How to Play the Guitar Riff From Eric Clapton´s Crossroads – Blues Guitar Lesson w/ Jon Maclennan

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Hey, how’s it going guys this is Jon McLennan with Guitar Control, thank you so much for tuning in and I want to teach you a little bit of Eric Clapton’s “Crossroads”. Today, this is just a monumental guitar piece there’s so much amazing playing in it, but one of the elements of this song that I want to emphasize in this lesson is call and response, that’s a typical thing you’ll hear a lot in the blues.

Check the image above to follow the chords and tabs.

We’ve got a 12 bar, just a standard 12 bar blues and a key of a, but what happens is there’s a vocal melody presented in the first two bars of the blues, and then the next two bars have a guitar riff answering, so if you’re playing the guitar you got to be able to play rhythm for two bars and then go to a lead riff, and then go back to rhythm, then constantly alternates it’s two bars of rhythm ,two bars of the lead, two bars of rhythm, two bars of the lead. So let me show you what’s like, if we’re going to play the first two bars if we’ve got an a, and a, d, and that is going to go like this, and that’s just our typical kind Kansas City Shuffle, very cliche guitar riff for a blue.

So I’ve got zero, two, to zero, four, then moving up to the d string, and now comes the response. I’m going to play the riff, this is open a second fret pull off play two again and then do a hammer zero and then you bend the third fret of the fifth string, so that part goes and doing it twice. So if I play the first four of ours it’s going to play the next two bars, I’m going to play just a d chord, e chord, now to a, d, and sometimes i play this d7 over f sharp it’s like a d7 triad and then I use my thumb on the second fret. The last four of ours, is this constant alternating between the rhythm and the lead playing.

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Blues Guitar Lessons