The Blues Guitarist
Learn Blues Guitar
The CD is essential – it’s one thing to understand a concept, get fingering, etc. It’s another entirely to hear a riff or a tune, and you’ll find that you have to work beyond the mechanics to duplicate the sound you hear.
Speaking of real music, someone obviously had a sense of humor in putting this one together. Poking fun at the kind of tunes usually included in instructional books, they included “Mary Had a Little Lamb”. But in this case, it’s Stevie Ray Vaughan’s version!
The only thing I would pick over is that it would have been helpful for the publisher to have included a player tool with the CD rather than leave things to whatever default player you have set up on your computer. I have other instructional CDs that include tools, for example, that let you slow down or speed up the track you’re playing, which really helps when learning something new.
Be aware that this book is available in two physical sizes. I bought the small format book before I was aware that the larger version exists, and at the same price.
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Good bits for me, were things like: a really good, simplified version of the SRV classic Mary Had a Little Lamb (blues style) and You Shook Me — challenging, doable & they feel and sound good. Some other later songs seem either over simplified (e.g Look at Little Sister and I’m Tore Down) & dull or overly difficult (e.g. Stormy Monday blues). The Harmonized Shuffle Patterns was something new & interesting.
Overall a 3 or 4 out of 5. Its low cost and simplicity help offset some of its short comings. While certainly not a comprehensive or lush book on the blues it is not intimidating and is one to help you on the way. I prefer some other similar books in this genre but none is perfect and this one is probably worth working through.
Bottom line: A good little book, and worth the price.
If this set had been issued by somebody new to the music scene, then all the usual pundits would be lauding him. For Chris Rea, it is his farewell and a very poignant farewell it is. If he had never issued anything else, then this would stand as a brilliant body of work. Taken together with all the albums issued over the last 25 years, then it is outstanding.
If you have never really listened to Chris Rea, then this is an opportunity to discern why he has had a faithful following over the years and why we have all looked forward eagerly to each new release.
Thanks for the music Chris – we will not forget the pleasure you have given us and look forward to any releases with your new band Fireflies.
Chris Rea obviously had that idiot idea, and he had some thoughts about the blues too. A fatal and selfoverating combination, I would expect. Chris Rea has made some albums in the past that were a bit boring. But the high level of his music on The Blue Jukebox, made me think that this man was doing something right. Could this album be any good?
I knew Rea is a pretty good guitar player, who plays a mean slide. I already liked his voice. I liked the good popmusic on for instance Shamrock Diaries. But is anybody capable of filling that many cd’s with blues, with his own personal style and voice without falling into an irritating form of narcism?
I also had my doubts about the originality of an album with all these different styles of blues, done so many times before.
For the reasons that no one in pophistory had pulled this off before, my strong believe in the power of the blues and pure fascination for someone’s intension to do such an outrageous project, I decided to buy the box.
And, by the allmighty Thor, towering high above us, this music is allright. This band is tight. This man can play.Each album has a period or region in the blues as a starting point. What Rea does not do is take the blues in a riged way, but he does things with it. Sometimes he very much sticks to the original blues of that period, but you can also hear a popblues-variation very similar to older music of Chris Rea. Always played with the instruments of the period or region of the cd.
The music sounds pretty relaxed, but is also very tight. Altough most of the work may have been done by Rea himself, the reason why the album sounds good has everything to do with the band. Essence of the blues naturally is the rhythm. A lot of blues done by popmusicians don’t really sound like blues, tough the right chords etc. are used. But a real bluesband always has something more to offer. His band is a real bluesband and Chris Rea has become what every older musician should become: a bluesman. He proves it with 11 cd’s full of blues! This kind of arrogance has to be rewarded.
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