Blues Guitar Institute

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Simplified Robert Johnson Turnaround in A

Lesson ID: TB017

There’s simply no denying that Robert Johnson is one of the most influential blues players of all time. Arguably, he’s probably THE most influential blues player.


There’s so much to be said about his playing in the 29 recorded songs he left us to puzzle over for a lifetime. But for this lesson, we’ll dramatically narrow the focus of Robert Johnson’s playing to one incredibly important part:  The Turnaround.

Turnaround: A musical passage at the end of a section that returns the music to the beginning of the progression.

Further, we’re going to take the intricacies and nuances of his turnaround in A – like in Love in Vain – and strip it down to its core.

Robert Johnson Turnaround

While the turnaround is the focus of this lesson, you can check out these lessons that teach you how we built this A fingerpicking blues tune in the Tuesday Blues Series:

So Much More…

There’s so much more to say about Robert Johnson. Books have been written about him. Movies have been made and of course, legends handed down through the decades. This lesson is meant to aim straight for the turnaround, in its simplest form, so that you can start playing and exploring his amazing music as soon as possible.

Hope this helps.

When you are ready, there are two ways I can help you:

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