Tuesday, April 3, 2018

What Did You Miss This Week? (Week 524 #568)

More Blues With A Feeling!!!

An impromptu performance of Little Walter's classic Blues With A Feeling last week led to exploring how to use that recurring hook if you're a sideman harp player.  Joe encouraged players to emphasize a hook if there is one and in this tune, it's possible to play it over the I and IV chords. Go for that repetition and establish the hook as a way of being a sophisticated player who knows the song.

In describing the hook itself, Joe noted it is best started from the 3 blow and then is a slightly flat head shake. It does also work to play other chordal effects there - tongue shake, rapid vamping and even a dirty tremelo can all substitute for the head shake. Just be sure to remember that as a general rule you want to avoid the tonic over the V chord. This means you have to leave the hook over that chord.

Playing a hook correctly relies on timing. You need to "own" the rhythm of the hook; hitting the wrong notes is far more acceptable than misplacing it rhythmically. Learn it cold and own it!

Class Notes

  • There will be no Final Take recording at the end of this session.
  • Harlem Avenue Lounge Harp Party next Tuesday, April 10. 
  • The Chicago History Museum has an amplified blues exhibit opening April 7. It features exhibit artwork from B1's own interior finishes artist Paul Minnihan, so be sure to check it out. 
- Grant Kessler, B1 Blues Crew

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