Acoustic Blues Guitar Teacher Wonbah 4671 Queensland
From its origin in the South, the blues’ simple but expressive forms had become by the 1960s among the most important influences on the development of music that is popular throughout the USA.
Although instrumental accompaniment is nearly universal in the blues, the blues is essentially a vocal type. Blues songs are lyrical rather than narrative; feelings are being expressed by blues vocalists instead of telling stories. The emotion expressed is generally one of melancholy or depression, commonly due to difficulties in love.
As a musical style, the blues is defined by expressive “microtonal” pitch inflections (blue notes), a three-line textual stanza of the form AAB, and a 12-measure form. Commonly 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 repeats, replies, or complements the vocal line. In terms of functional (i.e., traditional 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 Queensland 4671 Wonbah.
African influences are obvious 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 affected by work songs and field hollers, minstrel show music, ragtime, church music, and the folk and popular music of the white citizenry. Blues derived from and was mostly played by Southern black men, most of whom came from the milieu of agricultural workers.
The first references to blues date s back to the 1890s and early 1900. In 1912 black bandleader W.C. Handy’s composition “Memphis Blues” was released. It became quite popular, and then many other Tin Pan Alley tunes entitled blues started to appear.
Jefferson, Blind Lemon [Credit: Archive Photos]The rural blues developed in the Carolinas, Georgia and three principal areas, Texas, and Mississippi. The blues of the Carolinas and Georgia is noted for its clarity of enunciation and regularity of rhythm. Determined by ragtime and white folk music, it’s more melodic than the Mississippi and Texas styles. Blind Willie McTell and Blind Boy Fuller were representative of this style.
High, clear 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 the most powerful Texas bluesman. Mississippi Delta blues is the most intense of the three styles and has been the most influential. Vocally, it’s the most speech-like, and the guitar accompaniment is percussive and rhythmic; a slide or bottleneck is often used. The Mississippi style is represented by Charley Patton, Eddie (“Son”) House, and Robert Johnson, among others.
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Rainey, Ma [Credit: Archive Photographs]The first blues recordings were made in the 1920s by black women including Mamie Smith, Ma Rainey, Ida Cox, and Bessie Smith. These performers were primarily stage singers backed by jazz bands; their style is called classic blues.
As millions of blacks left the South for the cities of the North the Great Depression and the World Wars caused the geographic dispersal of the blues. The blues became adapted to the more complex urban surroundings. Lyrics took up urban themes, as the solo bluesman was joined by a pianist or harmonica player and then by a rhythm section consisting of drums and bass and the blues ensemble developed. The harmonica that was amplified and the electric guitar 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, nevertheless, that played the greatest part in the growth 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 brand 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 influenced many other musical styles. Blues and jazz are closely related; blues elements were employed by such seminal jazzmen as Jelly Roll Morton and Louis Armstrong in their music. Rhythm and soul music and blues additionally reveal obvious blues tonalities and forms. The blues have had their largest influence on rock music.
Rock singers such as Elvis Presley often used blues content. 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 Paul Butterfield, Mike Bloomfield, and the Allman Brothers Band.
Acoustic Blues Guitar Teacher Wonbah 4671 Queensland