Blues Fans: T -Bone Walker and the Late 20th Century of Blues and Rock and Roll

HI All!!

Finally getting some time to dedicate to contributing to the forum as I’d like. . .it’s not much but it’s what I can squeeze in. . .

So not too broad a topic or anything (je je) but I just thought I would share that I’ve been listening to a lot of T-Bone Walker in the past several weeks and it seems to me that the more I listen to the music he made with the guitar, the more I can hear the musicality of nearly every other major blues and or rock and roll act that came after him. . .If the Stones and Beatles borrowed from Chuck Berry, Chuck CLEARLY borrowed from T-Bone. . .it’s also evident in the blues side of things. . .pretty amazing set of chops and range of musicality for one person and, to me, it seems his playing was imitated by everyone, in one way or another, that came after.

I am definitely NO EXPERT on blues, rock or music in general but just using my ears I can hear that a lot of what was to come in later years was being laid down by this guy in the 40s. . . anyway. He is definitely worth a listen particularly is the Blues is your bag. . .


Oh, yeah, T-Bone is awesome!

The lick that many think of as Chuck Berry’s signature lick:


I recently read a BB King biography, where he cited his main influences as Robert Lockwood junior, Charlie Christian, Blind Lemon Jefferson and T bone walker.


and it wasn’t just the licks, T-Bone was a showman and Chuck copied T-Bone’s on-stage antics too


Right on the Jeremy!

These early blues masters are a treat to listen, to, and importantly, for us guitar players - to learn and play their music. Recently went through a study of “Stormy Monday” by T-Bone Walker. A real treat, and an education.

These earlier blues ‘standards’ are so rich with the ideas, note selections, phrasings, etc etc that permeate all of music. Their influence is everywhere. Many of the songs themselves have been covered by countless big names since - a testament to their standing.
They certainly provide an enormous amount of essential learning too, along with the thrill of just listening. And it’s a type of learning thats not necessarily note for note, but an absorption of ideas and concepts.
Could rave about blues all day. We are very fortunate for guys like T-Bone, the Kings, Johnsons, Waters, Guys et, etc. It’s the real essence of music.

Cheers, Shane


If we never had the Blues, we’d never have had Rock n Roll. It’s the foundation of all “modern” music. Love me some T-Bone !


Hey Shane - did you use any resources for your Stormy Monday study or was it just you and a looper? I had a quick look at it myself a while back and wouldn’t mind getting into a bit more detail.

Hey Paul

The central kicking off point was Adrian Woodward’s in depth study of the piece below. Not sure if you’ve heard of Adrian, but he’s a super knowledgeable and experienced professional muso who also has a great knack for imparting knowledge.

Cheers, Shane


Somewhere on the site, of course I can’t find it now, it may even be in the classic beginner course, is a list of Justin’s 10 essential blues records you should listen to if you want to play blues, T-Bone is on that list.

Edit: Found it! :smiley:


Gotta put Muddy Waters and Buddy Guy on that list for more contemporary blues, and of course for the deep roots of guitar-based blues, Robert Johnson.


Thanks Shane! I’ll check him out,

Hey Shane,

Thanks for posting this, I will definately have a look. This is a GREAT blues tune for transitioning into jazz (at some point in the distant future, probably). I love the song and will have a look at Adrian’s take(s) on it when I can make some time to do so . . .thanks for the heads up!!!

I will definitely be taking a deeper dive into that period of this kind of music between 1945 and 1955 to have a real look round and “mine some gold” (even if it’s long been discovered by others far more competent than I) . . . :rofl: :rofl:

This is a great tune too and waws definitely a template for Mr. Berry to do HIS thing a bit later on. . .