The Basic Tools of Feel

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Great blues guitarists use the Minor Pentatonic scale to create almost every aspect of the blues song.

The old saying "it's not what you've got, but how you use it" is very important when playing the scale. In this lesson, we'll learn some of the most important techniques used in playing this scale to make it sound bluesy.

Hammer-ons, Pull-offs, Bending, and Vibrato are the basic tools of articulation (In blues-speak, that's FEEL). Learn the basics of articulation in this lesson and we'll learn how to use these tools in later lessons.

As for the tab for this lesson, it is difficult to notate feel within numbers on tabsheet. Hammer-ons are often notated with an "h" between fret numbers and pull-offs are notated with a "p". Bending is often given a fret number with another number in parentheses like "9(7)". This means that the note will sound like the note heard at the ninth fret but it will be played by bending the note at the 7th fret up to the sound of the note of the ninth fret. Vibrato has no standard tablature notation. Because these articulations are based on individual interpretation and are unique to the musician using them, it is most important to use your ear and develop the ability to hear these articulations.

Andy Gurley
Instructor Andy Gurley
The Basic Tools of Feel song notation

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