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SRV - The House Is Rockin' (Guitar Lesson)

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DJ Phillips

SRV - The House Is Rockin'

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

Taught by DJ Phillips in Blues Guitar with DJ seriesLength: 49:58Difficulty: 3.0 of 5
Chapter 1: (05:16) Lesson Introduction Now that DJ has taught you some basic rhythm and lead tools, he will begin to apply them to a practical musical context. In this lesson, he will demonstrate how to apply concepts from previous lessons to "The House Is Rockin'" by Stevie Ray Vaughn.

The Introduction

To play the bulk of this song, you must have mastered the Chuck Berry version of the blues shuffle pattern. This particular shuffle is played with a quick straight eighth note rhythm feel. The shuffle pattern utilized in 'The House Is Rockin' is a slight variation on the Chuck Berry pattern. Within this variation, the pinkie moves throughout the pattern to fret various melody notes. This creates a harmonically more complex version of the shuffle pattern. Watch closely at 01:35 as DJ demonstrates this variation. Throughout the remainder of the scene, you have several opportunities to play this introduction segment along with him.

Key of the Song

DJ demonstrates this song in the key of B major. On the original recording, Stevie Ray Vaughn played in the key of C major. However, Stevie almost always tuned his guitar down a half step. Consequently, the recording sounds as though it is played in B major. If you wish to play along with the recording, it is essential that you are aware of these details.
Chapter 2: (03:34) Chorus The chorus section immediately follows the eight bar introduction. The chorus lasts for 8 bars. A new variation is applied to the Chuck Berry version of the shuffle pattern throughout the chorus section. The same pattern is transposed from the I chord to the V chord. Here is a measure by measure breakdown of the chord changes in this section:

Measures 1-4: I chord (B)
Measures 5-6: V chord (F#)
Measures 7-8: I chord (B)

Note: Tablature and notation to all musical examples presented in this lesson can be found under the "Supplemental Content" tab.

You have several opportunities to practice the chorus section along with DJ in this scene. He gradually increases the tempo as the scene progresses.
Chapter 3: (03:46) Verse The verse section is comprised of a 12 bar blues progression. This progression utilizes the "Long V" variation that DJ discussed in lesson 4 of this series. Here's a quick review of this variation:

Measures 1-4: I chord (B)
Measures 5-6: IV chord (E)
Measures 7-8: I chord (B)
Measures 9-10: V chord (F#)
Measures 11-12: I chord (B)

The verse is played with the shuffle variation that DJ demonstrated in the previous scene. This basic pattern is transposed to each of the chords in the 12 bar blues progression. Watch carefully at 01:43 as he demonstrates the verse. Once you have mastered this rhythm figure on your own, return to the lesson video and play along with DJ. He demonstrates this rhythm slowly at first. At 02:40, he provides an example of the tempo played on the original recording from In Step.
Chapter 4: (08:42) Solo Part 1 The Harmony

When playing any solo, it is absolutely essential that you have an awareness of what chord you are playing against at all times. This will allow you to highlight key resolutions within the chord changes. If you do not highlight these key resolutions, you run the risk of playing melodic lines that sound random and out of place.

This song features two solos. A piano solo comes first, followed by Stevie Ray Vaughn's guitar solo. Underneath the piano solo, the guitar plays the same 12 bar blues pattern employed during the verse sections. However, during the guitar solo, the rhythm progression changes. The first eight bars of the guitar solo contain the same changes as the 12 bar blues progression. The next eight bars of the chord progression feature the V chord. The dominant V chord is repeated for an extended four measures to build tension at the end of the solo section. Here is a measure-by-measure breakdown of the chord changes under the guitar solo:

Measures 1-4: I chord
Measures 5-6: IV chord
Measures 7-8: I chord
Measures 9-16: V chord

String Bends

Like many blues solos, the solo to "The House Is Rockin'" features numerous string bends. If you are new to this technique, read through the guidelines listed below. This information is taken from David MacKenzie's Phase 1 lesson pertaining to bending.

A. Set-Up Tips for Comfortable Bending

The way in which your guitar is set up will have a profound impact on string bending. A guitar's set-up typically refers to the gauge of strings used, the tuning (standard tuning, down a half step, etc.), and the action height.

Most rock players prefer to play with lighter strings (usually 9 or 10 gauge) because they are easier to bend. The tone of smaller gauge strings is also more appropriate for this style. When it comes to blues, country, and jazz however, most professionals prefer a heavier gauge set (usually 11's or higher). Heavier strings are more effective for producing a biting, "twangy" sound.

The disadvantage to playing with heavy gauge strings is that they are much more difficult to bend. Most players recommend starting with a lower gauge string and gradually working your way up to a larger set. Also, it should be taken into consideration that some people simply have smaller, weaker hands than others. If bending the strings causes any discomfort or unnecessary fatigue, it's definitely a good idea to switch to a smaller set. Many players in the 80's injured their hands as a result of bending large strings. Stevie Ray Vaughn popularized using very large strings (13 gauge) to create his signature tone. What people didn't realize was that Stevie had absolutely massive hands and tuned his guitar down a half step.

Note: If you decide to change to a new string gauge, a new set-up must be performed. Some intonation, action, and minor truss rod adjustment may be necessary. Have this work done by a reliable professional.

B. Proper Technique for Bending

As a rule, it is always important to play with good classical technique. Solid left-hand technique is contingent upon several factors. First, the thumb must be perpendicular to the neck, resting approximately halfway up it. The rest of the left-hand fingers must be perpendicular to the fingerboard. They must be arched and bent at each individual finger joint.

Left-hand technique for bending is the only exception to this rule. In the context of the bend, it is highly beneficial to allow the thumb to come up over the neck. This enables you to have better leverage on the string. Using classical technique, you are relying solely on the strength of your fretting fingers to perform the bend. By bringing the thumb over the neck, you are combining its strength with your fretting fingers.

C. Bending Direction

The direction in which the string should be bent (towards the floor or towards your face) is dependent upon which string you are playing. Generally, the bass strings should be pulled downward, and the treble strings should be pushed upward. Otherwise, you run the risk of running out of room on the neck. There are some exceptions to this rule however. Due to the fingering of certain musical lines, there are some instances when it is easiest to pull the G string downwards. You might also find the need to push the D string upwards.

The direction in which you bend a string especially those located in the middle of the fretboard is mainly a matter of personal preference. If you watch JamPlay instructor Mark Brennan for example, he likes to bend many notes on the G string towards the floor. Dave MacKenzie typically bends notes on the first through the fourth strings in an upward motion (towards the ceiling). He prefers to bend notes on the sixth and fifth strings towards the floor.

D. Pitch Control

To ensure that your bends are in tune, first play the fretted note of the pitch you are bending up to. For example, if you want to bend the 7th fret of the G string up a whole step, first play the note "E" on the 9th fret. This will give your ears a reference as to what the bend should sound like. Be sure to practice bends of different intervals. Half step and whole step bends are the most common. However, bends of larger intervals such as a step and a half as well as 2 step bends are also common.

The Solo

The solo begins with a string bend played at the 9th fret of the G string. This bend alternates with a common double stop played within the B minor pentatonic pattern. A "double stop" is formed by playing two notes simultaneously. Make sure that the bend does not ring as the string is returning down to its resting point. The string should only ring as you are performing the initial bend. Watch DJ at 05:46 for an example of what to do and what not to do.
Chapter 5: (11:04) Solo Part 2 DJ walks you through the next phrase of the solo in this scene. A full transcription of the solo can be found under the "Supplemental Content" tab.

Mixing Scales

The major pentatonic scale is frequently mixed with the minor pentatonic scale throughout the solo. This technique is quite common in the blues genre. For more information about the major pentatonic scale, please visit lesson 4 from Matt Brown's Phase 2 Rock series as well as the JamPlay Scale Library.
Chapter 6: (10:19) Closing Riffs DJ progresses through the solo and teaches you the licks played over the final eight bars. All of these licks are played over the repetition of the V chord that DJ discussed earlier in the lesson. Notice how an F7#9 is played over the final two bars. The inclusion of this chord brings the solo to a dissonant and exciting climax.

At 09:35 DJ provides you with an opportunity to play the entire solo along with him at tempo.
Chapter 7: (06:12) Finishing Lick The ending of the song closes with a tag. A tag is a brief, repeated portion of music that occurs at the ending of a song. In this case, the V chord is repeated for an extra two bars as Stevie sings the line, "the house is rockin', don't bother come on in." Then, some guitar licks that imply the tonic chord, B7, are applied to the final measures. Finally, a bII9 to I9 chord change closes out the song. This chromatic walk down is a very common ending motif in the blues and jazz genres. Notice how the root notes are omitted from these final two chords. The guitar does not need to play the low root notes since they are covered by the bass player.

Video Subtitles / Captions


Member Comments about this Lesson

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

Sasquatch74Sasquatch74 replied

Great lesson ! Just a little problem at minutes 2:23 from the 6th part closing riffs, the audio still goes on, but the video stops and Dj is like a statue...

Bradley.ConwayBradley.Conway replied

Hello Sasquatch74! It sounds like you may need to select a lower video quality setting. You can do that by clicking the "HD" icon located in the lower right of the lesson screen, which will bring up a small menu where you select different video resolutions. I'd recommend starting with 720p and working your way down until you come to the optimal resolution. I hope this helps! HAPPY JAMMING!!

Sasquatch74Sasquatch74 replied

Thank you very much for your answer, but even at low quality, it happens the same.. Nevermind, got the tabs +audio, gonna be enough for this part. Thank you anyway. (Ps : this DJ cursus is the only one 'til now that has a very bad audio quality...)

chasberger310chasberger310 replied

Love the challenge of this one b/c my deformed pinky (from sports injuries) just doesn't want to hit the intro notes properly. May take me a week or two to get this down.

rnclassicrnclassic replied

This song is way too tough for beginners. I have small hands and the 7-12 fret span was too much of a stretch. I understand your trying to teach 12 bar basics, but this is a bit too much. I would think you could come up with a tune a little less difficult for a beginner

Jason.MounceJason.Mounce replied

HI there rnclassic! I'm sorry to hear you're having trouble with this material. Please note however that this lesson series exists in Phase 2 and is not a beginner based lesson series. All of the lesson series found in this section of the site will assume you have a basic level of playing. It's certainly okay to include some of this material in your practicing and learning regimen, but if you are finding that some of the techniques or concepts are beyond your current capability, please focus your practice in those areas before trying to move to far too fast elsewhere.

WallyG3WallyG3 replied

really a stretch with the little finger. good exercise.

PhilDuggs95PhilDuggs95 replied

Did anybody else find this song to be an endurance test for their fretting hand while playing to speed with SRV's original recording?

kgordonkgordon replied

Video 6 with the last part of the solo freezes at around 2:40 !!!!!!

Jason.MounceJason.Mounce replied

I wasn't able to replicate the issue for video 6 on any of the quality settings. I recommend making sure your browser is up to date and clearing it's cache to be sure there isn't any out of date information about this page. If you're still having trouble, please contact us at [email protected]

mebekingmebeking replied

Ok, so I thought I was not getting the rhythm until I realized the TAB is FUBAR. This might actually be a good thing because I will have to learn to play by ear instead of "play by number." Can't believe that I am actually twangin' out some SRV....

mebekingmebeking replied

waaaay toooo much talk....

mebekingmebeking replied

OK today I appreciated the talking. Mood swings...

lancegentilelancegentile replied

you go too fast and don't give me time to get it. I go over and over it and then give up because I'm not getting anywhere but frustrated. This happened with you on your electric country lessons too

Smurfy1967Smurfy1967 replied

Look at the tab mate, and play it in very small sections then link them together. I struggled at first, but after repeating the lessons and walking away when I was struggling I`ve got it. I like his style, he messes up and passes it off in a nice way. Keep at it and learn small chunks, that`s the wy I got it.

CajunPlayerCajunPlayer replied

I've been listening to SRV and House is a Rockin... Dang that song is fast. Not sure I'lll ever be able to play that fast.

CajunPlayerCajunPlayer replied

Holy cow... I am 61 and have been playing rhythm guitar for a bunch of years and this lesson is really stretching my little finger all the way till tomorrow. Thanks for the lesson.. May take more than 10 minutes to get it right.

lorenzo carmanlorenzo carman replied

like the lesson do bit of a stretch for me but thats how we grow

lorenzo carmanlorenzo carman replied

in the first 4 measures of the solo he full bends the E not 9 but 8 times or am i creasy?

HoppyRooHoppyRoo replied

Good lesson! Glad I have been playing around with pentatonic scales for some time before trying this tho... Pretty big jump from previous lesson... For those complaining, tabs look close enough for me.

fwernerfwerner replied

Hi, to much bla bla blaaaa. Just play the song before and dont talk to much.

AaronMillerAaronMiller replied

Thanks fwerner, all of our new lessons have a "song demonstration" in them just for this reason. Everybody learns differently and some people just need to see hand positions without all the talking.

nate_thegreatnate_thegreat replied

He shouldn't have to "play the song first", because you can easily go on youtube and find this song. The "talking" is important. It lets you take the information your ears and hands are getting, and relate it to the theory and this will help tremendously later on, when writing your own stuff.

blackgretschblackgretsch replied

Will my fingers be able to stretch more with practice?

eddienokoeddienoko replied

Ther are some mistakes in the tabs. They don't completely follow what he plays at some small parts :)

rwahardrwahard replied

wheres the rest of the video lesson for the end of the solo?

roger stacyroger stacy replied

The inaccurate tab really pisses me off!

sdlatsonsdlatson replied

Much like what a lot of people have been saying before me, the inaccurate tabs really need to be fixed. I wish someone would check up on the comments every now and then....

supanovasupanova replied

At the start of bar 7 in the solo the tab has two notes played on the third string, frets 7 and 8. This sequence appears to start in the video at 7.27, but it doesn't match the two single plain notes. I'm guessing it's actually a bend on the eighth fret note. Any clarification would be helpful.

kyliekylie replied

I have a question regarding the 1-5-1 pattern... How do you know it's an F# from the B? Counting up 5 with B as #1, I would think that it would be an F.

sdlatsonsdlatson replied

When playing a pattern by numbers, each note is two frets apart (other than 3 to 4). So if 1 is B, 2 would be C#, and 3 would be D#. Then, in this case you move down to the A string, where 4 is directly under 1, making 4 an E, then two frets up is 5, which is F#.

aze0117aze0117 replied

the unmatched tab is really annoying, and DJ seems never view the comment page?

aze0117aze0117 replied

the unmatched tab is really annoying, and DJ seems never view the comment page?

dc_ericdc_eric replied

sorry...system issues...

rancearmstrongrancearmstrong replied

too much talking. sorry just way too much extra info, distracting

rancearmstrongrancearmstrong replied

sorry, quit smoking 2 days ago , the lesson is fine, my bad

dc_ericdc_eric replied

Having a really hard time with this lesson. I can see in part 5 what is being played or where, the tab doesn't match what is being played either. I am getting incredibly frustrated here. It's not just that I'm learning something new, but that I feel like I'm guessing as what is being played. Any chance of an accurate tab that follows what DJ is playing?

dc_ericdc_eric replied

To be clear, my critique is more about the tabs, than DJ-who I think does a fine job!

dc_ericdc_eric replied

To be clear, my critique is more about the tabs, than DJ-who I think does a fine job!

dc_ericdc_eric replied

To be clear, my critique is more about the tabs, than DJ-who I think does a fine job!

dc_ericdc_eric replied

Having a really hard time with this lesson. I can see in part 5 what is being played or where, the tab doesn't match what is being played either. I am getting incredibly frustrated here. It's not just that I'm learning something new, but that I feel like I'm guessing as what is being played. Any chance of an accurate tab that follows what DJ is playing?

dc_ericdc_eric replied

Having a really hard time with this lesson. I can see in part 5 what is being played or where, the tab doesn't match what is being played either. I am getting incredibly frustrated here. It's not just that I'm learning something new, but that I feel like I'm guessing as what is being played. Any chance of an accurate tab that follows what DJ is playing?

dc_ericdc_eric replied

Having a really hard time with this lesson. I can see in part 5 what is being played or where, the tab doesn't match what is being played either. I am getting incredibly frustrated here. It's not just that I'm learning something new, but that I feel like I'm guessing as what is being played. Any chance of an accurate tab that follows what DJ is playing?

thomasgreen2201thomasgreen2201 replied

Does anyone know of any exercises to stretch out the pinky? mine bends at an awkward angle [born that way] but it's so close to getting there, I just need some stretching.

popsarockrpopsarockr replied

anyone know where to get or have a backing track for this lesson

jackster5jackster5 replied

Thank's alot. You are a wonderful teacher. You unlocked the door to Stevies HOUSE for me!!

rkobyrkoby replied

If you have not been playing for long or much in recent times then your left hand is going to hurt till you build it up and get the movements right. Try to relax and not tense up. Keep playing it and it will get better.

midlifemidlife replied

Do you start the intro with two (2) upstrokes? That seems to work best for me. BTW - I am a metalhead, but loving your blues lessons. I can already see they are making me a better player.

destrossecretdestrossecret replied

Sheesh, my pinky is shedding skin practicing this! Great lesson!

strat9strat9 replied

The back of my wrist gets sore very quickly when playing these chords. Tough to stretch the pinky. Any suggestions?

dash rendardash rendar replied

In the supplemental content, I think the reference to the F7#9 should actually be F#7#9.

sammirsammir replied

Sixth mesure in tablature is diferent then DJ play. The last two notes have to change the place.

dash rendardash rendar replied

Yes, you're right. Bar 6 of the solo.

smsullysmsully replied

Is it normal for my wrists to be really sore while trying to play this song?

dash rendardash rendar replied

My wrist is hurting something terrible, and I don't normally struggle. Fun though!

raudsarwraudsarw replied

Great lesson, your lessons are all really fun and well done.

raudsarwraudsarw replied

Oops, wrong comment box :P

beeho15beeho15 replied

I love also taking lessons from you. I have just started this series and I am really enjoying your teachings. But I also would like to see some allman bros (stormy monday or the thrill is gone that would be so awesome. what do you think?????

sammirsammir replied

There are also differences in 13th and 14th masures between tab and DJ playing.

manchildmanchild replied

great lessons you gave me the blues bug

matteyematteye replied

DJ, i'm new here. Really lovin' your teaching style!

rarsenrarsen replied

Hey DJ, I'm lovin' learning from your lessons but your blues songs are too fast for me in this phase. Any luck in slowin' it down with some Allman Bros (ie:Stormy Monday),BB (ie:The Thrill is Gone), or any Eric Slow Hands? Have a Happy Thanksgiving! Thanks, Ron

mellison55mellison55 replied

Hee Hee.... You said "pluck it" hee hee

mellison55mellison55 replied

DJ rocks......... MORE MORE MORE!!!!!!

mattbrownmattbrown replied

Sit tight for supplemental content, folks! I will hopefully get it done by Wednesday evening. Thanks!

Blues Guitar with DJ

Found in our Beginner Lesson Sets

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.

Series IntroductionLesson 1

Series Introduction

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

Length: 2:30 Difficulty: 0.5 Members Only
12 Bar BluesLesson 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 Members Only
Rhythmic VariationsLesson 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 Members Only
12 Bar Blues Chord VariationsLesson 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 Members Only
Minor Pentatonic ScaleLesson 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 Members Only
Minor Pentatonic Scale VariationsLesson 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 Members Only
SRV - The House Is Rockin'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 Members Only
Funky Blues RhythmLesson 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 Members Only
Minor Pentatonic in Open and First PositionLesson 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 Members Only
Minor Pentatonic in Second PositionLesson 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 Members Only
Minor Pentatonic in Fifth PositionLesson 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 Members Only
Minor Pentatonic in Seventh PositionLesson 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 Members Only
Minor Pentatonic in Ninth PositionLesson 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 Members Only
Moving PositionsLesson 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 Members Only
Major PentatonicLesson 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 Members Only
Moving Across PositionsLesson 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 Members Only
Combining Major and Minor PentatonicsLesson 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 Members Only
Solo and Lead LinesLesson 18

Solo and Lead Lines

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

Length: 9:13 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
RhythmLesson 19


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

Length: 6:10 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Improvising Lesson 20


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 Members Only
Building Chords on the 6th StringLesson 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 Members Only
Building Chords on the 4th and 5th StringLesson 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 Members Only
Using Different VoicingsLesson 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 Members Only
Mute RakingLesson 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 Members Only
Organ LicksLesson 25

Organ Licks

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

Length: 4:11 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Volume SwellsLesson 26

Volume Swells

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

Length: 4:37 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Walking Bass and Upstroke ShuffleLesson 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 Members Only
SlideLesson 28


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

Length: 5:28 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Wah Pedals 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 Members Only
HarmonicsLesson 30


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

Length: 8:37 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Aspects of ToneLesson 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 Members Only
Minor BluesLesson 32

Minor Blues

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

Length: 4:57 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Using the Dominant V7 ChordLesson 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 Members Only
Minor Turnaround 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 Members Only
Minor 7 VoicingsLesson 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 Members Only
Minor 6th VoicingsLesson 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 Members Only
Extensions of the V7 ChordLesson 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 Members Only
Scale OptionsLesson 38

Scale Options

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

Length: 2:21 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
Minor Scale PositionsLesson 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 Members Only
T-Bone WalkerLesson 40

T-Bone Walker

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

Length: 31:23 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
T-Bone ShuffleLesson 41

T-Bone Shuffle

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

Length: 29:26 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Skills and Concepts of T-Bone WalkerLesson 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 Members Only
Bo-DiddleyLesson 43


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

Length: 13:26 Difficulty: 1.5 Members Only
Blues with DJ: More Bo DiddleyLesson 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...

Length: 22:15 Difficulty: 2.0 Members Only
Implementing Bo Diddley's Style 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...

Length: 10:59 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Swing Blues Solo - Phrase #1Lesson 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,...

Length: 3:38 Difficulty: 2.5 Members Only
Swing Blues Solo - Phrase #2Lesson 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 Members Only
Swing Blues Solo - Phrase #3Lesson 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 Members Only
Swing Blues Solo - Phrase #4Lesson 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 Members Only
Swing Blues Solo - Phrase #5Lesson 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 Members Only
Swing Blues Solo - Phrase #6Lesson 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 Members Only
Swing Blues Solo - Phrase #7Lesson 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 Members Only
Swing Blues Solo - Phrase #8Lesson 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 Members Only
Swing Blues Solo - Phrase #9Lesson 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 Members Only
Swing Blues Solo - Phrase #10Lesson 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 Members Only
Swing Blues Solo - Phrase #11Lesson 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 Members Only
Swing Blues Solo - Phrase #12Lesson 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 Members Only
Straight Blues Solo - Phrase #1Lesson 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...

Length: 3:13 Difficulty: 3.0 Members Only
Straight Blues Solo - Phrase #2Lesson 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 Members Only
Straight Blues Solo - Phrase #3Lesson 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 Members Only
Straight Blues Solo - Phrase #4Lesson 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 Members Only
Straight Blues Solo - Phrase #5Lesson 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 Members Only
Straight Blues Solo - Phrase #6Lesson 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 Members Only
Straight Blues Solo - Phrase #7Lesson 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 Members Only
Straight Blues Solo - Phrase #8Lesson 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 Members Only
DJ Phillips

About DJ Phillips View Full Biography Like many guitar players who began playing around the same time, DJ began plunking out Nirvana and Soundgarden tunes when he first picked up the guitar in the mid-nineties. While these grunge-y roots certainly have their merit, it wasn't until DJ's eldest sister took him to a Led Zeppelin laser light show that the full potential of the guitar began to come into focus.

With Jimmy Page's Les Paul pyrotechnics as his inspiration, DJ began fervently practicing for hours on end in the suburban jungle of Southwestern Ohio. This newfound passion (combined with his complete lack of athletic prowess and physical coordination thus completely ruling out all sports) led him to form rock bands in junior high and high school. He grew to love the performance aspect of music and soon decided on it as a career path.

College led him to Nashville, Tennessee where he began to pursue a degree in Commercial Music at Belmont University. He also started another band and got his first professional theater gig the following summer. Since that summer, DJ has spent nearly every waking hour finding ways to play music and avoiding a real contribution to society in any other way.

He moved to Minneapolis after college, rocking out between theater gigs with his current rock band Brother Big Bad. He has now convinced the band to move to Nashville where music flows like water.

DJ is elated to be a part of JamPlay and is thankful for everyone's warm welcome and says "Now, let's ROCK, people."

Lesson Information

Acoustic Guitar Lessons

Acoustic Guitar

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

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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Greg Greenway Greg Greenway

Greg kicks off his series telling a little about himself and introduces the C9 tuning.

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Trevor Gordon Hall Trevor Gordon Hall

Fingerstyle guitar is a broad term that can incorporate percussive elements of playing as well as Chet Atkins/Jerry Reed...

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Alan Skowron Alan Skowron

Alan shares his background in teaching and sets the direction for his beginning bass series with simple ideas and musical...

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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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Phil Keaggy Phil Keaggy

Welcome to the Phil Keaggy Master Course! In this series introduction, Phil shows and tells us what we can expect from this...

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Evan Taucher Evan Taucher

In the classical guitar world, there seems to be a lot outdated instructional advice. And while this type of information...

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Mitch Reed Mitch Reed

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

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Pamela Goldsmith Pamela Goldsmith

Pamela brings a cap to her first 13 JamPlay lessons with another original etude inspired by the great Leo Brouwer. This is...

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Amber Russell Amber Russell

Playing fingerstyle requires the ability to play different techniques at the same time. This of course, is not always an...

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Electric Guitar Lesson Samples

Electric Guitar

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

Chris Liepe Chris Liepe

Chris brings his ingenuity to this lesson on the American folk song called "Where Did You Sleep Last Night?" Also known as...

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Steve McKinley Steve McKinley

Steve McKinley talks about evaluating your bass and keeping it in top shape. He covers neck relief, adjusting the truss rod,...

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Andy Wood Andy Wood

So how does Andy Wood pick so quickly and with such precision? Level up your speed and accuracy with Andy's near-flawless...

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Daniel Gilbert Daniel Gilbert

Known around the world for his inspirational approach to guitar instruction, Musician's Institute veteran Daniel Gilbert...

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John Shannon John Shannon

Meet John Shannon and his approach to rhythm guitar. John discusses why he put this lesson series together and what his...

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Braun Khan Braun Khan

In this lesson, Braun teaches the chord types that are commonly used in jazz harmony. Learn how to build the chords and their...

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Michael Mennell Michael Mennell

Mike introduces himself and his series.

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Yvette Young Yvette Young

Welcome to Yvette Young's series! Join Yvette as she gets creative with open tunings.

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Steve Smyth Steve Smyth

JamPlay sits down with veteran fret grinder Steve Smyth of Forbidden and The EssenEss Project. He talks about how he got...

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Andre Nieri Andre Nieri

Born in 1986 and hailing from Brazil, Andre showed musical inclination at an early age. Influenced by native Brazilian Jazz...

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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.

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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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