Fingerstyle Blues Guitar: Master Acoustic Blues Guitar Fingerpicking and Soloing

PDF Fingerstyle Blues Guitar: Master Acoustic Blues Guitar Fingerpicking and Soloing Format Kindle

Lesson Books
  1. Joseph Alexander

Master Acoustic Fingerstyle Blues Guitar
Break down this challenging yet rewarding genre step-by-step, from your first finger independence exercises right through to complete studies that seamlessly combine chords, bass lines and melodies into full pieces of music.

199 Audio Examples in Standard Notation and Tablature
Each element and technique of the early Delta blues style is tackled step by step and demonstrated with over 190 detailed notated examples that you can download for free from

Develop the Finger Independence to Blend Alternating Bass Lines, Chord and Melodies
Fingerstyle blues is a deceptively demanding genre. The engine that drives the music is the 1/4 note alternating or static bass line played with the thumb. This technique is mastered first before melody and then chords are introduced on top. Every technical exercise is introduced via a musical example or phrase that will naturally become part of your playing.

Musical Techniques
Fingerstyle Blues Guitar builds technique and independence through musical phrases and licks, so you will learn to develop the essential syncopation, legato, slides, slurs and vibrato required to play great blues naturally, and make them an unconscious part of your playing. The idea throughout is to build creative freedom so that you can always play what you hear. Of course, there are complete musical studies for you to learn, however, the focus is on building a technical understanding of the style allowing you to create and improvise your own ideas, just like the Delta masters.

The technique you develop through musical vocabulary in Part One of the book is then applied to the essential chords and approaches of the Delta style. You will learn finger-picking patterns, alternate bass lines, chord progressions and turnarounds, and understand how to blend these features together with improvised melodies to build authentic, unaccompanied blues guitar song.

Fingerstyle Blues Guitar Covers:
  • Alternating, static and walking bass lines​
  • Bends, Slides, Legato, Vibrato techniques​
  • Improvising Solos and building Syncopation​
  • Combining melodies with chords and bass lines​
  • Chord inversions, fragments and playing up the neck​
  • Turnarounds, licks and tricks​
  • Complete Musical Studies​
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Buy it Now and Master Fingerstyle Blues Guitar
Kindle is great, but we do recommend learning music from the paperback version of any guitar book, science says our brains retain more information that way. And you probably spend too long staring at a screen anyway, right?

Have fun mastering this intricate genre and accompanying yourself when playing the blues.


The blues is at the root of all modern rock, pop and jazz music and became popular on the guitar around the turn of the 20th century. Some notable artists who popularised early blues guitar were “Mississippi” Fred McDowell, Lead Belly, Blind Lemon Jefferson, Blind Blake and Charlie Patton. These players were among the first to record and preserve the musical tradition of early acoustic blues.

While the music of these players varied, there were certain things that linked their styles and approaches. The first and most obvious factor was that they intricately wove chords, bass lines, and single line soloing into one cohesive piece of music. Fingerstyle blues can often sound like two, or even three guitars are playing at the same time. On top of this complex instrumental texture, the vocals of these blues musicians made powerful use of microtones and blue notes to squeeze every ounce of emotion out of the melodies and lyrical content that was deeply rooted in everyday life, loss, and slavery. By the 1920s when recordings of these artists began to find popularity it was still debatable whether freedom was an actual reality after the emancipation in 1863.

As modern solo guitarists, learning to play acoustic blues guitar in this early style has some great benefits. Not least is the ability to accompany ourselves when there is no band or backing track to help us. As a young electric guitarist and terrible singer, I was always stuck for something to play when people asked me to demonstrate my so-called ‘talents’. Strumming the chords to Oasis songs will only get you so far if you can’t sing the melody, and I always needed a backing track and PA to demonstrate the rock guitar soloing on which I worked incessantly.

Over time, I gravitated towards acoustic blues and jazz chord melody because it meant I could simply pick up a guitar and play chords, bass and lead all at the same time. No singing required! It was like being my own band and backing track

Emulating the early acoustic blues style can be challenging because modern guitarists can be over-reliant on the pick (plectrum) when playing the guitar. The heart of the acoustic blues is independence between the thumb (or pick) and the fingers, and the development of this technique is the core of this book.

Fingerstyle Blues Guitar is split into two halves that guide you through the rudimental techniques, concepts and exercises and will turn you into an excellent acoustic blues guitarist.

Part One focuses on building your acoustic blues soloing and combining it with a steady bass line. It may seem counterintuitive to begin here rather than with chord progressions, but the technique required to mix bass lines and melodies often takes a lot of concentration and practice. The work done in this section will help you to quickly build the more complicated chord techniques in part two.

In Part One, we start from absolute basics and master the rudiments of acoustic blues: coordination, rhythm, scales, technique, articulation, and of course, maintain a constant bass line. Each aspect of playing is introduced logically and musically. The first few exercises may seem basic and boring, but these foundations quickly build into something solid and musical. Even if it seems a little obvious, every exercise is carefully designed to develop control and independence in your playing.

After working through Part One, you will be competent and musical when combining bass lines and blues guitar licks.

Part Two of this book delves deep into the other side of fingerstyle blues guitar; chords. In this section, you will learn how to play essential progressions, turnarounds, chord voicings and picking patterns while all the time combining these techniques with alternating and walking bass lines.

By combining the ideas in both parts of Fingerstyle Blues Guitar, you will quickly become adept at improvising, playing, and writing authenticsounding acoustic blues. Learning to play this style of music was once a big challenge for me because the technique and approach was completely different from anything I’d played before. Even having an early start in classical guitar didn’t help because the movement of the thumb in fingerstyle blues is very different from the classical approach. The solution I found was to proceed extremely slowly and train my fingers to play what I wanted, and only what I wanted. It’s easy to lose focus and allow the fingers to start dictating the music. At first you must work slowly and be incredibly deliberate about every single note. This is the only real way to develop the necessary independence in your fingers.

That said, if you persevere you will quickly find acoustic blues an incredibly fun, rewarding and impressive way to be expressive on the guitar. This style of playing will really set you apart from other guitarists and help you develop a unique approach to music that will give you a lifetime of pleasure.

Enjoy the journey and have fun.​
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