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Take Guitar Lessons from DJ Phillips

DJ is a Guitar instructor at JamPlay.com

DJ Phillips has 202 guitar lessons and videos at JamPlay, with 116 intermediate lessons, 59 song lessons, 10 lessons in our Artist Series and 17 Lick & Riff Library entries. Use the tabs below to learn more.

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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.

Lesson 1

Series Introduction

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

Length: 2:30
Lesson 2

12 Bar Blues

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

Length: 13:18
Lesson 3

Rhythmic Variations

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

Length: 8:48
Lesson 4

12 Bar Blues Chord Variations

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

Length: 6:22
Lesson 5

Minor Pentatonic Scale

Time to take a break from the 12 bar blues and start mastering some lead techniques. This...

Length: 8:13
Lesson 6

Minor Pentatonic Scale...

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

Length: 11:10
Lesson 7

SRV - The House Is Rockin'

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

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Lesson 8

Funky Blues Rhythm

Now that you've mastered some SRV, DJ is going to show you some funky blues rhythms that...

Length: 8:44
Lesson 9

Minor Pentatonic in...

DJ begins a discussion of the minor pentatonic scale patterns. He demonstrates the A...

Length: 12:16
Lesson 10

Minor Pentatonic in...

Continuing on with the minor pentatonic scale, DJ covers the second position. As with...

Length: 10:11
Lesson 11

Minor Pentatonic in...

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

Length: 7:09
Lesson 12

Minor Pentatonic in...

In this lesson, DJ covers the A minor pentatonic scale in 7th position. He includes licks...

Length: 8:49
Lesson 13

Minor Pentatonic in...

This lesson covers the 9th position of the A minor pentatonic scale. DJ provides licks,...

Length: 15:00
Lesson 14

Moving Positions

Now that DJ has covered all five patterns of the minor pentatonic scale, he explains how...

Length: 6:12
Lesson 15

Major Pentatonic

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

Length: 17:34
Lesson 16

Moving Across Positions

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

Length: 5:15
Lesson 17

Combining Major and...

DJ demonstrates how to combine the major and minor pentatonic scales. He provides a number...

Length: 12:54
Lesson 18

Solo and Lead Lines

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

Length: 9:13
Lesson 19


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

Length: 6:10
Lesson 20


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

Length: 7:59
Lesson 21

Building Chords on the...

DJ begins a discussion of colorful dominant chord voicings. He demonstrates how to build...

Length: 9:38
Lesson 22

Building Chords on the...

Continuing on from lesson 21, DJ explains how to build dominant chords from root notes...

Length: 8:26
Lesson 23

Using Different Voicings

In lesson 23, DJ demonstrates how various chord voicings can be used while playing rhythm...

Length: 4:49
Lesson 24

Mute Raking

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

Length: 5:08
Lesson 25

Organ Licks

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

Length: 4:11
Lesson 26

Volume Swells

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

Length: 4:37
Lesson 27

Walking Bass and Upstroke...

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

Length: 6:51
Lesson 28


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

Length: 5:28
Lesson 29

Wah Pedals

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

Length: 3:50
Lesson 30


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

Length: 8:37
Lesson 31

Aspects of Tone

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

Length: 21:41
Lesson 32

Minor Blues

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

Length: 4:57
Lesson 33

Using the Dominant V7...

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

Length: 4:14
Lesson 34

Minor Turnaround

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

Length: 6:13
Lesson 35

Minor 7 Voicings

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

Length: 9:12
Lesson 36

Minor 6th Voicings

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

Length: 8:53
Lesson 37

Extensions of the V7...

DJ explains how altered extensions such as the b9 and #9 can be added to the V7 chord...

Length: 8:35
Lesson 38

Scale Options

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

Length: 2:21
Lesson 39

Minor Scale Positions

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

Length: 5:11
Lesson 40

T-Bone Walker

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

Length: 31:23
Lesson 41

T-Bone Shuffle

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

Length: 29:26
Lesson 42

Skills and Concepts...

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

Length: 17:42
Lesson 43


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

Length: 13:26
Lesson 44

Blues with DJ: More...

Dj is back yet again with more on the style of Bo Diddley. Here is will dive more into...

Length: 22:15
Lesson 45

Implementing Bo Diddley's...

Dj brings a kicking finish to the style of Bo Diddley by teaching you how to implement...

Length: 10:59
Lesson 46

Swing Blues Solo - Phrase...

DJ returns to his blues guitar series with the introduction of a complete blues solo....

Length: 3:38
Lesson 47

Swing Blues Solo - Phrase...

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

Length: 3:10
Lesson 48

Swing Blues Solo - Phrase...

DJ is back with another phrase of his swing blues solo. The third phrase of the first...

Length: 3:22
Lesson 49

Swing Blues Solo - Phrase...

The fourth phrase of your first solo has a lot of pentatonic influence in it. You've also...

Length: 2:29
Lesson 50

Swing Blues Solo - Phrase...

We're back to the second phrase in the long form blues again. This lick picks up where...

Length: 3:11
Lesson 51

Swing Blues Solo - Phrase...

DJ is back with the sixth phrase of his Swing Blues Solo. We're now at the second turnaround...

Length: 4:26
Lesson 52

Swing Blues Solo - Phrase...

We're back to the top in the 3rd chorus of the blues solo. This lick starts to amp up...

Length: 3:47
Lesson 53

Swing Blues Solo - Phrase...

DJ is back with the eighth phrase in the swing blues solo. The second phrase of the 3rd...

Length: 3:14
Lesson 54

Swing Blues Solo - Phrase...

DJ is back with the ninth phrase in the swing blues solo. For the third time, we find...

Length: 4:46
Lesson 55

Swing Blues Solo - Phrase...

We really start to add some gusto to the solo for our final three phrases. This lick uses...

Length: 3:40
Lesson 56

Swing Blues Solo - Phrase...

The eleventh phrase of our long form blues solo continues to build on the previous phrase....

Length: 3:34
Lesson 57

Swing Blues Solo - Phrase...

DJ is back with the final phrase of the swing blues solo. This turnaround lick uses quick...

Length: 5:42
Lesson 58

Straight Blues Solo...

Now that you've completed the first solo of a long form blues, it's time to tackle the...

Length: 3:13
Lesson 59

Straight Blues Solo...

Dig into the second phrase of our straight blues solo! This one uses double stops, bends,...

Length: 3:10
Lesson 60

Straight Blues Solo...

The first turnaround in our straight blues solo uses a low walking melody along with a...

Length: 2:53
Lesson 61

Straight Blues Solo...

As we return to the top for the second round of our long form, we hear a familiar melody....

Length: 2:36
Lesson 62

Straight Blues Solo...

We're getting into the meat of this solo and it's time we started rocking! We amp up the...

Length: 2:59
Lesson 63

Straight Blues Solo...

We've now reached the second turnaround of our long form blues. This phrase gets a little...

Length: 4:08
Lesson 64

Straight Blues Solo...

Here, we return to the top and continue the funky feel from the turnaround. This lick...

Length: 3:41
Lesson 65

Straight Blues Solo...

The next lick in our long form straight blues is all about syncopation and getting that...

Length: 1:59

Having roots in Folk, Celtic, and Gospel music, Country and Country Western evolved rapidly in the 1920's. This genre of music has spawned two of the top selling solo artists of all time. Elvis Presley, and Garth Brooks.

Lesson 1

Introduction to Country

This short lesson will introduce you to the country style of playing and provide some...

Length: 2:04
Lesson 2

Western Swing

DJ gets to the roots of the country music genre with a lesson on Western Swing.

Length: 5:50
Lesson 3

Roly Poly

In lesson 3, DJ teaches a short song called "Roly Poly." If you ever find yourself jamming...

Length: 5:22
Lesson 4

Classic Country

DJ discusses the classic country style. He explains the rhythmic and structural differences...

Length: 6:30
Lesson 5

Chicken Pickin' and...

With lesson 5, DJ starts to discuss elements of the modern country style. This includes...

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Lesson 6

Hybrid Picking

In this lesson, DJ discusses some of the finer points of the hybrid picking technique.

Length: 15:05
Lesson 7

Electric Country, Western...

In this lesson, DJ begins to talk more in depth about modern electric country guitar....

Length: 11:11
Lesson 8

Eldon Shamblin, Western...

Lesson 8 continues to cover the western swing style of electric country. Eldon Shamblin...

Length: 13:42
Lesson 9

Twin Guitar Boogie's...

This lesson covers the twin lead section of the song "Twin Guitar Boogie."

Length: 17:59
Lesson 10

Twin Lead Solo: Part...

DJ breaks down the second part of the twin lead solo from "Twin Guitar Boogie."

Length: 14:57
Lesson 11

Twin Guitar Boogie's...

Finalizing his teaching on the Twin Guitar Boogie with emphasis on Eldon Shamblin, DJ...

Length: 21:55
Lesson 12

Twin Guitar Boogie Techniques

Lesson 12 covers all the techniques involved in the previous lessons on the Twin Guitar...

Length: 7:21
Lesson 13

Solo Building

DJ takes the techniques he discussed in lesson 12 and helps you create a solo over a standard...

Length: 17:33
Lesson 14


Lesson 14 delves into the realm of fingerpicking.

Length: 17:44
Lesson 15

Solo and Improvisation

In lesson 15 DJ demonstrates the techniques used by Merle Travis to build a solo, and...

Length: 12:15
Lesson 16

Guitar Boogie Pt. 1

Lesson 16 starts a 3 part series on Arthur Smith's "Guitar Boogie."

Length: 47:42
Lesson 17

Guitar Boogie Pt. 2

In lesson 17, DJ completes his note for note demonstration of "Guitar Boogie."

Length: 30:39
Lesson 18

Guitar Boogie Concepts

In this lesson, DJ takes a look at some of the country guitar concepts used in the song...

Length: 16:13
Lesson 19

Whistle Stop

In this lesson, DJ teaches the song "Whistle Stop" by legendary guitarist Jimmy Bryant.

Length: 19:41
Lesson 20

Yodeling Guitar

DJ demonstrates the song "Yodeling Guitar" by Jimmy Bryant.

Length: 32:25
Lesson 21

Joy Ride

DJ teaches the song "Joy Ride" as performed by Jimmy Bryant.

Length: 30:37
Lesson 22

Jimmy Bryant Concepts

Now that DJ has covered "Whistle Stop" and "Joy Ride," he'll be looking at some of the...

Length: 23:05
Lesson 23

Got a Lot of Rhythm

This lesson covers the tune Got a Lot of Rhythm which features the playing of Hank Garland.

Length: 10:30
Lesson 24

I Need Your Love Tonight

In lesson 24, DJ takes a look at an Elvis Presley song "I Need Your Love Tonight."

Length: 19:55
Lesson 25

Sugarfoot Rag

In lesson 25, DJ continues his in depth look at Hank Garland's playing with a demonstration...

Length: 32:43
Lesson 26

Walkin' the Floor

DJ takes a look at "Walkin' the Floor" by classic country guitarist Leon Rhodes.

Length: 29:00
Lesson 27

Honey Fingers Pt. 1

DJ Phillips teaches the progression, structure and melody of the song "Honey Fingers."

Length: 35:30
Lesson 28

Honey Fingers Pt. 2

In lesson 28, DJ demonstrates the entire guitar solo for the song "Honey Fingers."

Length: 27:13
Lesson 29

Applying Concepts and...

Looking back on the lessons on Leon Rhodes' playing, DJ offers up a lesson on applying...

Length: 11:49
Lesson 30

Luther Perkins

DJ discusses the tic-tac techniques used by Johnny Cash guitarist Luther Perkins.

Length: 18:53
Lesson 31

Tic-Tac Rhythms Applied

Looking at guitarist Luther Perkins, DJ helps you to apply the tic-tac rhythms in your...

Length: 7:34
Lesson 32

Style of James Burton...

DJ returns to his country lesson series to profile legendary country guitarist James Burton!...

Length: 16:34
Lesson 33

Style of James Burton...

DJ is back with the second lesson in his James Burton mini series. For this one, DJ takes...

Length: 13:21
Lesson 34

Style of James Burton...

In lesson 34 of his country series, DJ is expanding on his look at James Burton. In this...

Length: 12:40
Lesson 35

Style of James Burton...

To finalize the concepts and techniques portion of his mini-series on James Burton, DJ...

Length: 11:57
Lesson 36

Style of James Burton...

Now that you have all the lick based elements and concepts under your belt, it's time...

Length: 4:50

DJ Phillips profiles the guitarists that created and nurtured the funk sound.

Lesson 1

Funk Series Overview

DJ Phillips starts out his funk guitar series with an overview of what he'll be covering...

Length: 2:38
Lesson 2

Jimmy Nolen

In this lesson DJ profiles guitarist Jimmy Nolan, one of the original members of the James...

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Lesson 3

"Catfish" Collins

DJ introduces Catfish Collins and begins to profile his sounds and technique.

Length: 10:03
Lesson 4

Catfish Collins #2

DJ takes another in depth look at Catfish Collins' playing style with "in the style of"...

Length: 14:55
Lesson 5

Leo Nocentelli

DJ begins to talk about Leo Nocentelli, the guitarist for The Meters.

Length: 3:57
Lesson 6

Leo Nocentelli #2

DJ breaks down an "in the style of" lick made famous by Leo Nocentelli.

Length: 5:06
Lesson 7

Leo Nocentelli #3

DJ provides yet another look at a famous "in the style of" lick from guitarist Leo Nocentelli.

Length: 4:02
Lesson 8

Leo Nocentelli #4

DJ provides another "in the style of" lick from The Meters' guitaris Leo Nocentelli.

Length: 4:37
Lesson 9

Leo Nocentelli #5

DJ provides the final lick in the style of Leo Nocentelli.

Length: 5:05
Lesson 10

Curtis Mayfield

DJ begins lesson 10 of his funk series by going over one of Curtis Mayfield's signature...

Length: 4:10
Lesson 11

Curtis Mayfield #2

DJ returns with another look at a signature look from guitarist Curtis Mayfield.

Length: 5:25
Lesson 12

Curtis Mayfield #3

DJ returns with another "in the style of" lick from Curtis Mayfield.

Length: 6:26
Lesson 13

Curtis Mayfield #4

DJ demonstrates an "in the style of" lick from Curtis Mayfield that centers around an...

Length: 3:56
Lesson 14

Curtis Mayfield #5

DJ demonstrates the fifth "in the style of" lick from Curtis Mayfield.

Length: 3:38
Lesson 15

Curtis Mayfield #6

DJ offers up the final "in the style of" lick from Curtis Mayfield.

Length: 5:28
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Learn more About DJ Phillips

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. 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."