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Unusual 16 bar blues ?

Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by jlh60, Jan 7, 2012.


  1. jlh60

    jlh60

    Aug 21, 2009
    Warren ,Mi
    I'm trying to learn a 16 bar blues in Dm called "Keep the Blues Company", played by Code Blue. It seems to start on the IV chord rather than the I, here's the pattern I came up with.

    Intro V#,V,I,I

    IV,IV,I,I,IV,IV,I,I,V#,V#,I,IV,V#,V,I,I

    Is this an unusual pattern or a standard one I just haven't heard before? Or maybe I'm hearing or counting it wrong. I play by ear and don't know very much theory.

    Thanks,
    Jim
     
  2. Groove Master

    Groove Master

    Apr 22, 2011
    Montreal
    Author of Groove 101, Slap 101 and Technique 101
    Yes you are right on it.
    I would suggest that you see the #V as a bVI7 instead (Bb7). The IV is minor and the V could be altered with a #5 as the fifth mode of the Dminor harmonic scale or for a full altered sound play the Bb minor melodic scale on the A7. If this is over your head, don't worry, play what you hear ;-)
     
  3. jlh60

    jlh60

    Aug 21, 2009
    Warren ,Mi
    Thanks Groove Master,
    I've only gotten around to finding the root notes so far, still have to work on the rest of it.
    Thanks for the tip on the notation, I'll probably have to write out a basic chart for the rest of the the band.

    Jim
     
  4. Fergie Fulton

    Fergie Fulton

    Nov 22, 2008
    Braintree
    Retrovibe Artist rota
    No you are counting right, great example of an extended 12 bar. Works great because the intro is as we say "for free" and it is a #V-V-1-1 as intro and used as turnaround in the song, in these parts it woukd be shouted as a sharp 5 when ever it comes up because it is a #V of the D root taken as key, even though keys in Blues are sketchy due to tunings, and most will call the key as the opening bar. As the 7th in Blues likes to be implied the #V may be called a flat sixth added 7 if someone was talking chord degrees, or they might call shout it as the minor 6???? if it were scale degrees and we are working from Dm, either way could be confusing but in the end it is a Bb7 you would be trying to relate to......sounds confusing and sorry to say it is LOL, bluesman are notorious for working by ear...if it sounds good its good, but experience in hearing intervals will tell you to find the Bb7 either above or below to D. If anyone out there really know the true chord name stick it up please.
    G
    As you note it is in on the 1V once the intro is out the way.
    So it follows a standard format once in. So it moves between the IV and the 1, then to the #V for bar 9, to the I on bar eleven with the push of to the IV on bar 12, then back to the turnaround as the intro of the #V-V-I-I for bar 13-16 and of around again. Great song, the extension is only four bars hence why we end up with sixteen bars. if you wanted to look at it in context because at bar nine where it would see it going to the V in a standard 12 bar and working its way back through the IV to the I to start again. Even in this example if we went to the #V turnaround, as in the into and as from bar 13 we would indeed end back at the I at the end of 12 bars. But a turnaround is not, as many see it a conclussion, but more of new start, setting up the next 12 bars for something, so turnarounds can be seen as a lead in as well as a lead out. In this case the #V turnaround would not work in 12 bars because it leave the music unfinished if you will, partly due to the "in" on the IV, and the use of 2 bars in each of the changes So an extra four bars is used at bar 9 in this nice classy way to give it a bit of soul, and the little push to the 12 is a nice touch just to remind you sub-conciously that's where the standard 12 would have ended, so four more bars and we are out.

    Just for a reference i have resolved different 16 bar songs like this when they have followed standard 12 bar patterns, just by playing the turnaround twice, so in this case at bar nine it could go to the #V-V-I-I the repeat it again to resolve it over 16 bars, country music crops this up a bit, so maybe that's where it originated from?
    Still 16 bars, but just another thing to look out for when you encounter 16 bar blues.....funny enough 8 bar blues are common which is half of 16, but not 6 bar which would be half of the standard 12?????????
     
  5. Groove Master

    Groove Master

    Apr 22, 2011
    Montreal
    Author of Groove 101, Slap 101 and Technique 101
    Easy, it should read like this:

    Bb7|A7|Dmin|Dmin||Gmin7|Gmin7....etc It is all there.
     

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