Blues Guitar Riffs That Gave Us Classic Rock Songs

When working with my students on the subject of blues I am constantly stressing the importance of getting to grips with good blues riffs simply because of their importance in building the necessary technique needed to play classic rock riffs. We all know the influence that the blues has had on the music that followed it but for the guitar it has a very special degree of importance because of the guitar riffs that have made the songs what they are. Some songs that have had a clear blues influence when being written have become so familiar as rock songs that it may be easy to overlook their roots as blues guitar riffs.

The 1960s was an inspirational time was music and the blues played a significant part in shaping much of the music that was written at the time. The Rolling Stones were great advocates of the blues particularly in the sixties but what about the guitar riff in (I Can't Get No) Satisfaction? It's known more as a rock song but you can't help thinking Keith Richards was messing around with a blues riff when he came up with it. The infamous intro and verse riff from Hendrix's Voodoo Chile (Slight Return) is another great example of how some blues guitar playing produced a captivating and, arguably his best, rock guitar riff.

The music of Cream provides us with some real obvious blues riffs which are now safely tucked in the rock category. One of the most famous being Crossroads which was of course a blues cover but arranged and recorded in much more contemporary (for the time) rock rhythm than the Robert Johnson version - and with that unforgettable riff of course. Sunshine of Your Love is another classic with a very catchy riff that is based around the notes of the very telling blues scale.

During the more definitive classic rock period Led Zeppelin made no bones of their blues influence and used a similar idea of using the blues scale as a basis for a rock riff with Heartbreaker. Bring It On Home has a very strong blues intro before it launches into that huge rock riff based around the very bluesy open E minor pentatonic scale with an added major 3rd. Listen to Rock n Roll and you will again hear a familiar blues riff that has been rocked up.

In more recent times ZZ Top are well known as a rock trio but their blues influence is obvious. Take La Grange or Tush, for example, for some real blues rock guitar riffing. The idea of taking the blues to shape a guitar riff has carried way past the seventies and eighties, however. How about Lenny Kravitz's Are You Gonna Go My Way from 1993? The whole song centres around a blues guitar riff that almost sounds like it's a lead lick but instead helps to create a really classic rock song.

The list could go on of course as there is so much blues influenced music out there and as far as blues guitar riffs go there's no denying their contribution to some great classic rock despite their not necessarily sounding like a blues riff any more.

So if you are guitar student you'd do well to learn up your on your blues guitar riffs even if you have no intention of pursuing the blues as a player. When you are trying to figure out that classic rock riff, or even think of one of your own, you'll already have a good idea of where its coming from - or indeed where it's going to.

The 5 Best Songs of Foreigner - Classic Rock Review and Trivia Question

Founding members Mick Jones and Lou Gramm, along with a group of equally important and talented musicians, have recorded numerous albums. They have sold in excess of over 38 million albums in the U.S. alone. The band has had many chart topping hits from each of their albums. This helped them get exposure without the aid of music videos. It wasn't until many years later that the classic rock band, Foreigner followed the music video trend which helped secure the future and helped the band to stay on top with continued success.

Foreigner has a massive fan base throughout the world, mostly because of the different origins of the band members. My trivia question to you is: How did Foreigner come up with the name for the band? I will give you the answer after I name my choices of the 5 best Foreigner songs.

Cold As Ice is one of the first songs to come from their début album. With its infectious keyboard opening and perfectly produced harmonies, this song was originally a B-side that ended up reaching number 6 on the billboard 100.

Hot Blooded comes from Foreigner's sophomore release and immediately was released as a single that reached number 3 on the charts. Parts of this song have been sampled by other artists, showing the impact of their style and songwriting creativity.

I Want To Know What Love Is was not their first or their last power ballad, though it was certainly one of the bands best. Lou Gramm's vocals reached an all time high on this number 1 chart topping hit. It remained number 1 on both the U.S. and U.K. charts for quite some time, making this song their most popular and biggest hit to date.

Juke Box Hero was written by the band as looking through the eyes of a fan. This harder rocking Foreigner song has some of their finest guitar riffs and backing vocals. Known highly for their vocal abilities, this song raises those talents to an all time high.

Urgent was immediately released as a single off the band's 1981 album. This song was one of their first to feature the synthesizer and saxophone as some of the main focal points to the song. With the help of Motown legend, Junior Walker, this top FM radio hit was a great success and it brought in a whole new fan base.

Gone are the days of Lou Gramm and his widely recognized vocals. With founding member Mick Jones and a new group of very talented and highly experienced musicians, Foreigner continues to tour although on a much smaller scale than in their glory days. The band never achieved the greatness it once had and may never again.

Now for the answer to my trivia question.Classic rock band, Foreigner came up with the name for their band from the collective group of musicians from different countries that formed the band. No matter which country they played in, they would always be considered Foreigners.

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Keep Rockin,
Teri L. John

What Makes Classic Rock Classic?

It's sort of frightening to consider that even Nirvana is considered classic rock now. A band with songs on the cutting edge of a new music movement in the early 90s is now relegated to history. Normally we would consider bands like Def Leppard, Deep Purple or Led Zeppelin in this category. But, on second look this isn't necessarily a band thing. Moving from grunge rock pioneers to classic rock icons isn't a sign of a band losing its place in history, but rather cementing it (and finding whole new audiences via FM radio and satellite airplay).

So what makes classic rock 'classic' anyway? Is it a specific time-frame, fashion or the dated sound of over-dampened drums? There's actually no concrete answer, except to say that there are bands from that period who had some popularity, who we rarely hear in heavy rotation all these many years later.

In the end certain acts and songs stand the test of time because of great songwriting and performance. Again, that's pretty subjective, but when you have dissimilar bands like The Police being spun on the same radio station as Def Leppard or The Fixx, an obvious question arises: What do all these bands have in common?

A band like The Police had great melodies, impeccable vocals and world-class instrumental performances that all led to one thing: a great song. Similarly, a band like Def Leppard had killer guitar riff performances, high-octane vocals and unbeatable melodies and harmonies which led to one thing: a great song.

Certainly there are some songs that come across classic rock radio which are a bit dubious in terms of song quality. But, on the whole, the bands you hear in heavy-rotation have connected with an audience across time, not because of a great guitar solo or cool fashion or style... but because they wrote or performed a song that resonated across time. This is why Nirvana is now considered classic rock. They created rock music that continues to resonate with audiences all these many years later. And while certain sounds may feel dated or you may roll your eyes at hearing the same 'hit' for the thousandth time, the bottom line is that an act created a memorable recorded performance of rock music at one time that continues to move a segment of society on some level years later. And that is what makes classic rock classic.

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The Wonderful Fusion Of Rock Music and Celtic Music

Along with Pop, R&B, and Punk Rock, there's one music genre that often flies under the popular music radar, this is called Celtic Rock. The initiative to make the Celtic Rock genre came from the minds of Celtic artists and singers who were successful in bringing out the mixing of Celtic music and rock songs that we hear these days. The success achieved by Celtic musicians is largely due to the immense success of Celtic Rock as a genre. The recognition of this genre may have been caused largely by the rock elements found in this music, as Rock music has a habit of being ear-catching and memorable to most people's ear.¨

The Celtic Rock genre is hard to identify due to its distinctive nature, so here's a good example that might sound familiar. There was a scene in the film "Titanic" where passengers in the third class or "steerage" section were gladly dancing to a bit of music with Leonardo DiCaprio leading them and when Kate Winslet saw this happening, she immediately joined the gathering, getting down on the dance floor and jigging along with the intensely infections beat. The background music played throughout the dance was in fact produced by an Irish band named Gaelic Storm, noted in Celtic music circles for creating influential Celtic Rock throughout their career.

So, exactly how does this blend of Celtic and Rock music go together so successfully? There can be three ways that you can create a successful fusion: one, by using rock music instruments in playing conventional Celtic music; two, performing rock music with the use of Celtic instruments, for example bagpipe, fiddle, Uilleann pipes, and harp; and three, integrating Celtic lyrics or rhythms into an already established and popular piece of rock music. Many royalty free music producers use the third kind as it has an infectious rhythm which works great in a marketing exercise, for example on TV advertisements.

Celtic rock derived out of the 'electric folk' music scene in the beginning of the seventies. A Scottish singer known as Donovan produced an album known as "Open Road" where he titled one of his musical compositions as "Celtic Rock", and this was the first ever recorded use of this term that became popular throughout the years.

The evolution of Celtic Rock then has become evident with numerous songs being created by Celtic bands and musicians, particularly in the Celtic areas of Brittany, Wales, Scotland, and Ireland. Celtic rock is not limited to Celtic regions, since there are also countries with large Irish and Scottish roots which are partial to this sort of music, and which often forms the cohesive elements in the pub culture of such places. To be able to pay tribute to their roots, artists usually produce Celtic Rock through playing popular rock and punk music with elements of Celtic songs in it.

When used in production music ventures such as Royalty-Free music libraries, the success noted is very high, hence why many large companies and particularly breweries such as Guinness or Caffrey's use this type of music to set the scene in their TV advertising.

Many fusion or co-operative music genres have appeared in the music industry in the past 20-30 years, but some of them were short-lived unlike Celtic Rock which continued to be well-known and influential, supplying the fuel for local groups to make it big on a worldwide scale. The best such name is perhaps U2, who shifted to a more mainstream genre, but not without the initial recognition made available from the music of Irish Rock.

There are actually musical sub-genres that are created thanks to this fusion of Celtic Rock. With Ireland giving birth to several punk bands in the 1970's, the Pogues created Celtic Punk, by blending elements of Celtic Rock, but presented punk-style. Likewise, many metal bands of later years utilized classic Celtic music in their metal, making Celtic Metal music and proving that the fusion of different musical entities is likely to continue well into the future, and that can only be a good thing.

PrimaryElements is a Royalty Free Music library with a strong leaning towards Celtic music, and other niche music from minority cultures around the world. They have an impressive library covering various genres, including Celtic Royalty Free Music. Download Royalty Free Music at

New Sensation of Afghan Music, Tamim Noorzai

In the entire world, belonging to numerous cultures and nation, music is the sole language that individuals can cooperate. Have implications to its lyrics, listen to the notes of melodies, music inspire us to move deeper within our hearts. Furthermore, music, as well as other artistic features of every nation, represents its identity.
In March 1869, modern feeling became the foundation of the Afghan Music. Musical maestros from India, the Indian influences to classical music, for Afghan authorities, blend, resulting scientific product. Consequently, classical music from both India and Afghan can not be easily distinguished from each other. Classical music of Afghan in the widest sense has twelve main authorities, which are distributed by its own influence.

An example of Indo-Afghan music artist who is famous internationally, Tamim Noorzai provides a fresh sensation for the latest Afghan song. He has numerous wonderful songs such Mothers day song, which is touching a lot of song lovers in Afghan. He is also a musician who deserves acknowledgement for all music fans from Middle East, particularly those who love the latest Afghan music very much. If you want to know more about him, his single is available to see on Youtube, as well as other websites like Afghan videos.