Category Archives: Blues Music – WOW!

For the last year and a bit I’ve been subscribed to for online guitar lesson. I’ve been ok with the lessons and if I was more dedicated, well I would probably be in my sixties still trying to learn how to play guitar but I digress. Anyway if I was more committed I’m pretty sure Truefire would provide all I’d ever need to become an accomplished guitarist. I take a lesson every other month or so and enjoy it and for the price its good value even for my limited usage. All to say Truefire is an awesome site for learning guitar, I’d recommend it and will continue to subscribe.

That said I guess I just want to be taught the songs I want to learn and I’ll apply it more generally to other songs and the like, well, when I get around to it. So it blew my mind when I came across

Kirby has over 1000 acoustic cover guitar lessons by over 800 artists. Re-read that and think about it for a minute. Now this is not just strum along here are the chords unless that’s how the song goes. From my limited experience these are comprehensive lessons including a solo break for most songs and awesome sounding acoustic solo arrangements. Check this Tennessee Plates by John Hiatt arrangement Kirby has provided.

IMHO that’s a very high quality cover. I’ve purchased the lesson and wow! It’s all there, chord breakdowns, rhythm and the solo all in a very personable humble lesson so close to any private in person song lesson I’ve ever had it just blew me away. Its not beginner stuff though. it will take time and dedication to apply the lessons learned but if you wanted watered down chording and over simplification close copies of how to play originals, well, there is lots of that out there on YouTube for free.

If you’re wanting to learn some awesome acoustic covers or popular tunes please check out

Thanks Kirby for all the hard work and these great lessons.

Colin Linden (Artist)

Behind the scenes of the music I’ve come to enjoy there are some people putting it all together. I’ve come to realize that well may be the reason I love one album over another. Some are such influences that they deserve a book being written about their efforts and experiences. Colin Linden is one such person.

Colin has appeared on over 400 recordings accompanying such greats as Bruce Cockburn, Bob Dylan, Keb Mo’, T Bone Burnett and Emmy Lou Harris. He has also produced over 100 albums including several by Bruce Cockburn, Colin James and Sue Foley.

I was also introduced to two amazing songs which I found by looking up Colin’s contributions to tribute albums. Big River by Johnny Cash, I just love that E to Em strum, and Dry Bones Dance by Mark Heard. For Dry Bone’s dance Colin’s acoustic version is also worth a listen. I think that cool riff is something like this:

Colin is a great solo performer as well and as proof I present my favorite Colin Linden tune. Check this out:

Colin’s influence reaches far and wide and certainly appeals to my taste in music. I’ll be adding more about Colin and the band I’ve seen him perform most often which is Blackie and the Rodeo Kings. Here are some links to Blackie and the Rodeo Kings and the original band members Colin Linden, Steven Fearing and . The group started as a super group of Canadian performers for a tribute to Willie P. Bennet who passed away when he was 56. Another great performed who I had the privilege of crossing paths with. Now if you ever get a chance to see Blackie and the Rodeo Kings DO IT! Probably the best concert I ever saw was on their Kings and Queens tour where they rolled out one special guest after another.

Thanks Colin, Steven, Tom and Willie P for all the hours of enjoyment I had listening to your tunes and thanks to you all for reading this post. I hope it was fun and you go on to discover lots more of the music from this gang.

Boom Boom

Boom Boom is just and awesome song by John Lee Hooker. Wikipedia actually refers to it as a blues standard even though it was written in 1961. Now I though something had to be way older than that to be a standard but hey, there is no denying this is one of the most recognizable tunes out there. Here is a link to an early recording of it so you can see how this song sounded.

John Lee Hooker was famous for his presence as he led his group through free flowing blues where he improvised frequently. Boogie Chillin’ and Crawlin’ King Snake come across like this too but Boom Boom, well, it just nails it. Nothing shows this better than his performance in the Blues Brothers movies. I mean check this out:

This rendition is was out there like Thelonious Monk or Miles Davis but blues not jazz. I think this really shows the progression as John Lee Hooker’s style evolved. Now while John Lee Hooker was taking his sound this way many people were recording John Lee Hooker songs in a more commercially appealing way. The best example of this must be In 1965 the Animal’s recorded an initially more commercially successful version of Boom Boom and with their release the song went commercial and is probably the one we all recognize.

I was thrilled to find this awesome lesson online and learn that Boom Boom is surprisingly easy to play. I think it’s a little fast but then it is the Animals version and apparently John Lee Hooker’s original was 168 beats per minute.

Hope you all got a guitar out and enjoyed that. Thanks to Bruce Lindquist for that fun guitar lesson.

Thanks to John Lee Hooker, The Animals and all of you for checking out this post.

Climax Blues BAND

My love of blues all started when I first heard the Climax Blues Band‘s first album back when they were known as the Climax Chicago Blues Band. What more can I say than this album made me a life long blues fan and to this day it’s still one of my favorite albums.

The founding members of this group were Colin Cooper, Pete Haycock and Derek Holt (which did a fine interview with). In 1983 George Glover joined the group and the group’s most recent recording was in 2019 and they still tour, mostly in Europe apparently, in 2020. Checking out their website they look like a great group to catch in concert.

Other than the sentimental favorite first album my next favorite was Sense of Direction and specifically the tune Nogales.

With 22 albums to date this band definitely has a repertoire worth checking out. If you’re familiar with this band and have a favorite tune I’d love to hear about it. Thanks for reading.

Colin James

Colin James followed a musical trajectory from rock to blues with a few creative diversions along the way. Seems a natural progression not unlike my own. There is a great story from Wikipedia how Colin James got his break when the opening act for Stevie Ray Vaughn didn’t show up. Anyway I saw a show in a pub at Whistler B.C. where he played Voodoo Thing and this video brings me right back there.

As time passed Colin James gravitated more to the blues as did I . With fond memories of Voodoo Thing burned in my memory I was thrilled to find National Steel in the blues section of the record store.

If you’re looking for a list of blues artists to check out the original artists on the track list from National Steel on Wikipedia.

The most recent tune I found by Colin James left me speechless. Well almost, all I can say is thank you Colin James.

Sean Costello

If you’re not familiar with the awesome electric guitar blues of Sean Costello you’re in for a real treat. Whenever I hear Sean I’m always blown away by the tone he got from his guitar. His tone reflects what many other top guitarist would be happy to claim as their finest moments. Here is a great example:

There are only eight Sean Costello albums and three were released posthumously.

Sean Costello was born April 16, 1979 and died April 15, 2008 one day short of his 29th birthday. Sean is being remembered by his label Landslide Records with a new release called Sean’s Blues – “A Memorial Retrospective” with many great Sean Costello tunes by various artists. It’s an interesting title considering the 12 previously unreleased tracks. Oh and the tune “Don’t Pass Me By ” is not on the album!

Now here’s a little mystery I’m hoping someone can solve for me. The track “Don’t Pass Me By ” is not on the album, even though it is the title of the album. Seem’s its owned Tone-Cool Records and they seem to have disappeared. Anyone know what happened to them?

Don’t forget – this tune is not on a Landslide CD and what happened to Tone-Cool ?

Sean’s career started early with his first album coming out when he was just 16 years old. His career was short but he certainly was rocketing to the top while he was with us. Sean played constantly in concerts and bars playing as many as 300 gigs in a year. He played with many of the greats including B.B. King, James Cotton and Buddy Guy. He spent some time with Levon Helm and was fast tracking to modern day blues royalty while accompanying Susan Tedeschi who is now part of the Tedeschi Trucks Band.

Jim Brynes

If you’re looking to kickback with some fine acoustic blues Jim Brynes may be just what you’re looking for. Here is a fine mellow take on the classic Crossroads Blues

Here is another great cover. Now I love Doc Watson but I just like things a little raw like Jim Brynes does here.

Maybe I like the less polished sound because I can imagine playing it myself. So speaking of playing tunes here is a sort of cool lesson for this song that also provides some useful insight as to what it takes to learn a song like this.

Willie Dixon

Willie Dixon’s autobiography is entitled “I am the Blues” . So I’m not sure what to make of that statement but according to Wikipedia he wrote over 500 songs so you have thank him for one heck of a contribution to the blues music scene.

Here is a list of some of the most recorded Willie Dixon tunes:

  • Hoochie Coochie Man
  • I’m Ready
  • I Just Want To Make Love To You
  • Spoonful
  • Little Red Rooster
  • Bring It On Home
  • Wang Dang Doodle
  • Same Thing

Here is an awesome documentary on YouTube ” Willie and the new generation of blues. Documentary from the Berlin jazz festival 1977″.

If you’re wanting to kick back and hear the jazzy and bluesy side of Willie Dixon here is a full 2 hours of the best of Willie Dixon.

Thanks to Willie Dixon for all that wonderful music.