Lesson 4
12 Bar Blues Progression

Wanna go "Rock n' Roll"? - 12 bar blues progression is a way to begin...

I'm not going to dip into much theory here, just listen to audio,
follow the tabs, and play along the backing track right after the first tab ;)

Here's one easy to play 12 bar blues riff:

An easy to play 12 bar blues riff - guitar tablature

Backing track

Ignore first 2 bars on the track, they are intro, and begin to play right after them, when the bass track begins.

Download a backing track of the 12 bar blues progression.

Pay attention that the riff has the shuffle rhythm. It means that instead of playing each chord flatly one after another with eighth notes (2 chords per metronome's click), now you use eighth-note triplets:
(It would be 3 chords per metronome's click), but you should skip each 2nd chord in a triplet.

Sorry for pour explanation, It's kind of hard to explain shuffle rhythm, though it's quite intuitive to feel and with little practice play it:



Another version of the 12 bar blues riff:

An alternative version of the 12 bar blues riff - guitar tablature

Note that in this variant of the riff each chord begins at the end of the previous bar and continue to sound at the beginning of the current one
(the chords are connected with the curved lines on the tab).

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This article was last updated on January 18, 2024