Guitar Riffs #6 – Fun Rhythm & Riff

Here’s the latest in a gradually growing series of guitar riffs and licks that I’ve been doing.

Basically, this is a 12 bar blues progression I just jammed up for teaching purposes; maybe you can make something of it! The progression is simply I IV V using power chords. So that’s B5, E5, and F#5 as the rhythm section. If you’re unclear about that, please checkout my lesson on power chords for a refresher.

The riffs come out of the B pentatonic minor scale, which starts at the 7th fret. Again, if you need a refresher, checkout my lesson on the pentatonic minor scale. There are a couple small modifications in there as well, but I explain those in the video.

This lesson ties together a few different concepts that we’ve covered over the past while, so it is a bit more advanced than some of the other lessons. If you’re having trouble playing it all, then just pick a single riff out of the lesson, and go work on that. If you can pickup the whole thing right away, then great! Go off and jam with these ideas and make them your own. Don’t feel like you have to play the rhythm or riff the same way I do.

Add your own interpretation. Be creative. And have fun.

Watch on Youtube

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  1. Great Lesson. Like to have heard it with your talent button turned on. I see a wedding band that have not seen before. Glad to see you are suffering like the rest of us.

    1. Ha, good eye! Actually, I’ve been (quite happily) married for a few years, but until recently I’ve been pretty picky about playing with the ring or anything else on (watch etc). Lately I’ve been a bit more lax with it. I find sometimes those things impede my hand movements a bit. Always amazes me how these rockstar guys play with loads of bling hanging off them!

  2. Hi Jonathon,
    I have a question for you. This video is a good example of what I am curious about.
    When you are changing different patterns within a song, how can you get to change the patterns without throwing you off. I am really struggling with this. In songs that I fool around with and get to strumming I am okay until I need to switch into a different pattern, or beat within a song. It is like I get snake bitten everytime, and then to get back on track it takes me a bit. It is like I am losing the rythmn as I go along.
    Another thing is that when I am playing and come to certain spots in a song, I hesitate in doing what I should, and not on purpose either. It is like, when is it a good time to go forward.
    This may sound weird, but I really am struggling with this.

    1. If you’re really struggling with rhythm and timing, I would recommend doing a bit of strum practice with a metronome, or a drum track. Then you can use the metronome to keep on you time, and switch rhythms within that. Jam tracks can also be helpful.

      In terms of getting to the point where you can throw fills in between, I recommend picking some really easy riffs, practicing those until you get them down, and then start going through it all – real slowly – practicing the strum and the riff. As you start getting that nailed down, gradually increase the speed.

      Hope that helps

      1. Oh, right on, I thought you live down in the States for some reason. Well I am just next door here in Edmonton. Abbotsford is a nice place as is Chilliwack and taht whole area. Great fishing

    are we not worthy of lessons as also?
    oh well, let me know when the bassists have a lesson or two…

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