12 Bar Blues: Bass Lesson

by Dave Gagnon

Here are some simple basslines that can be played over a regular 12 bar blues progression.

This first example is, in my opinion, one of the standard blues basslines that everyone should know. This line is frequently played in more of a "rock/blues" kind of situation. It can also be played with a shuffle feel.




There are a lot of different ways to play the blues. In this next example we will continue to use the same 4 notes per chord but in a different order and rhythm. The chords are also simplified and do not change as often as in the first example.




A simple blues progression can be a great way to "break the ice" when playing with other musicians. Practice these in all twelve keys and keep your ears open for all of the different ways that people will play the blues.




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