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10 Blues Songs for the Blues Beginner



10 Blues Songs for the Blues Beginner


Guitar legend Jimi Hendrix

Guitar legend Jimi Hendrix

10 Blues Songs for the Blues Beginner


Here’s a universal assumption – ‘Blues music hides in plain sight’. A simplistic untying of the assumption will tell you that elements of blues are incorporated in all of modern day music. The genre is a predecessor, if you will, from where many generations of rock and roll, jazz and R&B crawled out of, globally. Closer home in India too not only indie bands, but even Hindi film music drew influences from an unimaginable pastiche of blues. If the genre confuses you, here’s a list of some of the oldest and famed blues singles that will help you understand the genre, and more importantly, take a shine to it.



“Cross Road Blues” by Cream


Cream, a blues band of London’s 1960s, re-recorded American blues legend Robert Johnson’s original “Cross Road Blues”, which then blew up when it hit the charts in 60s.


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“The Thrill Is Gone” by B.B King


B.B King, often referred to as the ‘King of Blues’, released “The Thrill is Gone” as part of his 1969 album Completely Well.


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“Hoochie Coochie Man” by Muddy Waters


Muddy Waters, a blues virtuoso of the mid-70s, was the man responsible for transforming traditional blues sounds to more electric-oriented tunes.


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“Set Me Free” by Soulmate


Shillong-based band Soulmate were one of the first blues bands in India to write original material.


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“Born Under A Bad Sign” by Albert King


American blues singer and guitarist Albert King released this song “Born Under A Bad Sign” in his 1967 album with the same name.


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“Texas Flood” by Stevie Ray Vaughan


Stevie Ray Vaughan, aka SRV, was a strong force in reviving blues in the 80s in America. “Texas Flood”, a song from the album with the same name, was the product of a collaboration between SRV and blues guitarist Double Trouble.


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“Stormy Monday” by T Bone Walker


T Bone Walker shaped the way jazz trumpets sound when used in blues with his oeuvre. “Stormy Monday”, written in 1947, was  a favourite cover song for the popular 70s blues band The Allman Brothers Band.


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“Hideaway” by Freddie King


This instrumental piece was recorded by Freddie King in 1960 but little did anyone realize that years later it would serve as inspiration for various versions of the original – mainly pop and R&B.


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“Red House” by Jimi Hendrix


Jimi is a household name and so when spoken about demands a certain dignity amongst blues lovers. “Red House” was recorded in 1966 by The Jimi Hendrix Experience, a band led by singer-songwriter Jimi Hendrix.


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“Sweet Home Chicago” by Robert Johnson


Robert Johnson was one of the earliest contributors to the blues genre; somewhere between the years 1935 to 1937. Ever since, this song has grown to become one of the most popular anthems for the denizens of Chicago.


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To read our interview with one of India’s biggest blues bands Soulmate, click here.



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