5 Of The Easy Blues Licks For Beginners

If you've picked up the guitar, there are a huge number of musical genres you can learn. There are so many kinds of popular music available, from rock to punk, classical, funk, folk, metal, and even more for you to learn to play. However, it's always important to learn the basics of any craft, be it guitar, drums, or even basket weaving. For guitarists, that means learning a kind of music that has been influential in almost every form of modern guitar music:
blues licks.

Now, you've no doubt heard about the blues before, and some building blocks of the blues are likely in the songs you want to learn to play. However, you may not be entirely familiar with blues licks, and how they factor into modern guitar. Well, don't worry. This guide is designed to explain what blues licks are, what's involved in playing them, and finally, give you examples of some of the best blues licks for you to learn.

Playing Licks

What Is a Blues Lick? 

So with all that said, what are blues licks? Well simply put, they are the riffs and movements that the blues are based on. These licks are an essential part of blues music and its
sound. While these licks may sound familiar to you if you've listened to popular music, they are still important parts of the DNA of the blues and have gone to influence various genres of popular music as a result.

Think of blues licks as interconnecting blocks which all fit together to form a bigger structure. You may take one blues lick and connect with another to form a passage of a song. However, the blues licks also work as a starting point for your own work. You may realize two or more licks sound great together and use them as a starting point for your own leads and solos, or even songs.

Blues licks are considered the foundation of a solid 'house of blues'. Any musical group based in the blues has likely incorporated or built off of these licks in their works. That includes blusemen like Muddy Waters and Buddy Guy, but also groups that took them as inspirations. Keith Richards, Angus Young, and Eric Clapton all owe much of their careers to these licks.

Are Blues Licks Easy to Learn?

Now that you know what blues licks are, exactly what does it take to learn them? While they may not be the most complex parts of music, they still require the same dedication. Playing blues licks or any kind of music well means practicing until you are comfortable with it. So don't expect to pick them up quickly!

Easy Blues Licks

That said, there are certainly blues licks that you can, and should, learn with ease. While they still require practice, they are essential playing tools and are great for those just starting out as players. One important tool you can learn to help in this process is the pentatonic scale. Many blues licks come from this scale, in both its major and minor forms.

Practicing the pentatonic scales will help you learn, but it's not a Rosetta Stone for all blues licks. You will encounter and learn about a variety of licks that build off different blues scales, so be sure to branch out and learn from as many different scales as possible. Above all else, be sure to practice everything you learn. The more comfortable you are with these different licks, the easier they will be to play and the better you will sound!

Easy Blues Licks You Should Learn

Now, don't worry if you still aren't sure exactly how you are supposed to play blues licks just yet. We've got a way to help you. We have scoured the internet and found licks from multiple websites that will help you to learn how to play the blues and increase your knowledge. This list is only a small sampling of the blues licks available on each site, so don't be afraid to explore further and learn other licks.

Lick #1 (guitarplayer.com)

Lick #2 (justinguitar.com)

Lick #3 (takelessons.com)

Lick #4 (justinguitar.com)

Lick #5 (guitarchalk.com)


Man Playing Licks

Even if your first love isn't the blues, it's important to learn these licks and how they fit into music. The blues has influenced much of rock and popular music, so learning these licks will make you better able to play in other musical genres. They may sound basic, but it's being able to build on basic techniques that has propelled so many guitarists to the next level. With practice, it can do the same thing for you.

Remember, practicing these licks is a surefire way you will learn and improve as a guitarist. Ideally, you'll want to take pieces of these licks and combine them together to grow your talent. Moving them around in different keys is another surefire way to improve. Remember to move at your own pace and enjoy the experience as you become an even better musician!


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