Acoustic Blues Guitar Teacher 4417 Warkon Queensland
From its origin in the South, the blues’ simple but expressive forms had become by the 1960s one of the most important influences on the development of music that is popular throughout America.
Although instrumental accompaniment is nearly universal in the blues, the blues is basically a a form that is vocal. Blues songs are lyrical rather than narrative; feelings are being expressed by blues vocalists as opposed to telling stories. The emotion expressed is normally one of depression or melancholy, often due to problems in love.
To express this musically, blues performers use vocal techniques such as melisma (keeping up an individual syllable across several pitches), rhythmic techniques such as syncopation, and instrumental techniques such as “choking” or bending guitar strings on the neck or employing a metal slide or bottleneck to the guitar strings to create a whining, voice-like sound.
Typically the first two and a half measures of each line are committed to the last measure, singing and a half consisting of an instrumental “break” that complements the vocal line, replies, or repeats.
Acoustic Blues Guitar Teacher 4417 Warkon Queensland.
African influences are evident in the blues tonality, the call-and-response pattern of the falsetto break in the vocal style, the repeated refrain structure of the blues stanza, and the imitation of vocal idioms by instruments, particularly the guitar and harmonica.
The sources of the blues are badly recorded. It was determined by work songs and field hollers, minstrel show music, ragtime, church music, and the folk and popular music of the white inhabitants. Southern black men, most of whom came from the milieu of agricultural workers derived from and mainly 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 released. It became quite popular, and afterward many other Tin Pan Alley songs entitled blues started to appear.
Jefferson, Blind Lemon [Credit: Archive Pictures]The rural blues grown in Texas, Georgia and the Carolinas, three principal regions, and Mississippi. The blues of the Carolinas and Georgia is noted for its clarity of enunciation and regularity of beat. Influenced by white and ragtime folk music, it is more melodic than the Mississippi and Texas styles.
High, clean singing followed by supple guitar lines that consist usually of single characterizes the Texas blues -string picked arpeggios rather than strummed chords. Blind Lemon Jefferson was by far the most powerful Texas bluesman. Mississippi Delta blues is the most extreme of the three styles and has been the most influential. Vocally, it truly is the most language-like, and the guitar accompaniment is rhythmic and percussive; a bottleneck or a slide is often used. The Mississippi style is signified by Charley Patton, Eddie (“Son”) House, and Robert Johnson, among others.
Acoustic Blues Guitar Teacher Warkon 4417 Queensland.
Rainey, Ma [Credit: Archive Photographs]The first blues records were made in the 1920s by black women such as Bessie Smith, Ma Rainey, Ida Cox, and Mamie Smith. These performers were chiefly stage vocalists backed by jazz bands; their style is referred to as classic blues.
As millions of blacks left the South for the cities of the North the Great Depression and the World Wars caused the geographical dispersal of the blues. The blues became adjusted to the more complex urban environment. The electric guitar and the harmonica that was amplified created a driving sound of great rhythmic and emotional intensity.
Hooker, John Lee [Credit: 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, nonetheless, that played the greatest part in the development of urban blues. In the 1920s and ’30s Memphis Minnie, Tampa Red, Big Bill Broonzy, and John Lee (“Sonny Boy”) Williamson were popular Chicago performers. After World War II they were supplanted by a new generation of bluesmen that contained Muddy Waters, Chester Arthur Burnett (Howlin’ Wolf), Elmore James, Little Walter Jacobs, Buddy Guy, and Koko Taylor.
The blues have influenced many other musical styles. Jazz and blues are closely connected; such seminal jazzmen as Jelly Roll Morton and Louis Armstrong employed blues elements within their music. Rhythm and soul music and blues also show apparent blues tonalities and forms. The blues have had their largest effect on rock music.
Early rock singers for example Elvis Presley regularly used blues material. British rock musicians in the 1960s, notably the Rolling Stones, Eric Clapton, and John Mayall, were strongly affected by the blues, as were such American rock musicians as Mike Bloomfield, Paul Butterfield, and the Allman Brothers Band.
Acoustic Blues Guitar Teacher Warkon 4417 Queensland