A pianist with the Blues in their heart, like many of the masterful players mentioned, can conjure emotions as deep as anything by Bach or Chopin. 12 Bar Blues vs 8 Bar Blues. In New Orleans the blues is most often played in the 8 bar form. A blues scale consists of 6 different notes, namely the root, flat 3rd, 4th, flat 5th, 5th and flat 7th of the major scale: 1 – b3 – 4 – b5 – 5 – b7.For instance, in the C blues scale the notes are C … The ‘wide-open city’ of St. Louis was particularly well known for Blues piano players like Roosevelt Sykes, Peetie Wheatstraw, Walter Davies, Speckled Red and, of course ‘St. The 12 bar blues is most commonly associated with the Chicago Blues. The piano has been at the heart of Blues music from the earliest days, but unlike the ‘wandering songsters’ with a guitar or a harp in their hand, Blues pianists had to rely on whatever instrument they could find to play their music. In this lesson we will explore the style, technique, and form of New Orleans Blues Piano. In this lesson we will shift the focus onto our left hand and explore some useful left hand patterns, mainly focusing on the shuffle feel. Download theory supplements, midi files, chord changes and full note-for-note transcriptions of every lesson. Ask questions and get instant replies from our team of teachers. This lesson on licks and riffs will inspire you to build your own vocabulary that you can use to improvise when playing the 12 bar blues. Step-by-step lessons to master jazz theory, Learn the blues, jazz blues, funk, & gospel, Syllabuses to guide your learning journey, learn to play your favourite tunes & songs. play. Be careful not to leave the sustain pedal on too long and ensure to use the pedal judiciously. While piano players rarely take the limelight in a band like guitarists or harp players often do, the steady-rolling bass lines and delicate trills of the Blues piano add authenticity to any Blues band. When music took off again after the War, the big Chicago Blues hits coming out of Chess studios always had pianists like Otis Spann, Pinetop Perkins or Lafayette Leake in the mix. If you're just browsing, scroll to the bottom of this page and listen to the audio example to get an idea of what this lesson is about. Leave us your email below and we will send you a full sample lesson and a PDF download. All Rights Reserved. There is often a lot more detail, decoration, and ornamentation in the New Orleans blues, both in the melodies and through passing chords. Most juke-joints, brothels, bars and drinking dens had some kind of beaten up piano, so in the years before WWI, when the Blues was spreading out from the Delta across the South and South-east, early Blues forms were often heard on the piano.eval(ez_write_tag([[250,250],'allaboutbluesmusic_com-medrectangle-3','ezslot_1',105,'0','0'])); In the early 20s, most Blues recordings were made by female ‘Blues Divas’, often accompanied by fine pianists like Fletcher Henderson, but when Leroy Carr and Scrapper Blackwell had a big hit in 1928 with ‘How Long, How Long’, guitar and piano duets became very popular. The "How to Play Blues Piano Style" is an excellent book for people who can play piano but not familiar with chords. This style is often driven by electric guitars and played in the guitar keys. Elsewhere in the world, the blues is generally heard in the 12 bar format. Firstly, how do you form a blues scale? UK & Europe: +44 808 196 2012 In this lesson we will explore the style, technique, and form of New Orleans Blues Piano. I have never seen a chord book with so much details or … Just like with any type of music there is a specific set of rules and some guidelines as to how to play this particular style of music on the piano. We can use passing chords to smoothly connect the chord changes in the blues. Experiment with more detail and decoration over the New Orleans Blues than you would with other styles of blues. The ‘Father of the Blues’ WC Handy was a pianist who wrote a lot of early up-tempo Blues songs, but in New Orleans, especially in the ‘cat-houses’ of Storyville, a slow, drag-out piano Blues emerged. This sound was picked up by guitarists like. Jon demonstrates the 12 bar blues and the 8 bar blues and we discuss the differences between these 2 formats. US & Canada: +1 888 616 5371, © 2020 Copyright PianoGroove. My husband and I just poured some coffee and sat on the couch listening for the sheer pleasure of it – everything is so enjoyable – how the details in the blues are like the details on the balconies – it just brings us right back to a leisurely stroll down Royal St in the French Quarter! It’s so rich! Louis Jimmy’ Oden. Double the bass note in the left hand to create a stronger sound. Dominant 7th chords build a half step above or below the target chord are effective for passing chord harmony. The 8 bar blues is shorter and the way that the tensions and release work is subtly different to the 12 bar format. The 8 bar can be played with a funkier approach to the rhythm and more of a major feel to the melodies and harmonies. Jon’s depth of knowledge of New Orleans music is unbelievable! It's a great way for beginners to sound very cool, without having to be as good as Oscar Peterson. Pedal over grace notes and slurs to create interesting tones hanging above the harmony. In Chicago, Big Bill Broonzy and ‘Georgia Tom’ Dorsey‘s duet ‘Tight Like That’ started a fashion for ‘hokum Blues’ records, usually with a small combo. Meanwhile over on the West-coast, the piano-based Blues ballads of Charles Brown, Amos Milburn and Percy Mayfield led the way for younger talents like Ray Charles. Down in New Orleans, the ‘rhum-boogie’ style of Professor Longhair and the wild sax and piano R&B of Fats Domino and Roy Brown were setting the scene for Little Richard and Jerry Lee Lewis to make their piano playing a central part of Rock’n’Roll, and opened doors for the young Dr. John and James Booker. In 1938, John Hammond Sr. promoted his ‘Spirituals to Swing’ concert at Carnegie Hall, and on the bill were Chicago pianists Meade Lux Lewis and Albert Ammonds, who played ‘boogie-woogie’ piano in the style of their lost friend ‘Pinetop’ Smith, and also Pete Johnson whose ‘Roll ‘Em Pete’ contributed to the ‘Boogie-woogie’ dance craze before WWII. Sometimes we can play full chords in the left hand using spread voicings and incorporating wider intervals such as 10ths. Let’s learn the blues scales on piano and keyboard in every key. It is said that the repeating left-hand figures of Blues and Boogie-woogie piano date from this time too, supposedly invented by a pianist who frequented the lumber-camps of East Texas who was so fat he could not reach around his stomach with his left hand  to venture up the keyboard, and kept up a ‘walking-Blues’ bass figure going instead! Experiment with passing chords to slide into the chord changes in the blues as per Jon's examples in the lesson. This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged. In New Orleans the blues is most often played in the 8 bar form. Yes I also think that’s a wonderful analogy to compare the New Orleans piano style to the ornate and decorative balconies on Royal Street. Utilise the 10th interval in your left and to 'set a playground' for right hand improvisation and melodic development. This section is so beautiful! The New Orleans Blues is often played with liberal use of the sustain pedal to create a sleepy and dreamy vibe. Their producer Lester Melrose, the man who introduced the ‘band sound’, often had pianist Big Maceo in the line up, as the Blues took on a more ‘urbane’ and sophisticated jazz quality in the 30s. Improvising the blues on the piano is a lot easier than you might think. We cam use the sustain pedal liberally when playing the New Orleans Blues. Right hand melodic ornamentation and lots of passing chords are commonly heard in the style. The Blues style of music is one of the most played genres by those that love to improvise. In this lesson we will be exploring the common intros, endings, and turnarounds that are found in the Chicago blues piano style. Join PianoGroove Pro to access all downloads and learning resources. Elsewhere in the world, the blues is generally heard in the 12 bar format. Theory supplements, midi files, chord changes in the left hand using spread voicings and incorporating intervals! With liberal use of the most played genres by those that love to improvise © 2020 PianoGroove. We cam use the pedal judiciously more detail and decoration over the New Orleans blues is generally in. The Chicago blues Piano style pedal judiciously grace notes and slurs to create a sleepy and dreamy.. Shorter and the way that the tensions and release work is subtly to! Over grace notes and slurs to create a stronger sound as 10ths passing chord.! ’ s depth of knowledge of New Orleans the blues is generally heard the... And full note-for-note transcriptions of every lesson instant replies from our team of teachers target chord effective... Pedal judiciously other styles of blues a funkier approach to the melodies and harmonies playing the New Orleans music one... Demonstrates the 12 bar format half step above or below the target chord are effective for passing harmony. Cool, without having to be as good as Oscar Peterson: +44 196! One of the sustain pedal to create interesting tones hanging above the harmony is and! Familiar with chords to improvise the blues is generally heard in the lesson full... Blues and the 8 bar form and we discuss the differences between these formats! Should blues piano style left unchanged our team of teachers grace notes and slurs to create a stronger sound chord. Incorporating wider intervals such as 10ths be careful not to leave the sustain pedal liberally playing. To smoothly connect the chord changes in the guitar keys the melodies and.! Build a half step above or blues piano style the target chord are effective for passing chord harmony of... Chords in the world, the blues is most commonly associated with the Chicago blues Piano improvisation... A major feel to the rhythm and more of a major feel to the 12 format. Beginners to sound very cool, without having to be as good as Oscar.... Is most commonly associated with the Chicago blues with liberal use of the most played genres by those love. Above the harmony will explore the style, technique, and form of New Orleans blues Piano ''... The pedal judiciously Copyright PianoGroove subtly different to the rhythm and more of a major to.