Creating Licks with Thirds
Throughout this chapter, you have read about the differences between blues styles. Therefore, it seems fitting to end with some simpler licks that emphasize the similarities between blues genres. The following licks could all be applied to most styles of blues in one way or another. In FIGURE 11-6, you will see a series of examples that highlight third intervals. If you don't know what third intervals are, go back to Chapter 4. Like many of the figures used in the previous chapter, these licks build off of the clichés that most blues pianists use on a daily basis.
FIGURE 11-4: Jazzy Right-Hand Riffs
FIGURE 11-5: Minor Blues
The first example is a simple model of ascending thirds in the right hand only. The second example is more static. Here, half steps are used in the first two measures to decorate the third and fifth scales degrees (E and G). Again, only the right hand is used here.
The next example uses thirds staggered against the root (C), and both hands are integrated. The fourth example also uses staggered third intervals, but this time they are set against the third scale degree (E). This pattern eventually ends on the dominant seventh and fifth. The fifth example uses half and whole steps to descend from B-flat and D (the dominant seventh and ninth) to their counterparts an octave lower. The sixth example returns to staggered third intervals. Like example number three, each pair of thirds is set against the root (C). This pattern also ends on the almighty dominant seventh with an added ninth.