Acoustic Blues Guitar Teacher Queensland 4701 The Common
From its source in the South, the blues’ simple but expressive forms had become by the 1960s one of the most important influences on the growth of popular music throughout the United States.
Although instrumental accompaniment is nearly worldwide in the blues, the blues is basically a vocal kind. Blues songs are lyrical rather than narrative; feelings are being expressed by blues vocalists as opposed to telling stories. The emotion expressed is generally one of sadness or melancholy, often due to difficulties in love.
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 type. Commonly the first two and a half measures of each line are given to the last measure, singing and a half composed of an instrumental “break” that repeats, responses, or complements the vocal line. In terms of practical (i.e., conventional European) harmony, the most straightforward blues harmonic progression is described as follows (I, IV, and V refer respectively to the first or tonic, fourth or subdominant, and fifth or dominant notes of the scale):
Acoustic Blues Guitar Teacher 4701 The Common Queensland.
African influences are apparent in the blues tonality, the call-and-response pattern of the imitation of vocal idioms by instruments, the falsetto break in the vocal style, and the repeated refrain arrangement of the blues stanza, especially the guitar and harmonica.
The origins of the blues are poorly documented. It was affected by work songs and field hollers, minstrel show music, ragtime, church music, and the folk and popular music of the white people. 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 very popular, and thereafter many other Tin Pan Alley songs entitled blues began to appear.
Jefferson, Blind Lemon [Credit: Archive Photos]The rural blues grown in Mississippi, Georgia and the Carolinas, Texas, and three principal areas. 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.
The Texas blues is defined by high, clean singing followed by supple guitar lines that consist generally of single -string picked arpeggios rather than strummed chords. Blind Lemon Jefferson was by far the most powerful Texas bluesman. Mississippi Delta blues has been the most influential and is the most intense of the three styles. Vocally, it is the most language-like, and the guitar accompaniment is percussive and rhythmic; a slide or bottleneck is regularly used. The Mississippi style is symbolized by Charley Patton, Eddie (“Son”) House, and Robert Johnson, among others.
Acoustic Blues Guitar Teacher The Common 4701 Queensland.
Rainey, Ma [Credit: Archive Photographs]The first blues records were made in the 1920s by black women like Bessie Smith, Ma Rainey, Ida Cox, and Mamie Smith. These performers were chiefly stage vocalists backed by jazz bands; their style is known as classic blues.
The Great Depression and the World Wars caused the geographical dispersal of the blues as millions of blacks left the South for the cities of the North. The blues became adjusted to the more advanced urban surroundings. The electric guitar and the harmonica that was amplified created a driving sound of great rhythmic and emotional intensity.
Hooker, John Lee [Credit: Frank Driggs Collection/Hulton Archive/Getty Images]Among the cities where the blues initially took root were Atlanta, Memphis, and St. Louis.
It was Chicago, however, that played the greatest part in the development of urban blues. After World War II they were supplanted by a new generation of bluesmen that included Muddy Waters, Chester Arthur Burnett (Howlin’ Wolf), Elmore James, Little Walter Jacobs, Buddy Guy, and Koko Taylor.
The blues have affected many other musical styles. Jazz and blues are closely related; such seminal jazzmen as Jelly Roll Morton and Louis Armstrong employed blues elements within their music. Rhythm and soul music and blues also reveal shapes and clear blues tonalities. The blues have had their biggest effect on rock music.
Blues content was often used by early rock singers such as Elvis Presley. British rock musicians in the 1960s, notably the Rolling Stones, Eric Clapton, and John Mayall, were powerfully affected by the blues, as were such American rock musicians as Mike Bloomfield, Paul Butterfield, and the Allman Brothers Band.
Acoustic Blues Guitar Teacher The Common 4701 Queensland