Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Turning many songs into Blues

I do enjoy playing guitar.  I'm not a professional, far from that but I'm good enough to play around a camp fire with friends and have a good time.

Once you master the art of making chords with your left hand while you right hand is picking on the strings, you are good to learn the songs you like.

Chords are easy to learn.  The main issue is learning them to your left hand.  That's the hard part.  When I started playing guitar, 25 years ago, there was no internet to show me how to handle them properly.  I had to buy books and learn with 20-30 songs I had in them.  It was quite limiting...

Chords are available everywhere on the web these days.  It's so easy to find them and learn just about anything.  More than that, you can scale down or scale up the songs to match your voice or find an easier chords set the the original.

I often scale the song in E as I do enjoy playing blues with my guitar.  If you did not know, blues songs are often played with these chords: E, A and B7.   So any songs can be scaled to the blues chords, giving them a new sound and a new rift.  It won't work will all songs but a lot of them.


For fun, I was trying out Born This Way by Lady Gaga.  By scaling the chords to E flat, I ended up with E,D,A and E.  If basically just that.  Play, repeat.

I changed the D for a B7, thus having now a fine blues rift.  From there, it was just a matter of transposing the original lyrics tune to a blues style.  Just go ahead and try it out.

Oh yes, have a look a my cover on YouTube.  You will see what I mean.