Muddy Waters is the blues. He combined some sweet guitar skills, unprecedented showmanship and oh yeah, a whole lotta mojo into an amazing life of blues.
For this lesson, we’ll look at a very Muddy Waters slide lick to continue our study of open G. Before we get any further, though here’s a quick recap of where we’ve been:
- Introduction to Open G Tuning | TB045
- Blues Shuffle in Open G Tuning | TB046
- Slide Rhythm in Open G | TB047
Muddy Waters Slide Lick
This particular lick is inspired by Muddy’s turnaround lick in his tune “I Can’t Be Satisfied”. It’s an incredible tune no matter which version of it you catch. Perhaps a version with Johnny Winter is your speed or maybe a nice more stripped down version.
This is definitely a tune that deserves a spot in your repertoire and hopefully this lick will get you started. But, do keep in mind that this is very much an ‘in the style of’ lick – not a note-for-note replication.
This is a good spot to point something out…
Make Your Own Music
We should all learn licks from our favorite players and yeah, we should try to replicate them as faithfully as we can. Especially if you’re in your formative years with the instrument. But, I want to encourage you to take liberty with each BGI lesson (and really anything you play) to make it your own.
Let your own style form and shine.
Here’s an example:
This song is tinged with Muddy Waters, but Joe Bonamassa definitely puts his own stamp on it. It’s Muddy’s song, Joe’s licks, Joe’s band and certainly Joe’s own mojo. Clapton summed up this very point up nicely when he gave us this great quote:
It’s been very important throughout my career that I’ve met all the guys I’ve copied, because at each stage they’ve said, ”Don’t play like me, play like you. – Eric Clapton
Take this lesson’s lick and learn it, have fun with it and then turn it on it’s head and do something truly YOU with it.