Improvising blues in A-minor over a backing track

Lesson #217 • Feb 20, 2019

Video lesson:

Instructional PDF 1 page

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Follow along with the print-friendly PDF!

It includes all of my notes for this lesson, allowing you to follow along at your own pace. You're free to download, print, and share the PDF across your devices.

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Editor’s notes

I recently learned St James Infirmary Blues (check out my lesson for it!) – and as part of learning a few licks & fills for that song, I found myself wanting to continue exploring beginner blues lead guitar. So, I went ahead and made a backing track to practice over. In this resulting entry in my practice log, I’ll demonstrate some of my exploration of the minor blues scale (played over the backing track). I’ll show you the scale chart I’m using, as well as talk through some of my thinking in getting started with unfamiliar scales.

Remember, you can access the scale chart web tool I built (aka. FretMonster!) at playsongnotes.com/fretmonster

Video timestamps

  • 0:00 Playthrough & agenda
  • 2:38 I explain how to read scale charts

  • 5:04 I start improvising w/ the backing track

Backing track

My lesson for St James Infirmary Blues

Video timestamps:

  • 0:00 Playthrough & greeting
  • 2:05 Chords shapes needed
  • 6:20 Chord progression
  • 6:55 Strumming patterns
  • 9:39 Adv. strumming tips
  • 13:40 Fills & licks
  • 21:02 Farewell

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Hey there! My name is David Potsiadlo, and I'm the creator of the 400+ weekly lessons here at Song Notes, going back to 2013. Here’s my guitar story »

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