Blues music, an American tradition, is considered the basis for most styles of popular music today. Because of this, it is any bassist’s duty to have the knowhow to play in a range of blues styles.

In his course, Essentials: Blues Bass, Stu Hamm breaks down 10 of the most common blues styles, and how to lay the bass down in each.

Here are six video blues bass guitar lessons from the course. For the full course, check out Stu Hamm’s Essentials: Blues Bass on TrueFire!

Blues Bass Guitar Lesson – Slow Walking Blues: Overview


Download the tab & notation for this blues bass guitar lesson

If you REALLY have the blues, you might want to express that mood by playing a very slow blues. So, here we have an example that might remind you of Led Zeppelin’s “Dazed and Confused”.

Blues Bass Guitar Lesson – Slow Walking Blues: Performance


Download the tab & notation for this blues bass guitar lesson

Playing at a tempo this slow is deceptively difficult, and it’s easy to speed up. So, really listen to the backing track and make sure that your bass is not too loud to overpower the tracks so that you can hear when you are speeding up or slowing down.

Blues Bass Guitar Lesson – Slow Walking Blues: Breakdown


Download the tab & notation for this blues bass guitar lesson

This bassline requires more shifting of hand positions than what we have previously worked on. I would recommend that you learn each bassline in the different positions before you work on combining them and shifting your hand between positions.

Blues Bass Guitar Lesson – Jumpin’ Jive: Overview


Download the tab & notation for this blues bass guitar lesson

The band The Stray Cats and guitarist Brian Setzer helped popularize a more swinging/rockabilly style of music still firmly rooted in the blues, and it’s a style that you should be familiar with – so get out your saddle shoes!

Blues Bass Guitar Lesson – Jumpin’ Jive: Performance


Download the tab & notation for this blues bass guitar lesson

This song is FAST! So, take your time to work out the fingerings and turnarounds before you try to play it up to speed with the backing tracks.

Blues Bass Guitar Lesson – Jumpin’ Jive: Breakdown


Download the tab & notation for this blues bass guitar lesson

Here we’re playing on the key of Bb. It seems as if most blues songs written for guitar driven rock bands are in major keys to accommodate the open strings on a guitar (E, A, D, G). Blues songs that are more rooted in the jazz tradition are often in flat keys, so here we are in Bb. Be careful of the shifting hand positions and take your time!

Digging these free video blues bass guitar lessons? Check out Stu Hamm’s Essentials: Blues Bass.

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