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Blues question

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by VinnyP666, Feb 17, 2003.


  1. VinnyP666

    VinnyP666

    Aug 7, 2002
    New Jersey
    whats a good blues key? which key are they normally played in. Its probably a stupid question, but, i just wanted to know.:bassist:
     
  2. SoComSurfing

    SoComSurfing Mercedes Benz Superdome. S 127. R 22. S 12-13.

    Feb 15, 2002
    Mobile, Al
    Many blues guitarists who use an opening tuning are often in either G or D, these days. Early, turn-of-the-century blues players used variations of E alot, with some using alot of A. I haven't listened to too terribly much blues recorded after the 50s or so, but I think E, G, or D would be a safe bet for a lot of it.
     
  3. When playing with horn players they usually prefer F and Bb in my experience.
     
  4. Matt Till

    Matt Till

    Jun 1, 2002
    Edinboro, PA
    I play in my uncles band, we do a lot of stevie ray vaughn, and other blues rock. They seem to favor having an open string to fall back on. E or A in blues rock usually.
     
  5. Wrong Robot

    Wrong Robot Guest

    Apr 8, 2002
    I think F is a pretty good Blues key
     
  6. What difference does it make? You should be able to play any song in any key. There are no "right" keys. Try one in Db, or Bmin. It's not rocket science.
     
  7. 5stringDNA

    5stringDNA

    Oct 10, 2002
    Englewood, CO
    I don;t knwo if there is a "good" blues key, but as mentioned, E, A and G are quite popular. I like to use a Bb or B myself much of the time because I have played horn for longer than bass...I'm definately better on bass though.:bassist:
     
  8. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    Good for whom - define "good"!!!

    I think that as a bass player the key is pretty much irrelevent - whereas it will be different for a singer.

    As Marty says - you should be able to play Blues in any key - if you can't, then this is a good place to start practicing!! ;)
     
  9. All babies are beautiful and all keys are good for The Blues. :)
    If you're just transitioning to a 5 string G is a great key, because all of a sudden you don't have to always go up to D; you can go down too!

    And it sounds so good. This is freedom!

    Mike
     
  10. Vinny,

    I think that a bass player should be able to play the blues in any key, and really, if you know some I-IV-V patterns its pretty easy.

    More often than not, your confined by the other players in your band. Certain guitar keys are easier to play blues in than others. G, D, A, and E are the "usual suspects" - not too many bands play the blues in Gb.

    Guitars all have their own natural sounding keys as well, but that's a topic for another discussion.
     
  11. moley

    moley

    Sep 5, 2002
    Hampshire, UK
    Bb.

    But, like people have said already, you wanna be able to do it in every key.
     
  12. HEY EVERYBODY...

    Don't get LOCKED into playing in just one KEY! :D

    Sorry.:oops: I thought this was the Bad pun thread.

    Mike
     
  13. whatever key the song is in would work
    peace
    frank
     
  14. VinnyP666

    VinnyP666

    Aug 7, 2002
    New Jersey
    i was not asking this question pertaining to the bass. I dont really need to know the key when i play bass. I was just asking what a "good" blues key was bc i was thinking about getting a harmonica, just to mess around with, and you have to buy them in certain keys. I was just wondering if anyone knew what a common blues key was.

    I know this is not a harmonica forum, but that why i put it in the miscalanious folder.
     
  15. cool thanks for giving me more info, our instruments are tuned a half step down ,and when we have guys come with harmonicas we usually have to modulate a half step up ,so first if i was you i would see if they had any in flatted keys like E flat,also get all the ones in the key of C i dont know much about harmonicas but i know they have sets, a lot of the songs we do are in c or e flat,do you have any idea which songs you will be playing or who you will be covering
    peace
    frank
     
  16. Why did'ntcha say so?
    OK, blues harp is played by "cross-harping", that is playing a harp up a fourth from the key centre. This is how the note bending is achieved. Good keys to have are......
    Key of E = A harp
    Key of G = C harp
    Key of A = D harp
    I sell harps in my store, and these are the most popular, because E, G, and A seem to be the keys most blues guitarists like to play in. Most all pro harp players carry all keys with them, plus many carry a Shure Green Bullet microphone, which is made for harp.Good harps to go for are Hohner Blues Harp, Hohner Pro Harp, and Lee Oskars. A good cheaper harp is Suzuki Folkmaster.
     
  17. Matt Till

    Matt Till

    Jun 1, 2002
    Edinboro, PA
    Yeah any key seems to fit the blues. It's more about the progression that makes it blues. Here's the thing I don't understand about blues rock... it's usually major it seems. It's weird how they took something as depressing as the blues, switched from minor to major... put a fast tempo behind it. Bam you've got some SRV. Put on your dancin' shoes girlie sue, wez goin' ta see Skinny and The Platelickers playin' at them music shows. :bassist:
     
  18. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    Moley would tell you that it's not Major - it's all about Dominant 7th chords - plus most guitarists use the Blues scale, which is like a Pentatonic but with an extra note, which make it very close to a minor scale.
     
  19. VinnyP666

    VinnyP666

    Aug 7, 2002
    New Jersey
    thanks for you replies. They are really helping me out ( considering the fact that I know close to nothing about harmonicas.):D
     
  20. 5stringDNA

    5stringDNA

    Oct 10, 2002
    Englewood, CO
    From my experience, the most common blues scale is a Minor Penatonic with a Flatted 5th added in. Most of the time I can play along with SRV or wahtever blues thing using this scale once I figure out the root note of the scale. Like Bruce said, teh dominant 7th is also very common, but a straight up major? I practically enver see that. You are right about it being the progression though- the most common I know of is the standard I-IV-V progression. This tends to give a very classic 12 bar blues feel and is easy to groove with. I think the reasoning behind a lot of upbeat blues is to get you out of "the blues" :cool:.