Truefire - Mike Zito's Blues Americana (2014)
Eating homemade apple pie at your grandmother's house. Watching baseball with your kid in the cheap seats. Running Route 66 in a souped-up ’69 Chevy Camaro. Hot dogs smothered with relish and mustard. Coca-Cola, salted fries, and ketchup. Rock and Roll, blues, jazz and country music. Mike Zito and Blues Americana. Chicago Blues, Texas Blues, Delta Blues, Swing Blues, Jazz Blues, British Blues, West Coast Blues, Country Blues, Jump Blues and the list goes on. All historically rooted to a region or an era or a specific group of players. All of them popular in their own right. But there’s another kid on the blues block, which Mike Zito calls Blues Americana. Blues Americana is a melting pot of all the aforementioned genres of the blues, with equal respect paid to the rock, country and jazz music that has also tickled our ears over the past several decades. While still rootsy to its core, Blues Americana represents a modern evolution of the blues.
No one is better suited to guide your Blues Americana learning experience than Mike Zito. Mike’s take on Blues Americana stems from his own experiences practicing, playing, touring and recording since he was 16 years old. While Mike’s pedigree, credits, and accolades are all pretty impressive, it's his very special and genuine teaching skills that make this course a must-have for any guitar player.
Mike organized Blues Americana into 2 sections. In the first section, Mike covers 17 key concepts and techniques that you’ll put to good work, and get plenty of mileage out of, in your own Blues Americana: Influences and Technique, Alternate Picking, Hybrid Picking, Finger & Thumb Style, Combining Techniques, Bending & Vibrato, Half-Step Bends, Slurring & Half Step Slides, Double Stops, Thumb & Fingerstyle Licks, Hybrid Rolling Licks, Phrasing & Melodic Approach, Tone and Feel, Building a Solo and THE Ultimate Rolling Lick (might be worth the price of admission alone!).
In the second section, Mike guides you through 8 performance studies where you’ll apply all of the key learnings from the first section over rhythm tracks for musical context. You’ll play your way through a variety of feels and tempos: Natural Born Lover, Change My Ways, Dirty Blonde, Slow Blues, Rhumba Feel, Classic Rock 'n' Roll, Don’t Break a Leg and Subtraction Blues.
Mike first performs the study over the rhythm track and then breaks it down for you in detail, demonstrating many additional concepts and techniques along the way. Everything is tabbed and notated and you’ll get all of the rhythm tracks to practice with on your own.
Now go have a hot dog or two and a slice of apple pie. You’re gonna need the nutrition because you won’t come out of the shed once you start digging into Blues Americana.
SECTION 1: Key Concepts
Influences and Technique
Right Hand Techniques
Finger & Thumb Style
Bending & Vibrato
Half Step Bends
Slurring & Half Step Slides