Blues You Can Use

by John Ganapes

(1996) Hal Leonard

Description Contains 21 Progressive lessons in various styles of electric blues. CD included. Theory is covered fairly well but this book contains more practical hands-on material.
Posted By Paul Stelzmann (340)
Directory Books/Tab: Blues
Rate/Review This Resource
Overall Rating: 4.9 (of 5)
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Member Reviews


On 5/4/2005, Matja Praprotnik (1384) posted:
Overall Rating:
This book is very good for people who want to play blues but are not sure how to approach it. It explains the minor pentatonic scale and all the notes that you can add to that scale in different situations. The chord progressions are well explained so that it is easy to understand them, even if you don't know any music theory. The practical parts are very well played and the accent is on melody and the "soul" of the song. My playing of blues got very better after I started to learn it from this book. John Ganapes published another book that is the continuation and the superstructure of this book. It's called More Blus You Can Use.
Suitable for intermediate guitarists
On 3/18/2004, Chris Karle (282) posted:
Overall Rating:
I think this is a great intro book on blues playing, and is especially well-suited for people studying on their own. I worked through all the material in the book, and liked it so much I've moved on to Ganapes follow-up, More Blues You Can Use.

The structure of Blues You Can Use is very well done, with concepts introduced in a particular lesson often showing up not in the same lesson's song, but in the song one or two lessons later. He drills heavily on pentatonic scales [of course] with exercises that emphasize learning and playing them all over the fingerboard. The bending and legato techniques standard to blues tunes are all introduced and incorporated into the songs. A variety of typical blues chords are also covered, with some nice progressions demonstrating their use. Music theory is covered but usually stays light-to-moderate -- enough to point one in the right direction, I found. I found the CD was a great help in learning the songs. If I had only one request, I prefer recordings where the lead guitar can be panned completely in and out, and the discs that accompany these two titles don't do that -- but that's a minor nit, and I'd still rate this material Excellent.
Suitable for beginner guitarists
On 4/18/2003, Mark Lane (532) posted:
Overall Rating:
I found this book/cd combination for the Blues to be one of the better items on the market. This book/cd combo covered rhythm and lead guitar development while touching on the many different styles of the Blues. Starting from a beginners view point, this combo progressed to a strong intermediate/intermediate- advanced level. Best part is that you go at your own rate. I've tried a handfull of other "how to" books, and this book/cd combo definitely rates superior.
Suitable for beginner guitarists
On 2/6/2003, Lou Mal (105) posted:
Overall Rating:
This book cleared up alot of what was missing in my playing.I recomend it to anyone who whant's to learn guitar with blues and rock and roll interest.
Suitable for all skill levels of guitarists
On 11/12/2002, Bernard Piller (69) posted:
Overall Rating:
I am about a third through this great book and am making very good progress. The book focuses on lead technics and makes the importance of scales and pattern boxes absolutely clear. Playing guitar for less than a year, I can now find my way around the fretboard pretty easily. Also moving scale patterns from key to key and finding the root notes is not hard after the first 8 lessons. My only complaint: A little more focus on rythm would be great.
Suitable for intermediate guitarists
On 4/20/2002, Mike LaFountain (220) posted:
Overall Rating:
Great book full of useful information. Has a unique layout that really enhances it's usefulness.
Suitable for intermediate guitarists
On 10/30/2001, Paul Stelzmann (340) posted:
Overall Rating:
This is an instructional book that I feel has brought me a big step up in my playing ability. If you want to learn the blues, I recommend this book. Each chapter is divided into 3 sections: Scales, Chords and Progressions, and a Study. Each Scales section delineates an exercise with the minor and major pentatonic scales. The Chords and Progessions sections cover chord patterns in the blues framework as well as 6th, 9th, and #9th substitutions. The Study is a 2 to 4 minute composition which the student learns to play; each study is on the cd. Both lead and rhythm are addressed, but more emphasis is on lead
Suitable for intermediate guitarists