I am scheduled to teach the blues mandolin track at Mandolin Camp North April 13-18th, 2018 in Charlton, Massachusetts. Due to family and school commitments, I was not able to host my Richter Mandolin Camp for the Rest of Us, so looking forward to visiting New England next year to talk and teach mandolin.
I’m looking to teach classes on blues mandolin history, music theory for blues musicians, shuffle rhythm workshop, arranging blues/classic rock guitar for mandolin, blues improving, and many more fun topics.
One of the requisite tunes that one learns as a young guitarist. This arrangement, though simple, is a challenge due to the double stop that is maintained on the high A and E strings while the walking bass is done on the low G. This is to keep the tonality of Neil’s acoustic guitar arrangement.
Here’s the first part of a series of 70s guitar anthem rock tunes I’ll soon put up. Everyone knows this tune by Free from the album Fire and Water. No more formidable duo than Kossoff and Rodgers. Clean stripped down blues based British classic rock that was the blueprint for everyone from Lynyrd Skynyrd (who owed a lot to Free) to AC/DC.
Besides transcription of the tune for mandolin, I’ve also included another lesson on my process for moving a guitar classic to the mandolin.
Both of these are available on the tabs page. Remember, $5 per year gets you full access to my tablature!
I’m sorry about how long I’ve been away. Between a job promotion and helping a 17 year old go through the college application and scholarship process, I haven’t touched a mandolin much.
Here’s another installment in my blues series: Freddie King’s “Heads Up” I love this tune and it’s a jam favorite out in these parts. I love King’s guitar playing and writing and have spent many hours learning King licks and studying his phrasing. This is the head to the tune–afterwards, jam away using major pentatonic with some nice blue notes.
The Heads Up tablature is on the tablature page. Remember, a yearly subscription to the tablature page is only $5 per year!
It’s been awhile since I’ve focused on blues, so I will spotlight great riffs or tunes over the next few months. The first is SRV’s “Pride & Joy,” the quintessential Austin Tejas big balls roadhouse blues tune. This is the introduction to the first verse. YouTube video to follow shortly.
It is available on my Tablature page. This month celebrates the one year anniversary of my subscription tablature page (the low low price of $5 for 12 months access). To find out more information as to how to get the Pride & Joy tab, as well as existing and upcoming tabs, you can check out more here.
Coming in the next few months:
Freddie King “Hideaway” & “Heads Up”
John Lee Hooker “Dimples” riff
Magic Sam “I Just Need A Little Bit”
Howlin’ Wolf “Smokestack Lightnin'” & “Killing Floor”
Jethro Tull is one of my all time favorite rock bands. Ian Anderson and Martin Barre have been very influential in how I conceive of the confluence of light and dark (acoustic & electric; flute & guitar; etc.) in a rock setting. Most directly, Ian’s acoustic guitar playing heavily influenced how I play acoustic guitar and octave mandolin. There’s a uniqueness to his strumming style that has become a core of how I approach acoustic.
In many ways, I think Tull were much more successful than Led Zeppelin in incorporating acoustic tones into rock music (Zeppelin’s IIIrd album has received much credit for bridging the acoustic and rock worlds, but Tull–and Fairport Convention before them–were the true pioneers in doing this). It’s unfortunate that Ian dismantled Tull 3 or 4 years ago (though he continues to tour as “Jethro Tull’s Ian Anderson”). I saw Ian last summer when he toured for the Thick as a Brick 40th anniversary tour. Ian’s voice was the best I had heard it in many years, but it was very disappointing to not have Martin Barre there. Unfortunately, I came to Tull in the late 80s after Ian’s voice had already peetered out, so never had an opportunity to see Ian live in the fine form you would have found him in the 70s.
An arrangement of the head of Jethro Tull’s Aqualung has been posted to the Tablature page. This is the 1st section of the tune up to the acoustic guitar. The acoustic guitar section and solo will be posted at another time soon to come.
Per request of tablature subscriber Barry Hines, I’ve arranged Bon Jovi’s Wanted Dead or Alive for mandolin. It’s a great choice for mandolin. This is not an arrangement of the full song, but all the parts are there. Love Sambora’s playing on it and the solo, though not a note for note transcription, pays homage to the style of the original. The opening riff of the tune was made for mandolin, as it uses doubles stops (based around Dm/F) and crosspicking to full effect.
Tablature available on Tab page. Remember, you need to be a tablature subscriber to reach that content.