the blues ... skip around amongst these lessons and you'll still learn a lot ... but there will be 'holes' in your blues foundation ...s tick with the 'program' and you'll have a strong foundation in blues music and be able to play/create on your own. You can watch me use many of the techniques I teach here when I'm performing here www.youtube.com/profile?user=HawkeyeH and there are many good informative articles on blues history, as well as over 20 free guitar lessons at my web site www.HawkeyeHerman.com Again, thanks for the comment. I do tour in Europe now and then, perhaps I'll see you in Germany someday. I hope you continue to enjoy these lessons.

sandeepsandeep replied on May 16th, 2009

Hawkeye, you are an amazing instructor. You've made playing blues easy and so much fun. Simply awesome....

Hawkeye.HermanHawkeye.Herman replied on May 16th, 2009

Sandeep, Namaste, and thanks so much for your comment and for enjoying these lessons. I would love to hear you play the "Nepalese Blues" ... there's room for plenty of experimentation in blues music ... I hope you continue to learn and derive pleasure from these lessons and the improvement in your guitar playing. Again, thanks so much.

kasrakasra replied on May 9th, 2009

this lesson is amazing

Hawkeye.HermanHawkeye.Herman replied on May 9th, 2009

kasra, Well, thanks ... this is just the 'beginning' for you ... there's more ahead to amaze you. Please don't skip around in these lessons if you can help it ... I've given a lot of thought to the order and conctent of these lessons ... in order to give you a strong foundation in the blues ... skip around amongst these lessons and you'll still learn a lot ... but there will be 'holes' in your blues foundation ...s tick with the 'program' and you'll have a strong foundation in blues music and be able to play/create on your own. You can watch me use many of the techniques I teach here when I'm performing here www.youtube.com/profile?user=HawkeyeH and there are many good informative articles on blues history, as well as over 20 free guitar lessons at my web site www.HawkeyeHerman.com Again, thanks for the comment. I hope you continue to enjoy these lessons.

johnnyu19johnnyu19 replied on March 25th, 2009

I'm really starting to have fun playing the guitar with your lessons. You obviously enjoy the blues and a historian of the blues as well. I'm still kinda slow but getting better, thanks for some great videos!

Hawkeye.HermanHawkeye.Herman replied on March 25th, 2009

johnnyu19, Thanks for enjoying these lessons and for your kind comments. You can get more guitar lessons from me for free at: and you can watch me put the blues guitar techniques I teach here into practice by watching some of the Hawkeye videos at: Again, thanks so much for your post. I hope you continue to enjoy our journey together on the 'blues highway' here at jamplay.com. There's much more to come.

marsekaymarsekay replied on February 22nd, 2009

superb lesson! was hav ing a little trouble fitting the turnaround in timing wise but its much easier when i can play along to see! Cheers hawkeye!... i'm loking forwad to some slide stuff! hopefully i can learn enough so i wont have to trade my soul with the devil!! cheers again!

Hawkeye.HermanHawkeye.Herman replied on February 22nd, 2009

marsekay, Thaks so much. So glad you're enjoying these lessons. Please don't jump/skip ahead ... slide guitar lessons are coming and are already posted ... but I have given a great deal of thought and planing as to the content and order of these lessons so as for you to build a strong blues foundation ... if you skip/jump ahead ... you'll have 'holes" in your blues foundation ... so, please follow the program, lesson by lesson, and we'll be getting to slide guitar at a time when you're on solid ground with basic blues and are ready to apply the slide to the strings. Thanks so much!

cylonguitarcylonguitar replied on January 7th, 2009

this guy is the man!

Hawkeye.HermanHawkeye.Herman replied on January 7th, 2009

cylonguitar. Thanks. I hope you continue to enjoy every lesson and find yourself playin' the blues more and more.

mkesnermkesner replied on November 1st, 2008

Hawkeye, your enthusiasm is infectious and fun. I haven’t enjoyed playing guitar so much in a long time. I am also reading a book by Martin Scorsese "The Blues", have you read it? Anyway I just wanted to thank you again for your enthusiasm and awesome teaching methods.

Hawkeye.HermanHawkeye.Herman replied on November 3rd, 2008

mkesner, Thanks so much for your kind comment. Yes, I have read the book you refer to. You should see the PBS video/DVD/series "The Blues" that goes with to book. You might be inte4rested in reading some of the articles I've written about blues and blues history that are posted here at jamplay.com under the "Articles" heading. Also, on my web site: http://www.hawkeyeherman.com/articles.htm I hope you continue to enjoy my blues guitar lessons. Again, thanks so much.

Hawkeye.HermanHawkeye.Herman replied on September 9th, 2008

darnells, Thanks so much. I truly appreciate your comments ... not everyone is interested in the history that goes along with the music ... so glad you are. I love it all. I fyou go to my web site HawkeyeHerman.com ... click on 'original articles' and you can read more about the history of the music and the many old icons of the blues that I was honored/blessed to meet and learn from. There are tons more lessons to come ... which include a bit of history along the way ... when I feel i'ts appropriate (which is ... always ;-) Again, thanks so much for your appreciation of the history of the blues that I include with these lessons.

darnellsdarnells replied on September 8th, 2008

Hawkeye, you are da man! Your love for the music really comes through in your teaching! Thanks for the lesson on the origin of blues music and impacts on other genres.

Hawkeye.HermanHawkeye.Herman replied on July 29th, 2008

There's lots more to come. Keep practicing ... play steady rhythm ... practice the 12-bar chord changes using a shuffle in all the keys ... include the turnaround for the last two bars of each verse ... and experiment along the way.

ronin808ronin808 replied on July 28th, 2008

I got the blues Hawkeye, and I'm liking it!

Blues Guitar with Hawkeye

Found in our Beginner Lesson Sets

The blues is a distinctly American style of music. Many popular genres such as jazz, rock, and country music draw upon basic blues concepts. Consequently, it is advantageous for any guitarist to study the blues.



Lesson 1

Introduction to Blues

Hawkeye Herman introduces the blues. He explains the 12 bar blues chords and the poetic format that blues lyrics typically follow.

Length: 19:25 Difficulty: 1.0 Members Only
Lesson 2

Understanding Blues Chords

Hawkeye explains how the I, IV, and V chords are used in a 12 bar blues progression.

Length: 12:12 Difficulty: 1.0 Members Only
Lesson 3

Blues Rhythm

Hawkeye demonstrates common strumming patterns used in blues music. He also explains how country music evolved from the blues.

Length: 19:42 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
Lesson 4

Intro to the Blues Shuffle

The shuffle is one of the most common rhythms used in blues music. Hawkeye introduces the most basic shuffle rhythm pattern.

Length: 18:12 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
Lesson 5

More Blues Shuffle

Hawkeye covers the blues shuffle in greater depth.

Length: 13:13 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
Lesson 6

The Blues Turnaround

Hawkeye introduces and explains a common blues turnaround.

Length: 7:45 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 7

Interesting Blues Turnaround

Hawkeye demonstrates various ways of arpeggiating the blues turnaround from the previous lesson.

Length: 8:08 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 8

Moving the Turnaround

Hawkeye explains how the turnaround from the previous lesson can be transposed to all 12 keys.

Length: 5:57 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 9

Turnaround in the Bass

Hawkeye explains how the blues turnaround can be played on the bass strings.

Length: 11:12 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 10

Turnaround Practice

Hawkeye provides some tips regarding how to integrate turnarounds into the context of the 12 bar blues form.

Length: 3:58 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 11

Turnarounds as Lead

In this lesson Hawkeye will explain how you can use turnarounds as a way to play basic lead.

Length: 0:00 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 12

Subtle Changes

Hawkeye demonstrates how subtle changes made to the blues shuffle can have a profound impact on the overall sound of the 12 bar form.

Length: 7:12 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 13

Blues Shuffle Variations

Hawkeye demonstrates more blues shuffle variations. He discusses playing individual notes and palm muting.

Length: 7:23 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 14

Bass Blues Shuffle

In this lesson, Hawkeye teaches a bass version of the blues shuffle that mimics a common left-hand piano pattern.

Length: 10:49 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 15

Turnaround Exercise

Hawkeye presents an exercise that will enable you to play a turnaround over the blues form in all twelve keys.

Length: 10:44 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 16

Delta Blues Turnaround

Hawkeye teaches a Delta blues turnaround in the key of A. This turnaround is played in the style of Robert Johnson.

Length: 10:45 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 17

Delta Blues Turnaround #2

Hawkeye Herman teaches a new Delta blues turnaround. This lick was inspired by Robert Johnson.

Length: 7:12 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 18

Robert Johnson Style

Hawkeye Herman teaches more components of Robert Johnson's signature sound.

Length: 27:38 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 19

Movable Chords

Hawkeye introduces some common, movable chord shapes.

Length: 17:42 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 20

Movable Chord Review

Hawkeye reviews movable chords in this lesson. He explains how these chord voicings can be used in a practical blues context.

Length: 5:41 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 21

Basic Blues Scale

Hawkeye Herman introduces the minor pentatonic scale in this lesson, the most commonly used scale in blues lead guitar.

Length: 23:54 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 22

Passing Notes

Hawkeye builds on the pentatonic scale. He introduces "blue" notes, which transform the pentatonic scale into the minor blues scale.

Length: 12:50 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 23

Scales and Keys

Hawkeye explains how to transpose the minor pentatonic and minor blues scales to different keys.

Length: 21:18 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 24

Finding the Key

Hawkeye Herman explains how to determine the key of a blues song. This information is essential if you wish to play lead over a song.

Length: 15:31 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 25

Lightnin' Hopkins Style

In this lesson, Hawkeye will bring together much of what he has taught in this lesson series and apply it to the style of Lightnin' Hopkins.

Length: 16:36 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 26

Treble Shuffle

Hawkeye explains how to play the blues shuffle on the treble strings.

Length: 9:22 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 27

The Great River Road

Hawkeye Herman teaches you how to play his original song, "The Great River Road," in this phenomenal lesson.

Length: 16:39 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 28

Mississippi John Hurt Style

Hawkeye covers the guitar style of Mississippi John Hurt. This style makes heavy use of alternating bass lines.

Length: 14:48 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 29

Piano Blues

Hawkeye teaches an original piece called "Piano Blues." He teaches this song to further demonstrate the alternating bass line.

Length: 13:20 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 30

Blues Accompaniment

Hawkeye Herman teaches a beautiful blues accompaniment pattern.

Length: 10:11 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 31

Stop-Time Blues

Hawkeye introduces the stop-time blues rhythm.

Length: 17:21 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 32

Sweet Home Chicago

Hawkeye Herman explains how to play Robert Johnson's "Sweet Home Chicago."

Length: 16:17 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 33

Eight Bar Blues

Hawkeye introduces the eight bar blues progression.

Length: 22:28 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 34

8 Bar Blues Key Transposition

Hawkeye takes the 8 bar blues material from the last lesson and explains how to transpose it to different keys.

Length: 6:39 Difficulty: 0.5 Members Only
Lesson 35

Classic 8 Bar Blues

Hawkeye teaches a classic 8 bar blues tune in the style of Brownie McGhee and Big Bill Broonzy.

Length: 25:10 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 36

Playing Multiple Notes

In this lesson Hawkeye revisits the blues/pentatonic scale and talks about playing multiple notes at the same time.

Length: 9:42 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
Lesson 37

Classic End Tag

Hawkeye Herman teaches a classic blues song ending. He also explains how it can be played in different keys.

Length: 9:42 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 38

Basic Blues Slide

Hawkeye Herman covers the basics of slide technique and provides exercises to demonstrate them.

Length: 25:49 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 39

Slide Guitar and Open D Tuning

Hawkeye Herman introduces open D tuning. He explains how to play a 12 bar blues progression with a slide in this tuning.

Length: 14:56 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 40

Ramblin' On My Mind

Hawkeye Herman demonstrates the classic Robert Johnson song, "Ramblin' On My Mind" in open D tuning.

Length: 8:41 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 41

Blues Shuffle in Open D

Hawkeye explains how to play the blues shuffle in open D tuning.

Length: 0:00 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 42

Open D Harmony Shuffle

Hawkeye teaches the "harmony" version of the shuffle in open D tuning.

Length: 5:15 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 43

Open D Turnaround

Hawkeye teaches a simple blues turnaround in open D tuning.

Length: 9:00 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 44

Open D Slide Licks

Hawkeye Herman teaches some open D slide guitar licks. These licks are inspired by the song "Ramblin' On My Mind" by Robert Johnson.

Length: 8:14 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 45

Pentatonic Scale in Open D

Hawkeye Herman explains how to play the D minor pentatonic scale in Open D tuning.

Length: 4:00 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 46

Ramblin' On My Mind

Hawkeye challenges you to play "Ramblin' On My Mind" using the techniques from the past couple of lessons.

Length: 4:03 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 47

Rock and Slide Guitar

Hawkeye shows that open D tuning and slide guitar are not exclusive to the blues. He provides an exercise that demonstrates how this tuning can be used in rock music.

Length: 15:55 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 48

D Tuning Chords

Hawkeye returns to the world of open D tuning. He introduces various chord voicings and explains how they can be used in the blues.

Length: 10:00 Difficulty: 0.5 Members Only
Lesson 49

You Got To Move

In this lesson, Hawkeye teaches a classic blues song by Mississippi Fred McDowell - "You Got To Move".

Length: 9:03 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 50

You Got to Move Melody

Hawkeye Herman demonstrates how to play the melody of "You Got to Move" with a slide.

Length: 6:51 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 51

Slide Guitar and Blues Licks

Hawkeye Herman talks about playing and creating blues licks with the slide.

Length: 9:53 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 52

Elmore James Style

Hawkeye Herman breaks down important aspects of Elmore James' style.

Length: 23:11 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 53

Blues Licks and Riffs

Hawkeye teaches some versatile blues licks and riffs that can be used in open D tuning.

Length: 11:15 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 54

Open G Tuning

Hawkeye Herman teaches the basics of open G tuning.

Length: 7:28 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 55

G Tuning Chords

Hawkeye gives a brief overview of chords and how they are played in open G tuning.

Length: 6:11 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
Lesson 56

Blues Scale in Open G Tuning

Hawkeye gives a brief rundown of how the blues / minor pentatonic scale can be played in open G tuning.

Length: 4:48 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
Lesson 57

G Tuning Accompaniment

Hawkeye talks about playing accompaniment using open G tuning.

Length: 7:44 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 58

Improvising in G Tuning

Improvisation using the minor pentatonic / blues scale is discussed in open G tuning. Hawkeye also touches on Robert Johnson's song, "Walkin' Blues."

Length: 7:26 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 59

Open G Shuffle Rhythm

In this lesson, Hawkeye Herman talks about playing the blues shuffle in open G tuning. He also shows some basic turnarounds.

Length: 10:37 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 60

Open G Shuffle Variations

Hawkeye reviews the blues shuffle in open G tuning. He demonstrates shuffle variations as well as a few licks, turnarounds, and other tidbits.

Length: 15:45 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 61

Robert Johnson Licks

Hawkeye teaches several Robert Johnson licks in this lesson. These licks are played with a slide in open G tuning.

Length: 14:40 Difficulty: 2.5 FREE
Lesson 62

G Tuning and the Capo

Hawkeye introduces the capo and explains how it can be used. This lesson is still in the context of G tuning.

Length: 10:28 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 63

Come On In My Kitchen

Hawkeye Herman showcases the power of slide guitar by demonstrating the classic Robert Johnson song, "Come On In My Kitchen."

Length: 6:33 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 64

Skip James Style

Hawkeye Herman gives a brief rundown of Skip James' blues guitar style. This lesson also focuses on playing in open tunings without a slide.

Length: 19:15 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 65

Open D to Open G

Hawkeye demonstrates how to take a song from open D tuning and play it in open G. He uses the song "No Expectations" by the Rolling Stones as an example.

Length: 10:26 Difficulty: 0.5 Members Only
Lesson 66

Drop D Tuning

Hawkeye shows you the wonders of drop D tuning and teaches his rendition of "Big Road Blues."

Length: 30:30 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 67

Statesboro Blues

Hawkeye goes over the fantastic song "Statesboro Blues" by Blind Willie McTell in Drop D tuning.

Length: 27:12 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 68

Blind Lemon Jefferson

Hawkeye discusses some history behind the great blues guitarist Blind Lemon Jefferson. He covers the song "Matchbox Blues" to provide an example of his style.

Length: 19:40 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 69

Minor Blues

Hawkeye explains the chord changes used in a minor blues progression.

Length: 12:53 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 70

The Capo

Hawkeye talks about the capo and its many uses.

Length: 22:32 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 71

Song Endings

By user request, Hawkeye shares ideas on how to end songs in this lesson.

Length: 21:26 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 72

Stop Time Blues

In this lesson, Hawkeye Herman returns to the wonderful world of stop-time blues. He teaches a few more ways to play in this glorious style.

Length: 17:53 Difficulty: 0.5 Members Only
Lesson 73

Eight Bar Blues

Hawkeye talks about the eight bar blues and uses some classic blues songs as examples.

Length: 26:19 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 74

Blues Mambo

Hawkeye talks all about the blues mambo in this lesson.

Length: 16:09 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 75

Movable Endings

Hawkeye explains how all the endings you've learned up to this point can be transposed to any key.

Length: 31:53 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 76

Movable Blues Scale

Hawkeye talks about transposing the minor pentatonic scale to various keys.

Length: 16:58 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 77

Blues Scale Lead

Hawkeye explains how the blues scale can be used to play lead in any song.

Length: 30:57 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 78

Spanning the Neck

Hawkeye explains how the blues scale can span the neck in any key.

Length: 22:09 Difficulty: 3.5 Members Only
Lesson 79

The Blues Had a Baby

Hawkeye talks about the background of rock 'n roll and how it is connected to blues.

Length: 21:42 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 80

Fun Licks

This lesson is filled with fun licks and lick techniques.

Length: 17:32 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 81

Spanning the Neck Continued

Hawkeye brings more blues wisdom to you in this lesson about spanning the neck.

Length: 18:18 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 82

Barre Chords Refresher

Hawkeye provides a few useful tips on playing barre chords.

Length: 13:18 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 83

Chord Relationships

Hawkeye discusses how the visual shapes of chords relate to one another on the fretboard.

Length: 15:06 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 84

Chord Relationships Continued

Hawkeye explains how to find the I, IV, and V chords in all 12 major keys.

Length: 8:43 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 85

Shuffle Rhythm Review

Hawkeye answers member questions on the shuffle rhythm.

Length: 16:19 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 86

Key of A Idea

Hawkeye shares an idea in the key of A that you can apply to your blues playing.

Length: 18:15 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 87

Thumbpick Vs. Flatpick

Thumbpick Vs. Flatpick: A most common question asked among guitarists is discussed in this lesson.

Length: 15:13 Difficulty: 0.5 Members Only
Lesson 88

Capo Ideas

Hawkeye shares his ideas on the capo and explains why he thinks it is important for every guitarist to own one.

Length: 18:34 Difficulty: 0.5 Members Only
Lesson 89

Everything is Movable

Hawkeye reiterates that everything is movable on the guitar and provides some fresh new ideas.

Length: 12:27 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 90

Bass Notes in Treble

Hawkeye explains how to add variety to the shuffle pattern by transferring the bass notes to the treble register and by adding palm muting. He also explains how you can create your own shuffle variations.

Length: 21:21 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 91

Treble Shuffle

Hawkeye provides more amazing tips and tricks on moving your shuffle rhythm to the treble for a unique sound.

Length: 16:50 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 92

Creating Solos

Hawkeye revisits the techniques learned in the last few lessons and explains how to tie tie them together to create solos.

Length: 9:46 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 93

Transposing Songs

Hawkeye provides some great tips for transposing any song you want to learn to a different key.

Length: 17:31 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 94

History of Blues

This exciting lesson dives into some of the earliest history of blues music and how it has shaped popular music today.

Length: 13:52 Difficulty: 0.5 Members Only
Lesson 95

Blues is the Roots

Hawkeye Herman explains why "blues is the roots, and everything else is the fruits."

Length: 8:41 Difficulty: 1.0 Members Only
Lesson 96

The Style of Hank Williams

Hawkeye discusses the history and style of Hank Williams.

Length: 17:07 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 97

The Style of Jimmie Rodgers

Hawkeye demonstrates some key aspects of Jimmie Rodgers' style.

Length: 12:30 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 98

Boom-Chicka Strum

Hawkeye demonstrates the "boom-chicka" strum and explains various ways you can incorporate it into your playing.

Length: 22:44 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 99

Fun Runs

Hawkeye Herman explains how to spice up your rhythm playing by incorporating bass runs between chord changes.

Length: 16:20 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 100

Review & Practice

Hawkeye Herman celebrates lesson 100 with a short but sweet review of what you've learned in the past couple of lessons.

Length: 6:51 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 101

Song Medley

Hawkeye Herman demonstrates rhythmic concepts from earlier lessons by playing a fun medley.

Length: 13:08 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 102

Hawkeye's Favorite Licks

Hawkeye shares some of his favorite licks in this lesson.

Length: 22:35 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 103

More Fun Licks

Hawkeye teaches more fun licks to add to your blues bag of tricks.

Length: 31:20 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 104

More Licks Up the Neck

Hawkeye Herman is back with some more classic blues licks that span the length of the fretboard.

Length: 26:20 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 105

Bass Licks

Hawkeye explains the importance of playing licks over the entire neck of the guitar.

Length: 21:33 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 106

Rock Me Lick

Hawkeye Herman shares a lick that is commonly known as the "Rock Me Baby" Lick. He explains how this lick can be incorporated into a performance of this classic B.B. King song.

Length: 19:09 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 107

Turnaround Positions

Hawkeye discusses how ideas derived from turnarounds can be incorporated into blues solos.

Length: 8:19 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 108

Instrumental Themes

Hawkeye Herman talks about instrumental themes and how you can add lead fills to them.

Length: 18:03 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 109

Instrumental Themes Continued

Hawkeye continues his discussion on instrumental themes and blues.

Length: 23:42 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 110

Ninth Chords

Hawkeye Herman explains how dominant 9th chords are formed and how they can be used in blues music.

Length: 15:16 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 111

Ninth Chords Continued

Hawkeye Herman continues his discussion on 9th chords.

Length: 26:52 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 112

More Eight Bar Blues

Hawkeye Herman shares more eight bar blues knowledge in this fun and information-packed lesson.

Length: 23:57 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 113

Using a Tuner

Hawkeye shares his thoughts on tuners in this lesson.

Length: 6:38 Difficulty: 0.5 Members Only
Lesson 114

Introducing the Capo

In the 114th installment of his Blues Series, Hawkeye introduces the capo. He demonstrates how this valuable tool allows you to transpose chord voicings to various keys.

Length: 23:21 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 115

Forming Barre Chords

Having trouble getting those fingers to form barre chords? In lesson #115 of his Blues Series, Hawkeye covers some tips and techniques to help with these problematic chord shapes. Any beginner can master...

Length: 10:03 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 116

4 Up, 5 Down Applied Concept

Hawkeye explains why the adjacent strings on the guitar are tuned in perfect fourths and how this relates to left hand fingering.

Length: 18:44 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 117

Relative Chord Shapes

Hawkeye continues where he left off in lesson 116 and explains how the tuning of the guitar relates to commonly used chord shapes.

Length: 16:43 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 118

Transposing Notes / Changing the Key

Hawkeye Herman reviews important transposition concepts. Here he demonstrates how to change the key of a song so that it is appropriate for your vocal range.

Length: 20:31 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 119

All About Finger Picking

Hawkeye takes a look at this important right hand technique.

Length: 20:54 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 120

Bo Diddley Beat

Hawkeye provides a history lesson on Bo Diddley. He also demonstrates how to play the classic "Bo Diddley Beat." This rhythmic pattern appears in countless blues and rock songs.

Length: 20:15 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 121

Thematic Bass Lines

Hawkeye teaches some blues bass lines that can be applied to the twelve bar blues form.

Length: 19:04 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 122

Bass Lines Continued

Hawkeye continues on from his 121st lesson with more examples of blues bass lines for guitar.

Length: 7:14 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 123

Lead Bass Ideas

Hawkeye dives into some lead bass ideas. He demonstrates how a classic Eric Clapton riff can be used over the twelve bar blues form in any key.

Length: 12:57 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 124

Willie's Bounce

Hawkeye teaches the bass line riff to his song "Willie's Bounce."

Length: 16:31 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 125

Finger Picking Part 2

Hawkeye continues his discussion on finger picking.

Length: 12:27 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 126

The Texas A

Hawkeye Herman teaches a version of the A chord that he calls "The Texas A."

Length: 13:59 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 127

Blues Scale: Adding the Major 3rd

Hawkeye breaks down the blues scale and demonstrates how to appropriately add the major 3rd.

Length: 26:16 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 128

Double Stops

As demonstrated in previous lessons, Hawkeye opens up the world of double stops. Hawkeye teaches some classic Chuck Berry licks to demonstrate how double stops can be used effectively.

Length: 11:53 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 129

Scrapper Blackwell

Hawkeye introduces the guitar stye of Scrapper Blackwell. He uses the song Scrapper called "E Blues" as a starting point.

Length: 20:46 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 130

Influence of Blind Lemon Jefferson

History flows deep in blues music. Hawkeye discusses the influence of Blind Lemon Jefferson. This lesson is one for the history books.

Length: 22:43 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 131

Humming and Strumming

Hawkeye opens up some ideas on how to "plan ahead" in your playing. Similar to riding a bike, you need to look forward to see where your going. Humming what you want to play allows you to anticipate the...

Length: 18:49 Difficulty: 4.0 Members Only
Lesson 132

Katrina, Oh Katrina

Inspired by the tragedy of Hurricane Katrina, Hawkeye was commissioned by the BBC to write a song about Katrina. Hawkeye demonstrates this song and recalls his thought process in writing this song.

Length: 29:53 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 133

All About the Hammer-on

Hawkeye demonstrates how a hammer-on can be used to open up doors in your playing. Hawkeye shows you how to achieve this technique and use it successfully in your playing.

Length: 24:07 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 134

The Pull-off

Hawkeye covers the pull-off, best friend of the hammer on. This technique is used to achieve the same goal as the hammer-on, yet with a completely different finger movement.

Length: 15:02 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Lesson 135

Using Hammer-ons and Pull-offs Together

Hawkeye combines lessons 133 and 134 and demonstrates some examples of how to utilize the hammer-on and pull-off techniques together to enhance your overall blues guitar skills.

Length: 10:27 Difficulty: 3.5 Members Only
Lesson 136

The Quick Change

The 12 bar form is a staple in the world of blues music. However, there are plenty of different ways to arrange it. This lesson covers what is commonly called "The Quick Change."

Length: 15:15 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Lesson 137

Starting on the IV Chord

Hawkeye demonstrates how to change up a traditional 12 bar blues progression by starting on the IV chord.

Length: 16:51 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Lesson 138

The Talking Blues

Hawkeye demonstrates yet another form of blues known as the "Talking Blues." This style is indicative of its name. It features a talking vocal style played over a I, IV, V chord progression.

Length: 24:43 Difficulty: 4.0 Members Only
Lesson 139

Utilizing 9th Chords

Need a slightly different voicing to spice up your playing? 9th chords will give your blues playing a colorful, urban sound.

Length: 24:53 Difficulty: 3.5 Members Only
Lesson 140

Minor Tuning, Major Sound

Hawkeye breaks out his slide and demonstrates how chord progressions in major keys can be played in open minor tunings.

Length: 4:43 Difficulty: 1.0 Members Only
Lesson 141

Style of Elmore James

Hawkeye offers up some tricks and techniques that Elmore James utilized in his style of playing.

Length: 25:52 Difficulty: 3.5 Members Only
Lesson 142

Style of Son House

In lesson 142, Hawkeye dives into the style of Son House. House pioneered an innovative style featuring strong, repetitive rhythms often played with a slide.

Length: 14:32 Difficulty: 3.5 Members Only

About Hawkeye Herman View Full Biography ""One of America's finest acoustic guitarists and blues educators."
Cascade Blues Association

"Herman plays with a sensitive, reflective touch that continually draws attention to his vocals, which are effectively understated and free of affectation... Herman can rock with the best of them. A solid choice for fans of traditional acoustic blues."
Living Blues Magazine

" ...plays haunting music on a mournful guitar."
Los Angeles Times

"The only thing better than hearing this live album is seeing Hawkeye Herman in the flesh. Whether adding his own spin to blues classics or offering his own songs, Herman is a one-man history of blues, noteworthy guitar player and inimitable communicator. Miss him at your peril."
Blues Access

With over 40 years of performing experience, Michael "Hawkeye" Herman personifies the range of possibilities in blues and folk music. His dynamic blues guitar playing and vocal abilities have won him a faithful following and he leads a very active touring schedule of performances at festivals, concerts, school programs and educational workshops throughout the U.S., Canada, and Europe. His original music has been included in video dramas and documentaries and in four hit theatrical productions.

In 2000, Hawkeye was awarded Philadelphia's Barrymore Award for Excellence in Theatre for best original music in a theatrical production. "Everyday Living," Hawkeye's first nationally released album from 1987, now reissued on CD, features the late blues giants Charles Brown and "Cool Papa" Sadler, and established the demand for his now long-standing festival and concert touring. His latest CDs and DVD, "Blues Alive!" (CD), "It's All Blues To Me" (CD), and "Hawkeye Live In Concert" (DVD) have been greeted with rave reviews. Hawkeye's journalistic efforts have been published in numerous national and regional blues and music-related periodicals.

In 1998 he was the recipient of the Blues Foundation's "Keeping The Blues Alive" award for achievement in education. He served on the Board of Directors of the Blues Foundation for six years. Hawkeye was inducted into the Iowa Blues Hall of fame in 2004. In September of 2005, Hawkeye composed, at the request of the British Broadcasting Company (BBC), "Katrina, Oh Katrina (Hurricane Blues)," detailing the hurricane disaster on the Gulf Coast. The song was aired to over 7 million listeners on the popular "BBC Today" program. He is the cofounder of the Rogue Valley Blues Festival, Ashland, OR.

This musician has definitely carved out a spot for himself in the contemporary acoustic blues/folk field, and has earned a reputation as one of the most accomplished artists in the genre, and audiences throughout the US/Canada/Europe have come to know and appreciate Hawkeye's talent, dedication, and captivating performances.

Acoustic Guitar Lessons

Our acoustic guitar lessons are taught by qualified instructors with various backgrounds with the instrument.


Mitch Reed Mitch Reed

Mitch teaches his interpretation of the classic "Cannonball Rag." This song provides beginning and intermediate guitarists...

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Eve Goldberg Eve Goldberg

Eve talks about the boom-chuck strum pattern. This strum pattern will completely change the sound of your playing.

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Nick Amodeo Nick Amodeo

Nick explains how to play some of the most commonly used chords in the bluegrass genre.

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Justin Roth Justin Roth

In this lesson Justin introduces his series on playing with a capo and dishes out some basic tips, including how to properly...

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Marcelo Berestovoy Marcelo Berestovoy

Marcelo teaches the eight basic right hand moves for the Rumba Flamenca strum pattern. He then shows you how to apply it...

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Danny Voris Danny Voris

Lesson 7 is all about arpeggios. Danny provides discussion and exercises designed to build your right hand skills.

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Erik Mongrain Erik Mongrain

Erik expounds on the many possibilities of open tunings and the new harmonics that you can use in them. He explains what...

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David Isaacs David Isaacs

JamPlay welcomes David Isaacs to our teacher roster. With his first lesson Dave explains his approach to playing guitar with...

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Hawkeye Herman Hawkeye Herman

Hawkeye teaches several Robert Johnson licks in this lesson. These licks are played with a slide in open G tuning.

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Peter Einhorn Peter Einhorn

JamPlay is proud to introduce jazz guitarist Peter Einhorn. In this lesson series, Peter will discuss and demonstrate a way...

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Electric Guitar Lesson Samples

Our electric guitar lessons are taught by instructors with an incredible amount of teaching experience.


Kenny Ray Kenny Ray

Albert Collins brought a lot of style to the blues scene. In this lesson, Kenny breaks down Albert's style for you to learn.

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Danny Morris Danny Morris

Hone in on your right hand and focus on getting in the groove. You'll only play one note during this lesson, but it'll be...

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John March John March

Take a new look at the fretboard and learn where to find a voicing that works. There are techniques that simplify the fretboard...

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Dave Weiner Dave Weiner

Dave "David J" Weiner returns with a lesson on how to play with style and attitude. He covers all the basic techniques you'll...

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Paul Musso Paul Musso

JamPlay is proud to welcome senior professor and Coordinator of Guitar Studies at the University of Colorado at Denver,...

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Dennis Hodges Dennis Hodges

Learn a variety of essential techniques commonly used in the metal genre, including palm muting, string slides, and chord...

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Brent Mason Brent Mason

Learn Nashville style country guitar from one of the most recorded guitarists in history. Check out rhythm grooves, solos,...

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DJ Phillips DJ Phillips

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

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Prashant Aswani Prashant Aswani

Do you want to play more musical sounding solos? Do you want to play solos with more emotion behind them? Maybe you're the...

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Mark Brennan Mark Brennan

Mark Brennan teaches this classic rock song by Jethro Tull. Released on the album of the same name in 1971, this song features...

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A JamPlay membership gives you access to every lesson, from every teacher on our staff. Additionally, there is no restriction on how many times you watch a lesson. Watch as many times as you need.

Live Lessons

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Chord Library

Each chord in our library contains a full chart, related tablature, and a photograph of how the chord is played. A comprehensive learning resource for any guitarist.

Scale Library

Our software allows you to document your progress for any lesson, including notes and percent of the lesson completed. This gives you the ability to document what you need to work on, and where you left off.

Custom Chord Sheets

At JamPlay, not only can you reference our Chord Library, but you can also select any variety of chords you need to work on, and generate your own printable chord sheet.

Backing Tracks

Jam-along backing tracks give the guitarist a platform for improvising and soloing. Our backing tracks provide a wide variety of tracks from different genres of music, and serves as a great learning tool.

Interactive Games

We have teachers covering beginner lessons, rock, classic rock, jazz, bluegrass, fingerstyle, slack key and more. Learn how to play the guitar from experienced players, in a casual environment.

Beginners Welcome.. and Up

Unlike a lot of guitar websites and DVDs, we start our Beginner Lessons at the VERY start of the learning process, as if you just picked up a guitar for the first time.Our teaching is structured for all players.

Take a minute to compare JamPlay to other traditional and new methods of learning guitar. Our estimates for "In-Person" lessons below are based on a weekly face-to-face lesson for $40 per hour.

Price Per Lesson < $0.01 $4 - $5 $30 - $50 Free
Money Back Guarantee Sometimes n/a
Number of Instructors 82 1 – 3 1 Zillions
Interaction with Instructors Daily Webcam Sessions Weekly
Professional Instructors Luck of the Draw Luck of the Draw
New Lessons Daily Weekly Minutely
Structured Lessons
Learn Any Style Sorta
Track Progress
HD Video - Sometimes
Multiple Camera Angles Sometimes - Sometimes
Accurate Tabs Maybe Maybe
Scale/Chord Libraries
Custom JamTracks
Interactive Games
Community
Learn in Sweatpants Socially Unacceptable
Gasoline Needed $0.00 $0.00 ~$4 / gallon! $0.00

Mike H.

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I am 66 years young and I still got it! I would have never known this if it had not been for Jamplay! I feel like a 12 year old kid with a new guitar! Ha! I cannot express enough how great you're website is! It is for beginners and advanced pickers! I am an advanced picker and thought I had lost it but thanks to you all, I found it again! Even though I only play by ear, I have been a member a whopping whole two weeks now and have already got Brent's country shuffle and country blues down and of course with embellishments. Thank you all for your wonderful program!


Greg J.

"With Jamplay I can fit in a random session when I have time and I can go at my own pace"
 

I'm a fifty eight year old newbie who owns a guitar which has been sitting untouched in a corner for about seven years now. Last weekend I got inspired to pick it up and finally learn how to play after watching an amazing Spanish guitarist on TV. So, here I am. I'm starting at the beginning with Steve Eulberg and I couldn't be happier (except for the sore fingers :) Some day I'm going to play like Steve! I'm self employed with a hectic schedule. With Jamplay I can fit in a random session when I have time and I can go at my own pace, rewinding and replaying the videos until I get it. This is a very enjoyable diversion from my work yet I still feel like I'm accomplishing something worthwhile. Thanks a lot, Greg


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I am commenting here to tell you and everyone at JamPlay that I believe this is the absolute best site for guitar students. I truly enjoy learning to play the guitar on JamPlay.com. Yes, I said the words, ""enjoy learning."" It is by far the best deal for the money.



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