When I first started playing the guitar 20 years ago, ‘Hey Joe’ by Jimi Hendrix was the first song that I learnt. All this time later, it remains one of my favourite songs to play, to jam over and to teach.
Once you have worked your way through this course and can play the solo and improvise over the backing track, I am sure you will share the same sense of joy. Hey Joe is a very fun track to play over, and it will inspire you to create a range of new and interesting ideas.
From a teaching perspective, there are a wide range of benefits of learning the solo. And we will explore these in detail throughout the course. However the most significant of these – which we will keep returning to throughout the coming lessons – is that Hey Joe will help you to understand the potential of the first shape of the minor pentatonic scale.
In many of the courses inside The Blues Club I talk about the mistake that guitarists so often make in search of progress. Players rush through foundational material in search of complex theory, unusual scales and advanced playing concepts. Yet in doing so they fail to appreciate the value of the fundamentals.
Not only this, but they fail to appreciate just how much potential they can get from what might seem like simplistic ideas. This is one of the reasons that I love to teach Hey Joe. As I explain in the video and will continue to reference as we work through the song – the solo that Hendrix plays in the song is almost entirely based around the first shape of the minor pentatonic scale.
If you have just learnt the minor pentatonic scale, then the ideas we cover in this course will help you to start soling with the scale straight away. You will learn how to navigate across the shape, in addition to a wide range of different and effective licks you can implement in your own solos.
Conversely, if you have long been playing the minor pentatonic scale, and have moved on to include further scales in your playing, then this song will serve as a welcome reminder of the benefits of the minor pentatonic scale.
It will help you to extract as much mileage out of the minor pentatonic scale as possible. It will also provide you with a variety of ways of navigating across the scale which might be different to those which you regularly include in your playing. And this will help to freshen up your playing, regardless of your level.
Of course though, we won’t just be talking about the first shape of the minor pentatonic scale. Throughout this course you will learn:
- How to play the solo in Hey Joe
- The musical context over which the solo in Hey Joe is played, and how this impacts the scales and ideas Jimi Hendrix uses in his playing
- How to recreate Hendrix’s tone in ‘Hey Joe’
- How you can improvise and create musical ideas in the same style
As noted above, one of the key benefits of this course is that you will learn how to extract mileage from a single scale shape. However you will also learn how to navigate across and use the E minor pentatonic scale, in addition to techniques that will give your playing an intense blues rock vibe.
So with that in mind, let’s get into it! When you are ready to do so, head over to the first lesson of the course. There we will be looking at the musical context of the song and the chords over which Jimi Hendrix is soloing.
This will help you to understand how the song is constructed and how it connects with the ideas that Hendrix uses in his lead guitar playing. You will also learn how to play the specific rhythm part in this song and how Hendrix breathes life into simple open position chords. See you over there! 😁