Demystifying The Shuffle Rhythm

The shuffle rhythm or feel is an incredibly important part of blues and blues influenced music, and as such it is an incredibly important sound for you as a guitarist to hear and play. Some people seem to instinctively understand this feel, and others struggle to understand what it even is. For those in the latter category, this lesson is going to be a great foundation for adding this sound into your playing!

We’re going to be diving into a couple great tunes, like “Come Together” by The Beatles or “La Grange” by ZZ Top, to give real world comparisons between similar notes played with either a straight or a shuffle feel. Understanding and hearing the difference is key! Once you get the hang of this rhythm on one song, you’ll be able to turn it off and on like a light switch on whatever songs need that shuffle-y sound!

So grab your guitar, make sure to download the free PDF, and let’s get to rockin’!

0:00 – Start
0:47 – Lesson Intro (get the tabs downloaded here!)
1:49 – Diving Into A Couple Musical Examples
3:18 – “Spilling Over” and Palm Muting On The Shuffle Feel
5:08 – Taking A Closer Look At The Picking Hand
6:08 – Take A Minute And PLay Along
6:43 – Playing A 12 Bar Blues And Adding Variations
8:17 – Straight 8ths With “Come Together”
9:24 – Demonstrating The Difference Between Straight And Shuffle
10:23 – Hopping Into “La Grange” by ZZ Top
12:02 – More Muting Talk
13:11 – Spilling Over Again
13:57 – Getting The Rest Of The Notes
15:53 – Taking A Step Back And Focusing On The Feel
16:48 – A Fun Shift In The Solo
17:59 – Closing Notes

Thanks so much for downloading the PDF and checking out the lesson. I truly hope it’s helped push your guitar playing forward.

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And here are some of our other courses that are worth checking out:

“Stairway To Strumming” (our step-by-step beginner guitar system) ⇒

Our Blues Program ⇒

Our Rock/Lead Program ⇒

Our 1960s Song Program ⇒

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Thanks for checking out the lesson, and do let us know how we can support you in your musical journey,

Will, Mike and Davis