Rick Estrin

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Blue Strollin'

Second Chorus Breakdown

This verse is the simplest verse in the piece, but please don't use that as an excuse to skim over it - Playing blues is so much more than just the notes. Use this lesson to help get the groove and feel firmly embedded in your mind and body. Also, take advantage of the fact that a simple verse like this one affords you more opportunity to notice the details of what's being played - For example, see if you can detect subtle differences in the ways I shape the fourth hole draw. Small things can make a big difference in the overall effect.





Topics and/or subjects covered in this lesson:
key of E
A Harp
Rick Estrin
Blue Strollin
Rusty Zinn

Backing Track

Print Print Chords & Tab

A Harp in the Key of E.

Loop 0:00 Rick and Rusty Playing the First Two Choruses of Blue Strollin'

Loop 1:12 Run-Through of Second Verse Acoustically

Loop 1:57 Keeping It In The Pocket

Loop 3:30 Breakdown of First Riff on the I Chord

Loop 4:07 Breakdown of IV Chord Riff

Loop 5:56 Breakdown of V Chord

Loop 7:18 Breakdown of Turnaround "Resolving Lick"

Loop 10:19 Practice Loop of 2nd Verse

Loop 10:48 Slow Practice Loop of 2nd Verse





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Bill Blatner
Bill Blatner May 15, 2016


Gagi May 13, 2016

Hi Rick !!  greate song and fantastic performance...mr. rick!!!  i d like to know;in which method are you plaing in V Chord and Turnaround "Resolving Lick" ; Tongue-blocking or lip method? thanks!!!

Rick Estrin
Rick Estrin May 14, 2016

Hi Gagi - I'm real glad you like the song. I'm tongue blocking the entire song. If you don't feel comfortable tonguing, I'm sure the song could be replicated using a combination of tonguing and lipping, however, ideally, it's good to be able to do either one at will.

Bill Blatner
Bill Blatner May 13, 2016

Hey Rick,

Great lesson.  I really like how you've created all the space so we, your humble diciples, have to focus on the rhythm and groove to make a simple lick feel and sound right.  I want to ask a question about the resolving lick, which maybe applies generally.  When I play that tricky three hold bend to the tonic to the second bend on the three hole and back to the tonic, I get a better feel by tongue blocking.  But since I learned to bend by puckering, I hit the notes better that way.  So in your opinion, is it better to work on getting a better feel puckering or to work on nailing the pitch tongue blocking?

I'm at the point where I can tell when it's not worth asking how to do something.  Mastering some techniques just takes time and practice.  So given the infinite number of techniques to master, the most helpful thing is sometimes just to know what to focus on.  I have an hour a day of back road drive time and another half hour or so a night to practice.  In the long run, it seems like it would pay to get the tongue blocking on those subtle two and three hole bends, but I'm a novice so what do I know? I mean, it's all fun but it gets more fun the better you get.

Yours plugging away with harp in mouth, hoping not to have a car accident,


Rick Estrin
Rick Estrin May 14, 2016

Hi Bill - In my opinion, it'll definitely be worthwhile to spend the time working on nailing the pitch with your tongue on the harp. It might take a little longer to master the song, but you'll end up with a valuable, important new skill.

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