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12 Bar Blues In 12 Keys - Blues Rhythm Guitar Lessons [BL-201]
12 Bar Blues In 12 Keys - Blues Rhythm Guitar Lessons [BL-201]
Published: 2011/10/29
Channel: JustinGuitar
Gary Clark Jr. - 12 Bar Blues-Jam @Jam
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Marty Schwartz 12 Bar Blues Guitar Lesson
Marty Schwartz 12 Bar Blues Guitar Lesson
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Twelve Bar Blues Band ~ The Blues Has Got Me
Twelve Bar Blues Band ~ The Blues Has Got Me
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12 Bar Blues Backing Track In A Major
12 Bar Blues Backing Track In A Major
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Guitar Lesson: How To Play Old School 12 Bar Blues #1 EASY PART 1 Beginners The Chords Key E 145
Guitar Lesson: How To Play Old School 12 Bar Blues #1 EASY PART 1 Beginners The Chords Key E 145
Published: 2013/05/18
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Tommy Emmanuel 12 Bar Blues  6
Tommy Emmanuel 12 Bar Blues 6
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B.B. King Style 12 Bar Blues in A Minor
B.B. King Style 12 Bar Blues in A Minor
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A - Medium Tempo 12 Bar Blues Backing Track
A - Medium Tempo 12 Bar Blues Backing Track
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How to Play 12 Bar Blues for Absolute Super Beginner Guitar Lesson Blues Guitar Lessons
How to Play 12 Bar Blues for Absolute Super Beginner Guitar Lesson Blues Guitar Lessons
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Channel: Marty Music
Twelve Bar Blues Band - Love That Burns
Twelve Bar Blues Band - Love That Burns
Published: 2012/10/28
Channel: SoundofBlues (Alessandra)
Blues Guitar Tutorial for Beginners  - 12 Bar blues in E (Level 7 #6)
Blues Guitar Tutorial for Beginners - 12 Bar blues in E (Level 7 #6)
Published: 2016/03/19
Channel: Andy Guitar
Bb - Medium Tempo 12 Bar Blues Backing Track
Bb - Medium Tempo 12 Bar Blues Backing Track
Published: 2013/07/04
Channel: Cliff Smith
The 12 Bar Blues Form
The 12 Bar Blues Form
Published: 2014/04/05
Channel: shane bordeau
The Basic 12 Bar Blues Riff - Blues Guitar Lesson #4
The Basic 12 Bar Blues Riff - Blues Guitar Lesson #4
Published: 2014/11/18
Channel: GuitarLessons.com
Acoustic 12 bar blues beginner guitar lesson learn to play easy and fun
Acoustic 12 bar blues beginner guitar lesson learn to play easy and fun
Published: 2010/03/07
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E - Slow 12 Bar Blues Backing Track
E - Slow 12 Bar Blues Backing Track
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Robben Ford "12 Bar Blues Improvisation"
Robben Ford "12 Bar Blues Improvisation"
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Channel: Relix
12 Bar Blues On Piano - Blues Piano Lessons
12 Bar Blues On Piano - Blues Piano Lessons
Published: 2009/08/31
Channel: Pianote
"12 Bar Blues" Ukulele Duos - Matt Dahlberg
"12 Bar Blues" Ukulele Duos - Matt Dahlberg
Published: 2016/09/07
Channel: Ukulele Underground
12 Bar Blues in C (Piano Improvisation)
12 Bar Blues in C (Piano Improvisation)
Published: 2010/02/25
Channel: Ian Nash
10 SONGS That You Can Sing To The 12 Bar Blues On Guitar #1 Tutorial EricBlackmonMusicHD
10 SONGS That You Can Sing To The 12 Bar Blues On Guitar #1 Tutorial EricBlackmonMusicHD
Published: 2014/12/20
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Learn 12 Bar Blues for Super Absolute Beginner Guitar Lessons | Blues Guitar Lesson | Guitar Tricks
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Published: 2017/03/28
Channel: Guitar Tricks
Steve Stine Guitar Lesson - Understanding the 12-Bar Blues and the I IV V Chords
Steve Stine Guitar Lesson - Understanding the 12-Bar Blues and the I IV V Chords
Published: 2017/02/27
Channel: Steve Stine
The 12 bar Blues Form
The 12 bar Blues Form
Published: 2014/06/03
Channel: Larry Krauser
C - Medium Tempo 12 Bar Blues Backing Track
C - Medium Tempo 12 Bar Blues Backing Track
Published: 2013/07/04
Channel: Cliff Smith
12 Bar Blues in the Style of Stevie Ray Vaughan Lesson
12 Bar Blues in the Style of Stevie Ray Vaughan Lesson
Published: 2017/01/25
Channel: Rabea Massaad
Mix BLUES Licks With Chords | 12 bar blues + TABS
Mix BLUES Licks With Chords | 12 bar blues + TABS
Published: 2017/05/24
Channel: Paul Davids
How to play 12 Bar Blues for Guitar | Steve Stine | Guitar Zoom
How to play 12 Bar Blues for Guitar | Steve Stine | Guitar Zoom
Published: 2014/09/03
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Joe Bonamassa   Twelve bar blues lesson
Joe Bonamassa Twelve bar blues lesson
Published: 2015/09/17
Channel: richard sfeir
Santana - guitar solo / 12 bar blues jam - 11/26/1989 (Official)
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Easy Blues Guitar Lesson For Beginners - Must Know 12 Bar Blues In E
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Scott Weiland - 12 Bar Blues
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Published: 2015/03/12
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12-Bar Blues Triads Lesson with Andy Aledort
12-Bar Blues Triads Lesson with Andy Aledort
Published: 2016/10/24
Channel: Guitar World
A - Slow 12 Bar Blues Backing Track
A - Slow 12 Bar Blues Backing Track
Published: 2013/07/04
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Slow Acoustic 12 bar Blues backing track in E
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Bass Lessons - Basic 12 Bar Blues For Bass Guitar - Easy Basslines
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Published: 2014/08/28
Channel: youcanlearnguitar
Ab - Medium Tempo 12 Bar Blues Backing Track
Ab - Medium Tempo 12 Bar Blues Backing Track
Published: 2013/07/04
Channel: Cliff Smith
Bb - Slow 12 Bar Blues Backing Track
Bb - Slow 12 Bar Blues Backing Track
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How To Play G Major 1-6 12 Bar Blues Guitar Chord & Solo Lesson EricBlackmonMusicHD YouTube
How To Play G Major 1-6 12 Bar Blues Guitar Chord & Solo Lesson EricBlackmonMusicHD YouTube
Published: 2016/09/04
Channel: EricBlackmonGuitar
Easy Harmonica 12 Bar Blues Lesson with Tabs
Easy Harmonica 12 Bar Blues Lesson with Tabs
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How to play a 12 bar blues
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Published: 2013/04/12
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12 Bar Slow Blues Backing Track in Am
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Published: 2017/05/15
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12 Bar Blues Guitar Lesson
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Published: 2014/02/12
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12 Bar Blues for Beginners Guitar - Eric Clapton Style "Before You Accuse Me"
12 Bar Blues for Beginners Guitar - Eric Clapton Style "Before You Accuse Me"
Published: 2013/11/08
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Eb - Slow 12 Bar Blues Backing Track
Eb - Slow 12 Bar Blues Backing Track
Published: 2013/07/04
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C - Slow 12 Bar Blues Backing Track
C - Slow 12 Bar Blues Backing Track
Published: 2013/07/04
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Easy Tutorial 12 Bar Blues in E Lesson [1/3]
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Blues Backing Track in E - 12 Bar Blues - Chicago Blues Style
Blues Backing Track in E - 12 Bar Blues - Chicago Blues Style
Published: 2014/04/14
Channel: Dannys Guitar Channel
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WIKIPEDIA ARTICLE

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Typical boogie woogie bassline on twelve-bar blues progression in C, chord roots in red. About this sound Play 

The twelve-bar blues or blues changes is one of the most prominent chord progressions in popular music. The blues progression has a distinctive form in lyrics, phrase, chord structure, and duration. In its basic form, it is predominantly based on the I, IV, and V chords of a key.

The blues can be played in any key. Mastery of the blues and rhythm changes are "critical elements for building a jazz repertoire".[1]

Structure[edit]

The most common or standard twelve-bar blues progressions variations, in C. (Benward & Saker (2003), p. 186) About this sound Play A , About this sound B , About this sound C , About this sound D , and About this sound E  as boogie woogie basslines. For example, Robert Johnson's "Sweet Home Chicago" (1936) uses A.

In the key of C, one basic blues progression (E from above) is as follows.[2] (For the most commonly used patterns see the section "Variations", below.)

Different notations
Chord Function Numerical Roman
numeral
Tonic T 1 I
Subdominant S 4 IV
Dominant D 5 V

Chords may be also represented by a few different notation systems such as sheet music and electronic music. A basic example of the progression would look like this, using T to indicate the tonic, S for the subdominant, and D for the dominant, and representing one chord. In Roman numeral analysis the tonic is called the I, the sub-dominant the IV, and the dominant the V. (These three chords are the basis of thousands of pop songs, which thus often have a blues sound even without using the classical twelve-bar form.)

Using said notations, the chord progression outlined above can be represented as follows.[3]

The first line takes four bars, as do the remaining two lines, for a total of twelve bars. However, the vocal or lead phrases, though they often come in threes, do not coincide with the above three lines or sections. This overlap between the grouping of the accompaniment and the vocal is part of what creates interest in the twelve bar blues.

Variations[edit]

"W.C. Handy, 'the Father of the Blues', codified this blues form to help musicians communicate chord changes."[4][clarification needed] Many variations are possible. The length of sections may be varied to create eight-bar blues or sixteen-bar blues.

In the original form, the dominant chord continued through the tenth bar; later on the V–IV–I–I "shuffle blues" pattern became standard in the third set of four bars:[5]

I I I I
IV IV I I
V IV I I
About this sound Play 

The common quick to four or quick-change (quick four[6]) variation uses the subdominant chord in the second bar:

These variations are not mutually exclusive; the rules for generating them may be combined with one another (or with others not listed) to generate more complex variations.

Seventh chords are often used just before a change, and more changes can be added. A more complicated example might look like this, where "7" indicates a seventh chord:

Using a seventh chord
I IV I I7
IV IV7 I I7
V IV I V7

When the last bar contains the dominant, that bar may be called a turnaround; otherwise the last four measures is the blues turnaround.

Basic jazz blues progression
I7 IV7 IVo I7 v7 I7
IV7 IVo I7 III7 VI7
ii7 V7 III7 VI7 II7 V7
About this sound Play 

In jazz, twelve-bar blues progressions are expanded with moving substitutions and chordal variations. The cadence (or last four measures) uniquely leads to the root by perfect intervals of fourths.

Bop V/ii cliché arpeggio, in second measure, upwards from third (C) to ninth (B): A79(Spitzer 2001, 62) the dominant of D minor (ii in C major) About this sound Play .

The Bebop blues:[7]

Bebop blues
I7 IV7 I7 v7 I7
IV7 IVo7 I7 V/ii9
ii7 V7 I7 V/ii9 ii7 V7
About this sound Play 

This progression is similar to Charlie Parker's "Now's the Time", "Billie's Bounce", Sonny Rollins's "Tenor Madness", and many other bop tunes.[8] "It is a bop soloist's cliche to arpeggiate this chord [A79 (V/ii = VI79)] from the 3 up to the 9."[9]

Minor blues (Spitzer 2001, p. 63)
i7 i7 i7 i7
iv7 iv7 i7 i7
VI7 V7 i7 i7
About this sound Play 

There are also minor twelve-bar blues, such as John Coltrane's "Equinox" and "Mr. P.C.",[10] and "Why Don't You Do Right?", made famous by Lil Green with Big Bill Broonzy and then Peggy Lee with the Benny Goodman Orchestra.[citation needed] The chord on the fifth scale degree may be major (V7) or minor (v7), in which case it fits a dorian scale along with the minor i7 and iv7 chords, creating a modal feeling.[11] Major and minor can also be mixed together, a signature characteristic of the music of Charles Brown.[citation needed]

While the blues is most often considered to be in sectional strophic form with a verse-chorus pattern, it may also be considered as an extension of the variational chaconne procedure. Van der Merwe (1989) considers it developed in part specifically from the American Gregory Walker, though the conventional account would consider hymns to have provided the repeating chord progression or harmonic formulae of the blues.[12]

Lyrical patterns[edit]

The lyrics of most blues songs consist of verses of three lines, of which the first two are the same or vary slightly in wording, often with an interjection in the second line:

I hate to see the evening sun go down,

Yes, I hate to see that evening sun go down
'Cause it makes me think I'm on my last go 'round

However, many songs using the blues chord progression have lyrics that are not in the three-line form. For instance, "I'm Moving On" has a verse in the first four bars and a chorus in the final eight bars:

That big eight-wheeler rollin' down the track

Means your true lovin' daddy ain't comin' back.

I'm movin' on, I'll soon be gone
You were flyin' too high for my little old sky
So I'm movin' on.

Here is an example showing the twelve-bar blues pattern and how it fits with the lyrics of a given verse. One chord symbol is used per beat, with "-" representing the continuation of the previous chord:

I        -     -      -      IV     -   -    -             I - - - I7 - - -
Woke up this morning with an awful aching head

IV        -     -      -     IV7    -   -    -             I - - - I7 - - -
Woke up this morning with an awful aching head

V     -        -     V7      IV    -    -     IV7          I - - - I - V V7
My new man had left me,      just a room and an empty bed.
— Bessie Smith, "Empty Bed Blues"

Another example, "Johnny B. Goode" (written and first recorded by Chuck Berry), applies a "shuffle" or "light 'swing'" rhythm to one of the more common twelve-bar progressions:

Line Pickup Measure 1 Measure 2 Measure 3 Measure 4
1 Deep B (I) down in Lou'siana, close to B (I) New Orleans, way B (I) back up in the woods among the B (I) evergreens,
2 There E (IV) stood a log cabin, made from E (IV) earth and wood, where B (I) lived a country boy named B (I) Johnny B. Goode.
3 He F (V) never really learned to read or F7 (V7) write too well, but he could B (I) play a guitar just like a- B (I) -ringin' a bell.

Examples of songs[edit]

The twelve-bar blues chord progression is the basis of thousands of songs. Most songs by blues genre-related artists, including boogie-woogie, jump blues, and various regional blues styles use the twelve bar format (more than half of the songs on the List of blues standards were originally or have been standardized to a twelve-bar I–IV–V format[13]

Many early rhythm and blues and rock and roll songs also use the progression.[14] Also, songs not normally associated with blues often use a twelve-bar blues format. Examples of these include:

References[edit]

  1. ^ Thomas 2002, p. 85.
  2. ^ Benward & Saker 2003, p. 186.
  3. ^ Kernfeld 2007
  4. ^ Alfred Publishing, p. 18
  5. ^ Tanner and Gerow 1984, p. 37, cited in Baker 2004: "This alteration [V–IV–I rather than V–V–I] is now considered standard."
  6. ^ Alfred 2003, p. 34
  7. ^ Spitzer 2001, p. 62
  8. ^ Spitzer 2001, p. 62.
  9. ^ Spitzer 2001, p. 62.
  10. ^ Spitzer 2001, p. 63.
  11. ^ Spitzer 2001, p. 63.
  12. ^ Middleton 1990, pp. 117–118.
  13. ^ The rest are mostly variations on eight-bar blues, sixteen-bar blues, or modal (no chord progression)
  14. ^ Doll 2009, p. 22.
  15. ^ Covach 2005, p. 67.

Sources[edit]

  • Alfred Publishing (2002). Beginning Delta Blues Guitar. ISBN 978-0-7390-3006-6.
  • Alfred Publishing (2003). Electric Bass for Guitarists. ISBN 0-7390-3335-2.
  • Anonymous (8-14-08). "Blues Chord Progressions and Variations: Common variations in the twelve bar form", How to Play Blues Guitar.com.
  • Axelsson, Lars; Strängliden, Eddie, eds. (2007). "Johnny B. Goode". 100 Lätta Låtar: Gitarr [100 Easy Songs: Guitar]. 100 Lätta Låtar. 1. Erhrlingförlagen AB. Arc Music Corp. ISBN 978-91-85662-11-1. 
  • Benward, Bruce, and Marilyn Nadine Saker (2003). Music: In Theory and Practice, Vol. I, seventh edition. Boston: McGraw-Hill. ISBN 978-0-07-294262-0.
  • Covach, John. "Form in Rock Music: A Primer", in Stein, Deborah (2005). Engaging Music: Essays in Music Analysis. New York: Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-517010-5.
  • Doll, Christopher (2009). "Transformation in Rock Harmony: An Explanatory Strategy". Gamut (2): 1–44. 
  • Gerow, Maurice and Tanner, Paul (1984). A Study of Jazz, Dubuque, Iowa: William C. Brown Publishers, p. 37, cited in Baker, Robert M. (2005). A Brief History of the Blues".
  • Kernfeld, Barry, ed. (2007). "Blues progression". The New Grove Dictionary of Jazz;. 2nd Edition. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press. 
  • Middleton, Richard (1990/2002). Studying Popular Music. Philadelphia: Open University Press. ISBN 0-335-15275-9.
  • Shipton, Alyn (2007). A New History of Jazz, 2nd. ed., Continuum, pp. 4–5.
  • Spitzer, Peter (2001). Jazz Theory Handbook. ISBN 978-0-7866-5328-7.
  • Thomas, John (2002). Voice Leading for Guitar: Moving Through the Changes. ISBN 0-634-01655-5.
  • van der Merwe, Peter (1989). Origins of the Popular Style. Oxford: Clarendon Press. ISBN 0-19-316121-4. Cited in Middleton (1990).

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