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Best Books To Learn To Play Blues(Acoustic & Electric)

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Trusted Member
Joined: 14 years ago
Posts: 32
Topic starter  

Hi I have been reading reviews on Blues For Dummies and doesn't sound very good, so I need you guys to give some titles and authors of books I can learn techniques from starting with the basics not advanced......yet :lol: Very interested in playing blues acoustic, and wow have you seen John Mayer player? wow. Blew me away :mrgreen: Thanks appreciate it.


Famed Member
Joined: 15 years ago
Posts: 2415

Blues You Can Use, and House of Blues Method Books, those are pretty good.

In Space, no one can hear me sing!

Alan Green
Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 5342

No, no, no. You guys have no idea. Never mind books, this is how to do blues:


If you are new to Blues music, or like it but never really understood the why and wherefores, here are some very fundamental rules:

1. Most Blues begin with: "Woke up this morning..."

2. "I got a good woman" is a bad way to begin the Blues, unless you stick something nasty in the next line like, "I got a good woman, with the meanest face in town."

3. The Blues is simple. After you get the first line right, repeat it. Then find something that rhymes - sort f: "Got a good woman with the meanest face in town. Yes, I got a good woman with the meanest face in town. Got teeth like Margaret Thatcher and she weigh 500 pound."

4. The Blues is not about choice. You stuck in a ditch, you stuck in a ditch...ain't no way out.

5. Blues cars: Chevys, Fords, Cadillacs and broken-down trucks. Blues don't travel in Volvos, BMWs, or Sport Utility Vehicles. Most Blues transportation is a Greyhound bus or a southbound train. Jet aircraft and state-sponsored motor pools ain't even in the running. Walkin' plays a major part in the Blues lifestyle. So does fixin' to die.

6. Teenagers can't sing the Blues. They ain't fixin' to die yet. Adults sing the Blues. In Blues, "adulthood" means being old enough to get the electric chair if you shoot a man in Memphis.

7. Blues can take place in New York City but not in Hawaii or anywhere in Canada. Hard times in Minneapolis or Seattle is probably just clinical depression. Chicago, St. Louis and Kansas City are still the best places to have the Blues. You cannot have the Blues in any place that don't get rain.

8. A man with male pattern baldness ain't the Blues. A woman with male pattern baldness is. Breaking your leg 'cause you were skiing is not the Blues. Breaking your leg 'cause an alligator is chomping on it is.

9. You can't have no Blues in an office or a shopping mall. The lighting is wrong. Go outside to the parking lot or sit by the dumpster.

10. Good places for the Blues:
a. highway
b. jailhouse
c. empty bed
d. bottom of a whisky glass

11. Bad places for the Blues:
a. The Mall
b. gallery openings
c. Ivy League institutions
d. golf courses

12. No one will believe it's the Blues if you wear a suit, 'less you happen to be an old person, and you slept in it.

13. Do you have the right to sing the Blues? Yes, if:

a. you're older than dirt
b. you're blind
c. you shot a man in Memphis
d. you can't be satisfied

No, if:

a. you have all your teeth
b. you were once blind but now can see
c. the man in Memphis lived
d. you have a 401K or trust fund

14. Blues is not a matter of colour. It's a matter of bad luck. Tiger Woods cannot sing the Blues. Sonny Liston could have. Ugly people also got a leg up on the Blues.

15. If you ask for water and your darlin' gives you gasoline, it's the Blues. Other acceptable Blues beverages are:

a. cheap wine
b. whiskey or bourbon
c. muddy water
d. black coffee

The following are NOT Blues beverages:

a. Perrier
b. Chardonnay
c. Snapple
d. Slim Fast

16. If death occurs in a cheap motel or a shotgun shack, it's a Blues death. Stabbed in the back by a jealous lover is another Blues way to die. So are the electric chair, substance abuse and dying lonely on a broken-down cot. You can't have a Blues death if you die during a tennis match or while getting liposuction.

17. Some Blues names for women:
a. Sadie
b. Big Mama

18. Persons with names like Michelle, Amber, Jennifer, Debbie, and Heather can't sing the Blues no matter how many men they shoot in Memphis.

19. Blues Name Starter Kit:

a. name of physical infirmity (Blind, Cripple, Lame, etc.)
b. first name (see above) plus name of fruit (Lemon, Lime, Kiwi, etc.)
c. last name of President (Jefferson, Johnson, Fillmore, etc.)
For example: Blind Lime Jefferson, Pegleg Lemon Johnson or Cripple Kiwi Fillmore, etc. (Well, maybe not "Kiwi.")

20. No matter how tragic your life is: if you're rich enough to own a computer, you cannot sing the blues, period. Sorry!!!!!

"Be good at what you can do" - Fingerbanger"
I have always felt that it is better to do what is beautiful than what is 'right'" - Eliot Fisk
Wedding music and guitar lessons in Essex. Listen at:

Prominent Member
Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 827

Blues You Can Use, and House of Blues Method Books, those are pretty good.

Blues You Can Use is definitely a good book but it's not good for a real beginner. It pretty much needs you to have certain things, if not perfect, at least reasonably in hand like barre chords.

I would recommend pretty much any of the books by Keith Wyatt but in particular for acoustic blues for a beginner you might want to look at - Acoustic Blues Guitar (The Ultimate Beginner Series).

Another good choice would be the National Guitar Workshop book series. However, when I just searched for the one that I used on Amazon I don't find it. It appears that it was discontinued and they have out a new series - might be good but I don't know firsthand.

Pop music is about stealing pocket money from children. - Ian Anderson

Trusted Member
Joined: 14 years ago
Posts: 32
Topic starter  

No, no, no. You guys have no idea. Never mind books, this is how to do blues:


20. No matter how tragic your life is: if you're rich enough to own a computer, you cannot sing the blues, period. Sorry!!!!!

Thats good cause I only want to play the blues and not sing them LOL.


Guitar Mentor
New Member
Joined: 13 years ago
Posts: 2

Hey daza152,
Not an easy task ahead of you :) Wish you luck anyway.

As far as I've heard, Legacy Learning Systems have a pretty good blues course.

Famed Member
Joined: 15 years ago
Posts: 2241

Even if he evidently doesn't need to take them...

Ra Er Ga.

Ninjazz have SuperChops.

Famed Member
Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 4459

Alan that was great.

"It's all about stickin it to the man!"
It's a long way to the top if you want to rock n roll!

Trusted Member
Joined: 16 years ago
Posts: 50

+1 on Blues You Can Use. Great book.

Illustrious Member
Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 7833

Daza, eventually you will want to sing. Old time blues was more about the singing than the guitar accompaniment. Good blues still is. :D

"A cheerful heart is good medicine."

Estimable Member
Joined: 14 years ago
Posts: 98

That Was great but,
As a Canadian with all my teeth and a Asian car I have to say:

I got the blues
Oh, I got the blues
I got the blues cause I can't get the blues
My damn wife is nice, kids are good too
don't got no sickness or presidental name....
Oh I got the can't get the blues..Blues

Noble Member
Joined: 17 years ago
Posts: 1882

21: You can't play the blues in an air conditioned room

But seriously, the blues can be played by a beginner.
It's not the kind of music that needs to be about fast playing fancy fingering. It's about playing with feeling and conviction.

Oh, and this:


I wrapped a newspaper ’round my head
So I looked like I was deep