Learn 5 essential blues guitar rhythm grooves with this easy lesson

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Arm yourself with the rhythm chops to see you through any blues jam...

The shuffle riff

A classic Chicago blues-style shuffle. Use your first finger on the 2nd fret and add your third or fourth finger on the higher notes.

The one-chord jam

Muddy Waters’ riffs were often played around the open E shape but we’ve got a line that can be shifted to other chords. Move to the 8th for C7 or the 10th for D7.

Delta style fingerstyle groove

Play this riff fingerstyle, using your thumb (p) to keep a steady bassline on the open sixth string as your first (i) and second (m) outline the melody on the treble strings.

Slide groove

Retune to open E (E B E G# B E) and use a slide positioned directly above the frets and on your third finger keeping the strings quiet with your first and second fingers.

Minor blues riffing

This simple minor blues rhythm combines low, single-note riffing with high string chord ‘chips’ played on beat 2 of each bar, creating the illusion of two guitars.

For more like this, try…

15 easy blues guitar chords every guitarist needs to know

18 ways to improve your blues guitar tone

5 essential blues guitar turnaround solos

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