Acoustic Blues Guitar Teacher 4066 Toowong BC Queensland
From its source in the South, the blues’ simple but expressive forms had become by the 1960s among the most important influences on the growth of music that is popular throughout the USA.
Although instrumental accompaniment is virtually universal in the blues, the blues is basically a vocal form. Blues songs are lyrical rather than narrative; feelings are being expressed by blues singers rather than telling stories. The emotion expressed is typically one of melancholy or sadness, often due to problems in love.
To express this musically, blues performers use vocal techniques including melisma (prolonging a single syllable across several pitches), rhythmic techniques such as syncopation, and instrumental techniques for example “choking” or bending guitar strings on the neck or implementing a metal slide or bottleneck to the guitar strings to create a whining, voice-like sound.
As a musical style, the blues is characterized by expressive “microtonal” pitch inflections (blue notes), a three-line textual stanza of the form AAB, and a 12-measure kind. Normally the first two and a half measures of each line are dedicated to the last measure, singing and a half consisting of an instrumental “break” that replies, repeats, or complements the vocal line.
Acoustic Blues Guitar Teacher Toowong BC 4066 Queensland.
African influences are obvious in the blues tonality, the call-and-response pattern of the falsetto break in the vocal style, the repeated refrain arrangement of the blues stanza, and the imitation of vocal idioms by instruments, especially the guitar and harmonica.
The origins of the blues are poorly recorded. Southern black men, most of whom came from the milieu of agricultural workers derived from and largely played blues.
The first references to blues date back to the 1890s and early 1900s. In 1912 black bandleader W.C. Handy’s composition “Memphis Blues” was published. It became quite popular, and thereafter many other Tin Pan Alley tunes entitled blues began to appear.
Jefferson, Blind Lemon [Credit: Archive Photos]The rural blues grown in the Carolinas, Georgia and three main areas, Texas, and Mississippi. The blues of Georgia and the Carolinas is noted for its clarity of enunciation and regularity of beat. Impacted by white and ragtime folk music, it’s more melodic than the Mississippi and Texas styles. Blind Willie McTell and Blind Boy Fuller were representative of this style.
The Texas blues is characterized by high, clean singing accompanied by supple guitar lines that consist typically of single -string picked arpeggios rather than strummed chords. Blind Lemon Jefferson was the most powerful Texas bluesman. Mississippi Delta blues is the most extreme of the three styles and has been the most powerful. Vocally, it is the most language-like, and the guitar accompaniment is percussive and rhythmic; a bottleneck or a slide is frequently used. The Mississippi style is signified by Charley Patton, Eddie (“Son”) House, and Robert Johnson, among others.
Acoustic Blues Guitar Teacher 4066 Toowong BC Queensland.
Rainey, Ma [Credit: Archive Photos]The first blues records were made in the 1920s by black women like Mamie Smith, Ma Rainey, Ida Cox, and Bessie Smith. These performers were mostly stage vocalists backed by jazz bands; their style is called classic blues.
As millions of blacks left the South for the cities of the North the World Wars and the Great Depression caused the geographic dispersal of the blues. The blues became adjusted to the more advanced urban surroundings. The electric guitar and the amplified harmonica created a driving sound of great emotional and rhythmic intensity.
Hooker, John Lee [Credit: Frank Driggs Collection/Hulton Archive/Getty Images]Among the cities in which the blues initially took root were Atlanta, Memphis, and St. Louis. John Lee Hooker settled in Detroit, and on the West Coast Aaron (“T-Bone”) Walker developed a style later adopted by Riley (“B.B.”) King.
It was Chicago, however, that played the greatest role in the growth of urban blues.
Many other musical styles have been influenced by the blues. Jazz and blues are closely related; such seminal jazzmen as Jelly Roll Morton and Louis Armstrong employed blues elements within their music. Soul music and rhythm and blues additionally show obvious blues tonalities and shapes. The blues have had their biggest effect on rock music.
Blues content was frequently used by early rock singers like Elvis Presley. British rock musicians in the 1960s, notably the Rolling Stones, Eric Clapton, and John Mayall, were strongly influenced by the blues, as were such American rock musicians as Paul Butterfield, Mike Bloomfield, and the Allman Brothers Band.
Acoustic Blues Guitar Teacher Toowong BC 4066 Queensland